While writing this article for the May edition of Turf Pro, snow is still lying in many areas throughout the UK and Ireland. We have been subject to a savage Easterly wind for weeks that has dried the ground out so much that hill fires have been burning in the South Wales valleys and the glens of Scotland. And to cap it all, rainfall has been minimal.
So talking of Plant Growth Regulators (PGR’s) may be a bit optimistic, even though it does give Greenkeepers extra breathing space if cuts are missed due to rainy summers as we’ve experienced in recent years.
But in this industry, optimism is a necessary requirement for all of us. So I’m sticking my neck out and relying on mother-nature to redress the balance, give a little more heat, moisture and in general, be kind to all of us working in the sports turf industry.
There have been many PGR’s throughout the past decades, and maleic hydrazide was one of the first. (It has an ‘Off-Label recommendation on grass until Dec2013). This chemical was more of a growth retardant, as opposed to now-a-days, where we refer to trinexapac-ethyl as a growth regulator.
The first trinexapac – ethyl was Primo Maxx, marketed by Everris and made by Syngenta.
Since losing its patent, more generics are on the market, including Clipless from Headland Amenity, Pure Max from Countrywide etc.
These PGR’s make good turf better, not bad turf good. There are so many issues governing when to use the products, including the condition of the grasses at the time of application. If applied in drought situations, the plant may shut down and future growth may be a problem. A nitrogen fertilizer and an iron should be applied on ‘fairway ‘ type turf for aesthetic reasons.
The right application rate is important. Modern Turf Managers have integrated TE as an important part of their summer programmes. TE reduces inter- nodal growth, making the grasses thicker, it improves tillering, thus making the plant stronger and more able to resist disease, the thicker sward also increasing competition with weeds , less arisings, less mowing, thus giving more staff- flexibility and reducing fuel and machinery costs.
As you can see, this is another excellent example of a herbicide that brings nothing but benefits to the user and increases the sportsman’s’ perception of the playing surface.
Advice must be sought from BASIS qualified personnel as to the most efficient use of trinexapac- ethyl in your particular situation. CWC are well placed throughout the country to help with advice, and apply the products into the bargain, supplying all the necessary COSHH and Risk Assessments and looking after the safe disposal aspect of pesticide application.
Let’s hope we have a great summer of sport, and weather commensurate with that.
For more information, please contact Complete Weed Control’s National office on 01325 324 277 or visit www.completeweedcontrol.co.uk. You can also follow CWC on Twitter @CWCLimited for much more news, reviews and insightful views.