The latest research and innovation in turf technology on display at Wentworth. Making the very best use of every input on the golf course was the key message at the recent Turf Science Live event held at Wentworth Golf Club.
The two-day event, co-presented by Everris, Syngenta and Ransomes Jacobsen, provided golf course managers and greenkeepers with the opportunity to see the latest research and technical innovations in turf technology.
Held on a section of Wentworth's immaculate Executive 9-hole course, the event attracted in excess of 170 visitors over the two days and consisted of seven stations, all highlighting best practices on the golf course.
Dr David T Jones, an ecologist at The Natural History Museum and Karl Parry, Course Manager at Denbigh Golf Club, were the educators sponsored by Ransomes Jacobsen, a Textron Inc company.
Dr Jones provided a highly visual and entertaining presentation on the negative effects of earthworm casts on fine turf including 'charming' earthworms out of soil using a solution of mustard power and water.
Karl Parry presented research findings from his project that looked at the affect on ball roll, trueness and smoothness when changing the frequency of cut using Jacobsen's Eclipse 322 hybrid greens mower.
From Syngenta, Dr Simon Watson highlighted new techniques to counter the increasing risk of damage caused by Fairy Ring and Take-All, along with demonstrating the combined plant health effects of Heritage Maxx and Qualibra. Rod Burke and Dr Ruth Mann of STRI provided visiting greenkeepers with research-backed practical solutions to counter issues of shade on tees and greens, including tailored Primo Maxx programmes to compensate for any lack of light.
The effervescent Henry Bechelet, ably assisted by Mick Fance, gave a presentation on the assistance Everris gave to Kenny McKay in producing consistent and firm greens for this year's BMW PGA Championship.
Henry presented the results of the sampling carried out by the Wentworth greens staff in the run up to the Championship that helped prevent inconsistencies developing while they firmed the greens up for the event.
Lewis Blois and Ian Lacy explained the technology behind modern fertiliser coatings and described how they control the nutrient release patterns to optimise turf health and performance.
They then demonstrated the importance of calibrating equipment correctly to ensure the products deliver optimum results.
The final station was hosted by Kenny McKay, who provided an intriguing look at the renovation programme of the West course following the BMW event.
Commenting at the end of the event, Hanbury Manor Golf Course and Estates Manager, Stan Power said, "Turf Science Live is, for me, one of the most valuable days out.
It's great to hear about the latest ideas and innovations direct from some of the leading experts, and to be able to see them in practice. It also gives the chance to discuss the implications with other greenkeepers and how we might implement the ideas on the course. I would always recommend a visit to anyone who has the chance to attend."
Gina Putnam, International Marketing Manager at Ransomes Jacobsen, speaking on behalf of all three parties said,
"This is our third Turf Science Live event and, without doubt, the most successful to date.
All three businesses presented an interesting mix of research and technical innovation, which was well received by everyone who attended. Also a special mention to the staff at Wentworth, spearheaded by Kenny McKay and supported by the hospitality team, who helped ensure the event passed off with maximum efficiency."
Images: Dr David T Jones 'charming' earthworms out of the soil with a solution of mustard powder and water.
Karl Parry presents his findings on frequency of cut using a Jacobsen Eclipse 322.
Mick Vance of everris explains the beneftits of the new syngenta spray nozzles.
Kenny Mackay answers a question form one of the delegates.