Autumn can be a stressful season for greens, as turf specialist Paul Brannan explains. Damp, cool weather conditions combined with the process of renovation provides ideal conditions for fusarium (microdochium patch) to thrive.
Paul comments that "disease management is one of the biggest challenges for greenkeepers in the UK. At the moment, greenkeepers will be trying to tackle fusarium, particularly anthracnose and dollar spot which is becoming increasingly prevalent." Paul goes on to say that "unfortunately in the UK, particularly further north, dealing with fungal turf disease is a constant battle; although at this time of year it does peak because there is a lot of stress on the greens. This is largely due to the renovation that tends to take place"
Stressed greens are open to disease attack and turf renovation provides an ideal environment for fusarium to thrive, making a strategic fungicide approach more important than ever. Paul explains that "after the golf season, the renovation work involves aeration and top dressing; these activities can put the plant under significant stress and increase the chances of fungal disease breaking out."
"If the green has a fast acting contact fungicide like Chipco Green on it, the chances of fungal disease are greatly reduced."
Bayer's Dave Orchard explains that "In turf situations, contact acting treatments tend to be favoured as they literally work 'on contact', clinging to the leaf surface without being absorbed into the plant tissue. This means that it doesn't rely on an actively growing plant to be effective,"
He goes on to say that another important consideration is the particular fungicide's mode of action, which will be 'preventative', 'curative' or 'eradicant' or occasionally all.
Dave says that "Only a curative or eradicant fungicide will treat an existing outbreak of disease and stop the developing disease already present. Preventative fungicides only inhibit new spore germination, and they should be applied well in advance of symptoms becoming apparent."
He adds that fungicides such as Chipco Green which have preventative, curative and eradicant effects are extremely versatile as they can be used either before or after the disease becomes visible to the naked eye.
Paul Brannan concludes by saying that "one of the other good things about Chipco Green is that it can be applied four times a year; a lot of other fungicides can only be used once or twice, depending on the season. Chipco is one that greenkeepers can use all year round."
Chipco Green is available in the Pitchcare Shop