Before you begin a late-summer recovery program on your course, ask yourself why the turf needs to recover in the first place. Consider whether the cause was insects, disease pressure, high traffic, limited air movement, poor light conditions, drainage issues, uneven irrigation coverage—or, most likely, a combination of factors. Understanding the problems will help identify the best solutions for the long term and short term. This blog post will look at practices for turfgrass recovery at the end of summer.
Now’s the time to apply a fertilizer such as Foliar-Pak Grow-In. Grow-In combines a foliar N-P-K fertilizer with a biological component and micronutrient package to enhance root growth and rapid turfgrass recovery. Follow up a week later with a granular N-P-K fertilizer.
If you have recent soil test results, refer to them when purchasing fertilizer. If you haven’t had soil tests done in a few years, it may be a good time to do them. Late-summer applications should be a high-quality, slow-release nitrogen source. You’ll want this application to feed through fall until late-fall fertilizer applications.
In central Ohio, seeding projects are most successful from mid-August through mid-September. Seed-to-soil contact is critical for a seeding project to be successful. Remove all dead vegetation from dead spots. Use a cultivator tool like a Garden Weasel to prepare the seedbed in small areas or use an aerator in larger areas.
Include a starter fertilizer when seeding. Keep the area watered, and consider using a mulch like Seed-Aide or a straw blanket. Quality seed is critical for long-term success. Coated seed, such as Advanced Turf Solutions mixes and blends with Foliar-Pak XCD, greatly enhances rapid establishment.
Aerate putting greens between Labor Day and the end of September to take advantage of the excellent growing conditions typical of this time of year. Core aerate and fill the holes as much as possible with sand-based topdressing to create a column for water and air penetration.
Keep watering. Putting greens dry out quickly after aeration! For rapid recovery to keep golfers happy, Foliar-Pak has a great cool-season aeration recovery program that includes four Foliar-Pak products applied three days before aeration and seven days after aeration.
Disease and Weed Control
For disease control, it’s a good idea to continue a preventative fungicide program through October. Remember to rotate or combine fungicide families to minimize resistance problems. Fall is also the best time of year for broadleaf weed control. Talk with your ATS sales representative about your unique weed problems for a customized solution.