Wednesday, June 12, 2013

"Oh, they've topdressed the greens"

#16 green being topdressed with new white sand
Applying sand topdressing to ultradwarf bermudagrass greens is one of the most important and vital practices that occur for this grass during the summer months.  Without applying topdressing ultradwarf greens run the risk of becoming "spongy" or soft, become very prone to scalping, and have a reduced water infiltration rate and can reduce the amount of oxygen being exchanged with the atmosphere.  All of these issues can lead to the catastrophic failure of ultradwarf greens.

From an agronomic standpoint the topdressing helps to firm up the surface of the green to allow the mowers to "float" across the surface better which helps to eliminate scalping of the green.  It also aids in the dilution of organic matter which can seal off the surface and helps to reduce the occurrence of localized dry spots.  From a golfers standpoint (believe it or not there are benefits to the golfer) the topdressing helps to firm up the surface which will give the ball a truer roll and it helps to fill in any imperfections or damaged areas on the green.

#11 green being topdressed with our former green dyed sand
For years we have been using a kiln dried topdressing sand which is painted green to mask the topdressing applications that we make.  We chose to use the dyed sand because it works into the putting surface easier since it is dried and most golfers can not tell when we have topdressed.  The price of the green dyed sand we have been using has gotten quite out of hand and I have been needing to find a better and different sand source.  So that is why the topdressing sand which was applied to the greens today was not your typical, customary green sand.  I did not want to pay the price for the dried green sand from the new supplier until I had used the sand and made sure it is what we need.

That being said.  I am very pleased with the new topdressing sand as it has a finer particle size and consistency and will work into the canopy much easier than our old sand.  We have had a problem with our old sand of sitting on top of the canopy and not getting worked in.  This would lead to being picked up in the mower buckets and discarded in the woods with the grass clippings.  That was wasteful and unacceptable.  Have faith we will be back to our green sand shortly and you will once again not know when we have topdressed.

You may also have notice a "band" of sand around the perimeter of the greens.  We placed this extra pass of sand around the perimeter of the green to help firm up the cleanup lap.  When we aerified last week we made a pass around the edge of the green which removed extra putting green surface from this area.  The clean up lap has been prone to scalping for some time and we are hopeful that this extra sand will help firm up this area and eliminate the scalping.  If it works as we think it will, we will make this pass on a more regular schedule.

No comments:

Post a Comment