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Hole in one at BTME for Sherriff

Hole in one at BTME for Sherriff: Sherriff Amenity will be on Stand 164 in the Blue Zone at BTME 2020 and visitors can look forward to new product information, refreshments and will also be able test their golfing skills on the putting green.

Visitors will be able to pick up a copy of the recently launched 2020 product brochure – which features an all-encompassing range of products for turf managers.

Hole in one at BTME for Sherriff

As the industry leading supplier of professional products and specialist advice, Sherriff Amenity has an extensive range of products and solutions which are trusted by turf managers throughout the UK and beyond.

The new 2020 brochure contains in-depth information on the complete range of products which includes granular fertilisers such as the Marathon range and Evolution range; liquid and soluble fertilisers such the E2 Pro range and iNTrench range, wetting agents featuring the highly regarded Aqua-Zorb; herbicides, fungicides, grass seed and much, much more.

The brochure will also contain valuable advice on how to get the best results from the products, including recommended period of use, directions for use and application rates.

Sherriff Amenity’s established team of BASIS qualified Amenity Specialists, will be on hand throughout the event to provide professional technical advice and recommendations based on each customer’s specific requirements.

On the stand, why not also grab a much-needed coffee from the barista team and go for glory on the putting green?

For further information, please contact Sherriff Amenity on 01638 721 888 or visit www.sherriffamenity.com

For more news and insightful views, you can follow Sherriff Amenity on Twitter @SherriffAmenity.

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John O’Gaunt’s Hole Refresh

John O’Gaunt’s Hole Refresh: John O’Gaunt Golf Club in Bedfordshire have refreshed a par three hole at the course, enhancing it with a 1500m2 lake featuring two Otterbine fountains and eight Toro Infinity sprinklers.

Course manager Nigel Broadwith explains the reasons behind the renovation of hole four: “Constantly improving the two courses is of paramount importance to the long-term success of the club. The fourth hole on the John O’Gaunt course has always been a picturesque hole, however, its location on a floodplain meant it was susceptible to flooding. The renovations included raising the fairway level to take this into account, as well adding to its beauty with a new lake.”

John O’Gaunt's Hole Refresh

Nigel, and head greenkeeper Kevin Armstrong, chose two Otterbine Sunburst aerating fountains, from UK distributor Reesink Turfcare. Both are three horsepower units but one has a one horsepower impeller for the smaller end of the lake and the other has a two horsepower impeller for the wider end. The reasons for these choices were primarily aeration, to the keep the water clean and clear all year round, and secondarily for aesthetic purposes.

Nigel continues: “We wanted to make this lake a feature of the course and therefore wanted an aerating system with the capabilities to present a fountain. The lake is in a slightly windy position and what appealed especially with the Sunburst is the fact that the fountain has a heavier droplet, which means the wind wouldn’t blow the droplets away and disrupt its presentation. It’s a lovely addition not just to the hole, but the course.”

Four years ago, John O’Gaunt’s Carthagena course had its irrigation system updated to Toro Lynx and Golf Decoder Controller irrigation system, operated with dual trajectory series full or part circle sprinklers, and as that concluded it became the turn of the John O’Gaunt course. This time Nigel chose Infinity:

“The system on Carthagena has performed brilliantly,” he says. “It was always the plan that we would move straight on to updating the John O’Gaunt course sprinklers after Carthagena, and as we finished Infinity launched in the UK. I was immediately impressed with their accessibility for maintenance and made the decision that we should try this new technology on the John O’Gaunt course.”

The addition of four Infinity sprinklers on the fairways and four on the greens too, means that Nigel is half way through renovating the 18 holes on the John O’Gaunt course with Infinity. Nigel says he aims to have the remaining nine updated within the next three years.

According to Robert Jackson, irrigation field sales manager at Reesink, this is a classic example of how the little things can make big differences, he says: “The inclusion of a fountain in a new or existing lake can so easily elevate it to being a beauty spot. Similarly, the John O’Gaunt course installation shows how innovation through renovation can be easily and gradually applied to an irrigation system.”

If either appeals, Reesink Turfcare is just a phone call away on 01480 226800 to helping make this happen.

For more information, visit: reesinkturfcare.co.uk

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Makita’s Hole-In-One

Makita’s Hole-In-One: The greenkeepers at Chipping Sodbury Golf Club in Bristol have praised Makita’s fast, powerful and brilliantly handy grass shears.

The club has recently had several new revetted bunkers installed on The Beaufort Course.  These are a common feature on a vast number of courses across the British Isles where the embankment of the bunker is faced with masonry, or other material such as sods, placed on top of each other to create a layered effect that helps to fortify the bunker.  It was advised that a traditional line trimmer could not be used to maintain the edge of the bunkers as in doing so would risk damaging the face of the bunkers.  An alternative needed to be sought and following a demonstration of the Makita 18v LXT Grass Shears, Head Greenkeeper John Keenaghan purchased two of the units to help keep the revetted bunkers in tip-top condition to remain in-keeping with the rest of the beautifully manicured parkland course.

Makita's Hole-In-One

John Keenaghan says:  “These Makita grass shears do a fantastic job and are exactly what we were looking for.  We will be recommending them to fellow greenkeepers that have revetted bunkers.”  The Makita cordless grass shears can be seen in action at the golf club in this video https://youtu.be/arP1DsAa2Jc

The Beaufort Course, designed by Fred Hawtree, was opened in 1971 and subsequent maturing, development and care has achieved a superb course which presents a challenge to all levels of golfer.  Chipping Sodbury Golf Club is situated in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty at the foot of the Cotswold Hills and adjacent to the historic, characterful 17th century market town of Chipping Sodbury.

