Weather And Water

By Bud White, director, Mid-Continent Region
August 20, 2013

Another year of summer extremes in the Mid-Continent Region. Challenged by droughts in recent years, some areas in the region were then ravaged by floods.

The Mid-Continent Region has certainly seen a wide variation in weather patterns this summer, but extremes in 2013 have been much easier on the turf than those of the last two to three years. “Extremes” in 2013 include the significant amounts of rain and even flooding that was experienced from Arkansas and Oklahoma going north, while at the same time continued drought conditions plagued Texas. However, temperatures have been much milder this summer than in the past three years, which has certainly made for easier management of bentgrass in the South. The reduced number of days topping 100°F in 2013 compared to previous years has also allowed for better turf recovery and weed control. 

For those who have had some rain this summer as well as milder temperatures, it is important to remember that Poa annua will be most prolific early this fall and preemergence herbicide programs need to be applied in August to maximize Poa annua control. Research has shown that when preemergence materials were applied in early August, Poa annua weed control of 95 percent was obtained. However, waiting until the end of August, the same applications achieved only 50 percent control of Poa annua in some cases. Thus, an early-August preemergence application is necessary to maximize Poa annua control for the fall and winter months. 

Believe it or not, conference season is already underway. On Aug. 6, a regional conference was held with the Club Managers Association of America (CMAA) of North Texas and the Texas Alliance of Recreational Organizations (TARO). The same education program is slated for the Houston area on Aug. 28.The CMAA and TARO held these regional conferences together so Texas water issues could be discussed in detail and groups outside of golf course superintendents could be updated and educated on water issues facing the golf industry. Topics for the program include:

  • Impact of water issues and how they affect golf courses and golfers.
  • Dealing with water management districts.
  • Understanding how TARO is lobbying Texas legislation to update government on the impact of the golfing industry.
  • Update on the Lone Star Golf Course Superintendent Association’s efforts to assist TCEQ (Texas Commission on Environmental Quality) in developing golf course BMPs for water and drought management.

For information and registration on attending this conference, visit South Region/TARO Allied Association Meeting

Source: Bud White (

Information on the USGA’s Turf Advisory Service

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