You may be wondering how to care for bent grass greens. Here are some tips: Avoiding Creeping bentgrass, Common insect problems on bentgrass greens, Watering and resurfacing your greens. Also, be sure to check out our blog on proper maintenance. We will share the best practices for keeping your bent grass greens healthy and beautiful. And of course, we will talk about common mistakes to avoid. In addition, we will look at how to take care of bent grass greens during the different stages of their life cycle.
When it comes to building a putting green, seeding creeping bentgrass is an excellent choice. Its dense upright growth habit and superior ability to compete with Poa annua make it the perfect choice for a putting green. Besides being cheaper than stolonising, seeding creeping bentgrass greens is an excellent method of creating a putting green that will last for years.
Because of the high carbohydrate requirements, creeping bentgrass is a strong thatch-former. This is due to its slow decomposition rate in the sand rootzone. The long ligule also helps the greens hold water longer. In warm weather, the leaves will be dry and look lifeless. This type of grass will also tolerate low mowing. However, if you don’t mow your greens regularly, they will turn brown in the summer.
The winter in Minnesota was particularly hard on golf greens, and several of the greens around the Twin Cities had lost their spring playability. Though the upper Midwest received rain early in January, it was still cold enough to cause localized dead patches. Although creeping bentgrass is not winter hardy, superintendents can still use it in the summer. They can use fans to reduce soil temperatures, as well as irrigation. Morning irrigation is preferred to afternoon irrigation.
V8 is the latest powerhouse creeping bentgrass, a cross between elite breeding lines selected for improved dollar spot resistance and close-cut tolerance. It has been seeded on golf courses around the world. It was then evaluated against other experimental and commercial bentgrasses. Its best properties lie in the greens, but it is equally adaptable to tees. In addition, it is hardy enough to survive in cool temperate regions and transitional zones.
Common insect problems on bentgrass greens
There are many pests that can damage your bentgrass greens, including flea beetles, thatch collapse fungus, and bacterial wilt. While these pests may be common, they are also a growing problem. Fortunately, turf researchers are constantly trying to stay ahead of the latest pathogens and pests. Read on to learn more about the most common pest problems on bentgrass greens.
Putting greens are frequently affected by cutworms. Cutworm damage looks like an unrepaired ball mark. To prevent cutworm damage, apply a “disclosing solution” (one ounce liquid detergent in three gallons of water), which will force larvae to the surface. Insecticides containing synthetic pyrethroids are also a good option. Several common pests can be controlled with these methods.
ABW is another common pest of bentgrass. While it normally develops in cow dung, it has become a serious problem in certain types of sod. Specifically, bentgrass greens with a thick thatch are frequently attacked by these insects. ABW produces white grubs that grow to be one-half inch long. During the first and second generations, grubs are most common.
Bentgrass greens require intensive fertilization practices. Proper application of fertilizer can promote leaf, stolon, and carbohydrate storage. Fertilizer should be applied at the proper time of the year, but should not be used between June and September. In addition, monthly applications of nitrogen are helpful, at a rate of 0.25 pounds per 1,000 square feet, from October to May and 0.25 pounds per thousand square feet from June to September. Insects may also affect the growth of bentgrass greens, which leaves the turf susceptible to additional stress.
BGB larvae are the main culprit for most bentgrass pests, and they are most noticeable in spring and summer. Inspecting the greens for their presence can help you detect damage early on. The damage thresholds for this pest are 30 to 80 larvae per square foot during the spring generation and 10 to 40 during the summer generation. However, field experience suggests that the thresholds for action are lower than these numbers.
Watering practices for bentgrass greens
Most golf greens require potassium, phosphorous, and iron. To determine specific nutrient needs, consult soil analyses. If you have bentgrass, consider rolling or venting to promote proper water infiltration and gas exchange. Light, frequent irrigation during warm weather is best, and fungicides may reduce stress. Watering a green during the AM may reduce germination and help the turf tolerate wear and heat.
Proper irrigation can help moderate temperatures during times of heat stress, but the proper rate and schedule must be followed to avoid depletion of soil oxygen. For a successful bentgrass greens management plan, consider irrigation with a timer and watering light by hand to compensate for differences in irrigation systems and turf water use. Even a minor flaw in the greens’ construction will not be detected until midsummer when temperatures climb. Watering a green with an improper irrigation system may lead to increased stress symptoms.
