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Super insights: tips from fellow supers to improve control of diseases, nematodes, weeds and more

As 2019 comes to a close, we want to look back at superintendents across the country who overcame tough challenges this year to provide their customers with optimal playing conditions. Syngenta and Golf Course Industry magazine partnered together to showcase how Syngenta solutions and agronomic planning helped these superintendents condition their courses to perform at their best and recover quickly from stress.

Check out some of these highlights from superintendents featured in Golf Course Industry magazine in 2019. To find an agronomic program that fits your needs, visit GreenCastOnline.com/Programs. You can also order a free agronomic poster tailored for your region.

Iron sharpens iron
Ryan Segrue is five seasons into his run at Shorehaven Golf Club in Norwalk, Connecticut. “There’s so much talent and so much experience in the area,” Segrue says. “I’m a younger guy, so I’m constantly talking to the older guys, finding out what they’re doing and what they’re using, and just trying to stay on par.”

That is perhaps the biggest reason Segrue employs a suite of Syngenta products across the club’s compact hundred acres, from Ference® insecticide, to Daconil® Action™ and Secure® Action fungicides, to the more recent addition of Appear® II fungicide. “Since I switched to Appear II, the summer stress tolerance is huge because you can barely tell the stress is there. If you do get a little, you spray on Monday, you throw Appear II in the tank, by Wednesday, you feel like you’re back at square one with your greens healthy and ready to go for the next weekend.”

Learn more about how Segrue uses these solutions to control various turf diseases and enhance turf quality at the same time, as well as how he communicated with his members in removing nearly 100 trees.

Image source: Dan Murdoch Photography

Adapting to new stresses
Doug Norwell is deep into his 20th consecutive year as superintendent at the historic Camargo Club in suburban Cincinnati, Ohio. To combat dollar spot, which is manifesting more easily than ever thanks to Cincinnati heat indexes in the high 80s and low 90s that tend to stretch now into the middle of October, he introduced Posterity® fungicide last fall.

“And I was really pleased that, with the high disease we did have, we didn’t have many issues at all with dollar spot,” he says. “It gave me three weeks of control during heavy rains, high humidity, high heat.”

When he spotted the thinning and discoloration that are so closely tied to nematodes, Norwell consulted Syngenta territory manager Gregg Schaner, who first steered him toward disease testing the turf. “We sent in a nematode test and it came back really high,” he says, “at which point we had to start some treatments.”

Working with Schaner to develop a plan of attack, Norwell ultimately introduced a pair of nematicides into his program, including Divanem® nematicide. “This year, starting out,” he says, “we were able to control the population a lot better. The generations are closer and tighter together, so we started earlier and are doing a lot better.”

Learn more about his experience with Posterity, Divanem and other Syngenta solutions.

Image source: Guy Cipriano

Less is more
Craig McKinley, golf course superintendent at Bucks Run Golf Club in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, is one of the more resourceful superintendents in the Great Lake State. “We’re not a mom-and-pop shop by any stretch, but we’re budget-conscious. I try to run a pretty tight ship.”

He keeps a handful of what he calls “bangers” on hand — “the big clean-up sprays,” he says, “things I know are going to finish it off or get me back to where I need to be.” He uses 12 to 15 ounces per acre of Trimmit® 2SC plant growth regulator (PGR) to knock back Poa annua on the Providence bentgrass greens. He uses Primo Maxx® PGR on the PennLinks/PennEagle fairways, too, and mixes it with Trimmit 2SC on the greens just prior to tournaments, “just to shut everything down.” Banner Maxx® II fungicide is earmarked for fairways and tees. He used Posterity fungicide at Polo Fields — “I think I sprayed it down there September 4 and it made it clean all the way to the first week of November,” he says — and will return it to the rotation when he places his order for 2020.

Learn more about how McKinley uses these Syngenta tools to be a more effective problem solver.

Image source: Bucks Run Golf Club

‘Power of the molecule’​​​​​​​
When Elizer ‘Eli’ Rodriguez took over as the superintendent for the Royce Brook Golf Club in Hillsborough, New Jersey, he found himself confronting a significant dollar spot problem aggravated by a combination of spring rains and high humidity. Syngenta territory manager Lee Kozsey suggested the idea of doing a trial with Posterity, and Rodriguez was on board immediately, especially when Kozsey agreed with the idea of conducting it on two green approaches rather than small patches of fairways.

Rodriguez observed immediate results. “It cleaned (the dollar spot) right up,” he says. “We went almost a month without spraying anything and we had some nasty, nasty weather. I told Lee after we did the tests that I didn’t spray on that approach area at all the rest of the year. I just wanted to see something because I know it’s a different mode of action going into the plant. I wanted to see how long I could (go without spraying again) and didn’t see anything.”

Learn more about how Posterity worked well within Rodriguez’s agronomic program — and his budget.

Image source: Eli Rodriguez

All photos are either the property of Syngenta or are used with permission.

©2019 Syngenta. Important: Always read and follow label instructions. Some products may not be registered for sale or use in all states or counties and/or may have state-specific use requirements. Please check with your local extension service to ensure registration and proper use. Divanem is a Restricted Use Pesticide. Action™, Appear®, Banner Maxx®, Daconil®, Divanem®, Ference®, Posterity®, Primo Maxx®, Trimmit® and the Syngenta logo are trademarks of a Syngenta Group Company. Secure® is a trademark of Ishihara Sangyo Kaisha, LTD. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.