Makita’s latest offering of the 18v grass shears is the DUM604Z.  The shear has a double blade action, a cutting width of 160mm, and a 3-stage cutting height adjustment from 15 – 25mm for really fine work.  With an ergonomically designed soft grip handle and light in weight at just 1.8kg, including the battery, user comfort is guaranteed while low noise emissions will ensure Sunday morning peace and quiet.  This model is available as a body only machine and a compatible hedge trimmer attachment is also available that has a tool-less blade change.

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Biochar Trials Hit Hole In One

Biochar Trials Hit Hole In One: Okehampton Golf Club, Dartmoor National Park, trials enriched biochar to eliminate fungicide use.

A new turf improver with roots in traditional green keeping is arming Course Managers with a natural alternative to ever restricted fungicides and chemical fertilisers.

Biochar Trials Hit Hole In One

Carbon Gold’s Enriched Biochar Soil Improver is a horticultural form of charcoal blended with optimum levels of fungi, bacteria and trace minerals, and is approved by EU certification bodies for organic growing. It was common practice a century ago to use charcoal to keep greens porous and firm, and to improve the appearance and colour of turf. Now, innovative Greenkeepers are ‘rediscovering’ the benefits of biochar – using it to eliminate fungicides completely, and reduce chemical fertiliser use significantly.

David Chammings, Amenity Specialist for Sherriff Amenity, a division of Agrovista UK, has been the Chairman of Greens at Okehampton Golf Club for the past 3 years. His position and experience allow him to trial innovative techniques on different areas of the course, and he approached Carbon Gold, keen to be the first to trial biochar on golf course greens.

The club, established in 1913, has been through significant changes in the last 5 years, adapting to an ever-evolving industry and stricter demands, such as the revocation of insecticides and the withdrawal of many fungicides under ever tighter EU regulations. In 2016, Stuart Entwhistle joined as Course Manager, and together he and David devised a trial outline to test how Carbon Gold’s enriched biochar would perform on specific areas of the course, in the hope of finding a new solution to old problems.

The Okehampton trials

Locations and issues:

The 5th green – a very sandy newly-extended area of the green, which leaches nutrient heavily.

The 12th green – the ‘disease indicator’ green, placed in the Ockment Valley. It is surrounded by trees and receives very little winter sunlight.

Application:

Enriched Biochar Soil Improver was applied in March 2017. Both greens were 13mm hollow tined to a depth of 100mm. 1kg per m2 of Carbon Gold’s Enriched Biochar Soil Improver was brushed in – in the same way sand is commonly brushed into turf – over an area of 100m2 per green.

Outcomes

20% fertiliser reduction

Okehampton currently fertilise the greens five times a year.

They continued to fertilise the trial areas, at the same rate as the rest of the greens, but found that in the summer the 5th green looked healthier and was holding nutrient a lot more efficiently so decided to miss an application on this area. Three weeks later it was not evident that a feed application had been missed, and the trial area looked as healthy as the rest of the green. There is a definite increase in nutrient holding capacity in the sandy rootzones, and a 20% reduction in fertiliser use overall.

100% fungicide reduction

The fungal disease being treated in the Okehampton Carbon Gold trials is fusarium patch (Microdochium nivale) – common to golf courses across the world. They currently apply fungicide to all of the greens on the course twice a year, sometimes up to four times a year. To treat the whole 7000m2 course costs £700 per application – Okehampton’s annual fungicide bill alone can reach £2800.

No fungicide was required on either of the trial areas for the whole of the year, meaning Carbon Gold’s enriched biochar delivered an impressive 100% reduction in fungicide use.

Water retention & drainage

Water retention and drainage was another factor that David and Stuart were keen to address. Summer 2017 was relatively wet, however the treated greens performed well. The trial areas drain better and faster than before when needed, but also hold on to the moisture in prolonged hotter weather.

The trial greens were more resilient over the course of the year – whatever the seasons threw at them – during the hot dry periods they held onto the moisture better and were visibly healthier. In wetter periods they did not flood, were firmer, dryer and remained playable. This is a great advantage for the club during the wet months – if there is too much rain the course can flood and the greens become un-playable, which leads to closure and loss of revenue. With the use of Carbon Gold’s enriched biochar, this can now be avoided.

Next steps

David is keen to step up his trials to cover two entire greens which they will monitor throughout 2018.  Application of the product would normally take place during the maintenance times of spring and autumn. Due to significantly reduced requirements of fungicides, fertilisers and irrigation, he believes they would soon see a return on investment.

These enlightening trials show an optimum application rate of 1kg/m2, which equates to £1 per m2. As enriched biochar is a one-off application that remains in the soil indefinitely, and has proven to deliver up to 100% reduction in fungicide and 20% reduction in fertiliser inputs, it’s a hole in one for any discerning Course Manager.

David’s has great confidence in his new discovery – he says he would “highly recommend the use of Carbon Gold’s enriched biochar to all Greenkeepers & Groundsmen for the wider benefits of the product.” He even goes so far as to say, “I believe that biochar will be used throughout this industry in the not too distant future.”

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