COURSE CARE
Spring Means Different Things To Different People February 27, 2015

Spring Means Different Things To Different People

By Stanley J. Zontek, Director
April 8, 2009

Spring is great; the grass begins to grow, birds sing, flowers are blooming, and, following a drab winter, spring brings renewal. Interestingly, as it pertains to golf and turfgrass management, spring means different things to different people.

The Golfers . Obviously, it is a chance to get out and finally play some golf. The winter has been long and harsh enough in the Mid-Atlantic Region to have made winter play either miserable or not possible. Spring temperatures mean golf and more golf. In today's economic climate, play could be up as golfers travel less and use the facilities closer to home.

Spring is a time to try out the new clubs you got for Christmas and to hit those new "hot" golf balls that you always wanted. It's also a great time to get some exercise and burn off those extra pounds gained over the winter.

Turfgrass Managers . Agronomists look at spring differently. With the coming of spring and working to prepare the course for golfers, many tasks need to be accomplished in a short period of time.

Golf course presentation at the start of the season is very important.

Are the twigs, leaves, and winter debris collected?

Are the bunkers tilled/raked and edged? Has the bunker sand been redistributed that shifted over the winter? Does new sand need to be added?

Have preemergent herbicides for crabgrass control been applied? (Note: Whether it is a golf course or your home lawn…now is the time to do it in the Mid-Atlantic Region.)

Have your spring preventative applications for insect control been applied? The Hyperodes weevil is on the move and grubs are migrating back to the soil surface.

Have the weeds been controlled before they flower?

As we look towards the 2009 season, remember two things. First, the game of golf is in fact just a game. We sometimes take golf way too seriously. Enjoy yourself out on the course. Second, the game of golf is played on grass. It is important to do what is necessary so that the grass is in good condition. Thus, it takes a team effort to accomplish all of these goals.

The Mid-Atlantic Region agronomists are part of your agronomic support team. If you have questions or concerns, give us a call or send an e-mail. Stan Zontek ( szontek@usga.org ) and Darin Bevard ( dbevard@usga.org ) at 610/ 558-9066 or Keith Happ ( khapp@usga.org ) at 412/ 341-5922.