Disease activity presents a significant challenge to turfgrass professionals. Understanding some of the key contributing factors will help in building a healthy lawn. Soil makeup, grass varieties, pH, organic content, and maintenance programs all determine much of your success or failure. Using technology to your advantage is often an overlooked aspect. Professional lawn care has historically used N, P, and K to try to solve or mask issues. Newer products that provide certain ingredients to get specific responses from the turf plant are the best approach to win the disease battle before it begins or gets out of hand. Three technologies to consider are Colonise Bio LTO, Microsync, and Armament.

Colonise Bio LTO

True plant care products like Colonise Bio LTO will give the color and developmental response people are looking for. They provide an extended benefit beyond simple plant nutrition, which is extremely important for disease resistance and recovery. Colonise Bio LTO provides stress resistance not only to disease but also to heat, drought, and other stress factors. Colonise Bio LTO has AminoPrecise technology, which includes Armament, humic acids, amino acids, vitamin B1, beneficial bacteria, and blackstrap molasses. 

Colonise Bio LTO contains bacteria that fix atmospheric nitrogen, converting it into plant-usable forms. This is one way that Colonise Bio LTO works to improve the well-being of the soil. Colonise Bio LTO also includes live microorganisms which help provide resistance to the different disease organisms that can infect plants and cause plant decline. Other organisms work to decompose thatch, while others work to condition soil for better root growth.

Colonise Bio LTO also includes multiple carbon sources that are used to proliferate biological life in the soil. Specific amino acids work to help the plants create stronger roots, more chlorophyll, and anti-stress compounds. All of these beneficial components are directed toward encouraging more robust, stronger, and resilient plant growth. Plants are able to better defend themselves against insects, disease, and environmental stresses. This typically results in turf that holds color longer, is more vigorous, and is more aesthetically pleasing.


Microsync is a premium micronutrient product containing two incredible, specific amino acids. The amino acids promote anti-stress compounds and build chlorophyll more readily in the turf plant. Microsync also contains premium micronutrients: iron, zinc, manganese, boron, and copper. The combination of amino acids and micronutrients will promote a denser, greener, and healthier turf plant. 

Foliar-Pak Microsync is a different animal than other products on the market. The primary difference is that, instead of using carbon-based complexers (such as amino acids or polysaccharides), we’re using chelates that will fully bind the metals. This process prevents the metals from interacting with negatively charged ions such as phosphorus, sulfur, and pesticide molecules. Where a single amino acid or sugar molecule might bind a metal at two sites, the premium chelates in Foliar-Pak Microsync bind at six sites on the metal (the maximum number of available sites). With Foliar-Pak Microsync, you don’t have to worry about material precipitating out in a tank mix as you do with your standard iron-micronutrient products. 

In addition to the premium chelated metals that will perform in high- and low-pH soil conditions while still being available for foliar intake, Microsync contains specific amino acids. Two of these incredible amino acids both metabolize into anti-stress compounds that are loaded into the vacuole, ensuring that water remains in the cell even during hot, cold, dry, or salty conditions. In addition to this, one of the amino acids is the starting material for chlorophyll pigment. This means that the turf will be able to build chlorophyll more readily.


The broadest of the three technologies we’re discussing today is Armament. This technology is present in many Foliar-Pak products, as a coating on granular fertilizers, and as a liquid concentrate. Armament is a patented technology proven to provide excellent results with color, disease, stress resistance, and recovery as well. It’s a very long-chain engineered amino acid, which is truly science and technology in motion for turf. 

Armament is like a nutrient bank for the soil. It has a bunch of negative charges because it uses a beta form of the molecule to provide those charges in the right place. By having a bunch of negative charges in the right places, it pulls in positive cations (Ca, K, Mg, Mn, Zn, Fe, Cu, Mo, and more). This keeps those nutrients plant-available and acts as a “nutrient bank” for the soil. Another way to think of Armament is the “sun” of the soil. It has a high molecular weight, just as the sun has a high molecular weight (mass) that pulls in the planets. Similarly, the high weight of Armament pulls in available nutrients. 

Armament lasts 90 to 100 days in the soil. This means, on a delivery basis of every six to eight weeks (what most Armament recommendations would be), you’re actually building Armament in the soil. As Armament breaks down, it breaks into smaller amino acids that can be used by the plant. This is different than a synthetic molecule that can’t be used by the plant. I equate this to a corndog on a pretzel rod instead of a wooden stick. When you finish the corndog, you get to eat the pretzel rather than throw away the stick. 

Armament aids directly in root development and cell wall production. Armament itself assists in the overall uptake of nutrients. In many cases, there’s plenty of iron in the soil already—the turf just needs to find it. The zinc, boron, and Armament all work together to increase root development and overall nutrient acquisition, including iron. This is why you see a longer green-up with Armament-treated fertilizer than you do with a standard fertilizer with some sort of iron (which usually isn’t available to the plant, anyway). You will also see less disease, better stress resistance, and improved recovery due to the nutrients being plant-available.

Remember, the key to avoiding issues is to take advantage of technology, which will save you money in the end and provide a greener, healthier lawn.