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Time for preventative Pythium applications.

With the snow melting and mild weather on the way, it is time to start planning preventative Pythium applications.  Bentgrass is primarily infected with Pythium volutum while Poa annua is the target of Pythium torulosum but both of these organisms will come out of dormancy and begin to attack turf roots once the soil thaws and temperatures start climbing.  It’s very difficult to pick a day off the calendar to make these applications but I with current weather pattern and predicted temperatures, the first week of April looks like a good opportunity to start.  Keep in mind that any material needs to be watered in and highest available rates should be used.  The type of Pythium present will often determine the material to choose but Subdue does not generally work well for root Pythium and a second application will likely be required around the beginning of April.  Also, DO NOT make applications when rain is expected because precipitation can push the material past the root zone.

Categories: Managment Practices

Use care with PGR’s in the cold!

Most people are very aware of potential damage to turf when using PGR’s at high rates in the heat of the summer. However, cold temperatures can also exacerbate PGR damage.  In particular, Proxy and cold weather do not mix. When Proxy is applied during periods of freezing or near-freezing temperatures (usually night-time temperatures), it can do significant damage to creeping bentgrass, turning it purple and slowing growth.  This can even happen with night-time temperatures in the 40’s.  Timing is critical with Proxy so superintendents will often try to get it out sooner than later but they do risk bentgrass damage if applications are too early.  Luckily, this damage recovers within a few weeks.  Little to no damage will be observed on Poa under the same conditions.  With the cold spring of 2014, these symptoms have been widely prevalent.   In addition, I know of one course seeing extreme damage to bentgrass with the application of PoaCure.  This is the first incidence I am aware of where PoaCure has cooked bentgrass at cold temperatures but it is something to be aware of.  PoaCure is a new material and a learning curve is often involved with new products.  It is unclear how cold temperatures need to be to cause damage and whether a precipitation component is involved in this particular situation but superintendents should test any new material thoroughly before applying it too widely.

Categories: Managment Practices