April 06, 2016 at 3:00 pm

Transition zone:

  • No grass is always best; weather threatens survival most years.
  • Management skills keep getting better, while warm and cool season grasses keep getting better, often causing consultants to be wishy-washy and flip-floppy when selecting grasses for transition zone venues.
  • Perfection is the expectation, regardless of traffic, weather, or cost of repair.
  • If you grow it well, they will succeed in overusing it.

These are a few bullet points of Dr. A. J. Powell’s talk on Transition Zone in 2012.

As in 2012, the same holds true today in the transition zone. New technology available to turf managers has honed skills further. Cool season grass is traveling farther south. Warm season grass has become more winter hardy. Expectations of turfgrass are lofty and never reflect weather, traffic, or budget, especially weather.

2 years ago, John Ramsey at the Shady Hollow Golf Course, a public course in Central Kentucky, lost 9 of his 18 bermuda fairways to winter kill. The loss of play and revenue and the cost for repair prompted John to research a viable alternative in the event of another severe bermuda winter kill. I had witnessed sod being sold in Italy that was both bermuda and bluegrass, which gave me the idea of seeding Barenbrug Turf Blue HGT into bermuda. So, John harvested sprigs off of the other 9 fairways to repair the winter kill and it grew in to about 85%. Kentucky had a miserable summer that year for warm season grass. That fall Turf Blue HGT was planted in the renovated 9 fairways at a seeding rate of 2 lbs/1000. Shady Hollow GC plans on seeding Turf Blue HGT in the 9 remaining fairways this fall.

Dormant Bermuda on #9 fairway at Shady Hollow Golf Course 3/22/2016
Dormant Bermuda with Turf Blue HGT on #10 fairway at Shady Hollow Golf Course 3/22/2016

Roger Crenshaw
Sales Manager