Rescue for bowling green turf quality

Mark Sandersonin Industry News

Managers of bowling greens are now able to utilise the innovative Syngenta selective herbicide, Rescue, to effectively remove Ryegrass, whilst leaving fine turf species including Fescues and Poa annua unaffected.

Bowls woods.jpgA new approval for the Syngenta selective herbicide, Rescue, will now enable bowling green managers to improve turf quality and enhance the consistent roll of bowls woods by removing coarse Ryegrass, whilst leaving fine turf species unaffected. The Rescue Programme can help to rejuvenate fine turf playing surfaces faster, more cost effectively and with longer lasting results than existing cultural control techniques.

Since its launch last year, Rescue has revolutionised quality turf management for golf greenkeepers and course managers on links, heathland and parkland courses across the UK.

Syngenta Turf & Landscape Technical Manager, Dr Simon Watson, highlights invasive Ryegrass poses a particularly serious problem on bowling greens, ruining the playability of fine turf surfaces and the visual appearance. "Now there is the opportunity to quickly and effectively reduce the damaging effects of clumpy Ryegrass, without recourse to expensive mechanical verticutting, laborious hand weeding or even re-turfing. Rescue is an entirely new class of selective herbicide chemistry for the turf sector and is only available in the UK," he said.

"From the outset it was evident that there was immense interest in Rescue from bowling green managers. With further research, detailed analysis and discussion with the regulatory authorities it has been possible to attain a full label approval for the use of Rescue on bowling greens," added Dr Watson. Details for use on bowling greens are the same as for use on golf greens and tees.

Dr Watson advises the experience gained with Rescue since its launch indicates initial treatments of well-established Ryegrass populations in bowling greens this spring could prove especially effective in weakening plants and making them easier to manage over the summer. "Whilst small plants are generally killed with the first application, any regrowth on well-established treated plants is typically soft, less clumpy and cleanly mown to immediately improve surface quality. A follow-up autumn application on large Ryegrass plants that were treated in the spring has been shown to give even higher levels of kill."

He advocates a spring treatment can also work especially well in conjunction with Fescue oversowing programmes, where sufficient new growth can be quickly established to replace the Ryegrass removed and rapidly restore a fine playing surface.

Ryegrass in Fescue mr.jpgDr Watson reiterates the importance of grass species identification before Rescue treatment. "The unique herbicide activity of Rescue is incredibly effective in removing weed Ryegrass and, in practice, has been shown to eliminate some other coarse grasses, including Yorkshire Fog. Green managers must assess the botanical composition of their sward, and manage accordingly for the turf cover that will be removed.

"However, with appropriate overseeding and other Integrated Turf Management practices, there is now the exciting opportunity to remove weed Ryegrass and rejuvenate great playing surfaces far more effectively," he added.

Rescue is approved for up to two applications per season, at a rate of 1 - 1.33 l/ha in spring or 1 l/ha in the autumn. Rescue can be applied by conventional sprayers, pedestrian sprayers or knapsack. Once Rescue is dry on the leaf here is no need for any restriction or interruption in play on the bowling green following application.

To help turf managers get the best possible results with the Rescue Programme, Syngenta has produced a range of support tools and information, including a novel Grass Identification Guide - which uniquely focuses on identifying grasses in a tightly mown sward situation typically encountered on bowling greens.

Full details and information are available on the dedicated Syngenta turf web site:

Available in the Pitchcare Shop

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