Customer Story: Justin Hudson
Justin Hudson may have never expected a career in the turfgrass industry, but now he can’t imagine anything else. “I just went to turf school because a buddy of mine was going and ended up liking it and kind of stuck with it,” he said. “I’ve been doing it about 20 years.”
Over his career, Justin has worked at a handful of courses in North Carolina. He’s been the golf course superintendent at Maple Chase Golf and Country Club for the past six years, and he’s also been one of the first ATS customers to try a new product called Sempre Verde.
Sempre Verde is a new turfgrass colorant from Foliar-Pak, with technology powered by Precision Laboratories. It has a natural green color that is especially valuable for use on dormant warm-season grasses in the winter.
At Maple Chase, Justin has a crew of eight full-time and four part-time employees maintaining an 18-hole golf course. Located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, the course has a 9,000-square-foot putting green and a five-acre short game practice area.
Justin’s ATS rep, Matt Carver, first introduced him to Sempre Verde before the product even had a name. Matt not only secured the product for him early on, but he also visited the course when the crew was making applications. “He came out here when we were spraying it, assisted with the rates, and all that,” Justin said. “He’d come look at it periodically. I think he actually sprayed some of it, too, if I remember right.”
Justin applied Sempre Verde to the course’s two bermudagrass greens, the short-game practice area, and the target greens on the driving range. He had used other colorants previously, but he saw a noticeable difference with Sempre Verde. “I felt like it kept its color a little longer. I never reapplied—I just did the one application of it. The other seemed like it kind of faded a little quicker, and you would need to reapply.”
That longer-lasting color comes from the sticker technology in Sempre Verde, which increases its adhesion and color retention. The sticker technology also provides better spray coverage, making it easy to trust a crew member with the application.
Spring green-up is a concern with some turfgrass colorants, but not Sempre Verde. In fact, the product’s dark color actually attracts more sunlight to promote photosynthesis and encourage earlier spring green-up. That’s what Justin saw on his course, where the areas he applied Sempre Verde greened up first. “They were ahead of everything else,” he said. “The short game area around the greens did green up quicker.”
In addition to the benefits Justin saw from using Sempre Verde, the availability of the product made it an obvious choice again last year. He plans to continue using Sempre Verde in the future, too.
According to Justin, the primary benefit of Sempre Verde is “just the deep green color it gave, lasting the season.” At a year-round course like Maple Chase, that lasting color helps Justin and his crew deliver the experience golfers seek.