The amount of traffic on a bentgrass green varies. Higher rates of Milorganite or Urea increased canopy greenness. High rates of these nutrients were associated with higher turfgrass quality than low rates of N. However, studies have failed to consider different levels of traffic stress. Soil moisture content thresholds will vary depending on the species of bentgrass greens. Nevertheless, supplemental rainfall and syringing significantly increased canopy temperatures. Lack of shade also contributed to higher canopy temperatures, which increased GHG emissions.
In order to determine if your bentgrass green needs water, you can use a soil moisture meter to measure its rootzone water content. Watering frequently will encourage healthy grass roots, while infrequent watering will help reduce the risk of disease. A good indicator of when greens need water is the color of the grass. A blue-purple hue is an indication that the grass is in need of water. A few key steps to take to ensure a lush bentgrass lawn are necessary.
Resurfacing of bentgrass greens
Resurfacing of bentgrass greens can take many forms. Classic designs are best preserved, so that the original contours of the green are retained. Projects can involve spraying or stripping away the older turf, then planting new grass on top. Heavy thatch layers may require excavation of several inches, and a new mix installed. The end result is a green that plays faster and has more consistent putting characteristics. However, if the green is old, it may need to be completely removed before the project can begin.
To determine the right approach for resurfacing bentgrass greens, the owners should consult an expert. Several golf professionals will recommend different methods, including seeding and sodding. Both methods avoid course closure. Listed below are some of the advantages of either method. A: Using pure seed is more cost-effective than seeding. Pure seed is an EIGCA Bronze Partner. Tee-2-Green is a company powered by Pure Seed.
Resurfacing of bentgrass greens may require seeding in the spring and late fall. One pound of seed per thousand square feet of soil was used to seed the bentgrass greens. The seeds were then rolled and watered. It took approximately 2,500 man hours to complete the project. The new bentgrass greens consistently germinated within five days. Aside from resurfacing the greens, the process of applying fungicides also improves root growth. In addition to that, the fungicides can minimize stress on the greens. However, DMI can cause thinning of bentgrass.
A course with a warm climate should invest in a sub-green cooling system to maintain a cooler ground temperature for the bentgrass to grow. This is typically found at private clubs or in upscale resorts. The Augusta National Golf Club, which converted its bermudagrass greens to bentgrass in 1981, credited its sub-green cooling system and hardier bentgrasses for the successful conversion.
Removing thatch from bentgrass greens
A variety of techniques are available for removing thatch from bentgrass greens, including topdressing, core aerification, and a combination of these two methods. Topdressing involves applying a thin layer of soil to the entire turf, raking or dragging it into the turf in contact with the thatch. The soil contains microorganisms that promote faster decomposition of the thatch. Core aerification combines topdressing with aerification of the soil layer beneath the turf. Soil cores should be spread on the turf surface to air dry. Coring is also useful because it allows the soil to mix with thatch, speeding up the decomposition process.
Excessive thatch is typically a result of infrequent or inadequate cultivation. Golfers don’t necessarily appreciate cultivation practices, so the underlying reason for excess thatch is often insufficient or infrequent cultivation. Though cultivation may be an unpleasant inconvenience, it is essential for controlling thatch and producing firm surfaces. It’s also a good way to improve the appearance of bentgrass greens. If thatch is a common problem, consider using the services of a professional to remove the layer of thatch.
Although it may be tempting to remove thatch by hand, this method isn’t recommended unless the lawn is particularly weak or in need of renovation. In addition, the amount of thatch removal varies greatly, based on the depth of the layer. Heavy accumulation of thatch will require extensive thinning of the turfgrass and should only be attempted on golf courses with very strong greens. Besides, it removes a significant number of live turfgrass plants.
While core aeration isn’t a perfect solution for removing thatch from bentgrass greens, it is one of the best preventative measures for this issue. It improves air circulation in the soil, enables plants to thrive, and also physically remove thatch. Then, fertilization should be sufficient, but not so heavy that it can build up thatch. Finally, fungicides and pesticides should be used only when necessary for control of pests, and should not severely reduce the population of earthworms.