How well would your car function without regular servicing?

The same principle applies to your golf course

The disease outbreaks in the past few months are a good reminder of how important your cultural practises, nutrition and sound IPM are.

Cultural Practises

Spike (6mm) and dust every 21 days from September to April (in your growing season). This allows oxygen exchange, protect the crown of the plant against disease and creates a firm and smooth playing surface.

Hollow-tining twice a year with a 12mm tine and backfilling with USGA construction sand (not maintenance sand) is really important to keep your greens draining and functioning well. If your greens were not build with USGA sand, then use the closest match you can find. Consol has a mine in the Cape and KZN, and Greens Sands in the Gauteng/Mpumalanga region. I have worked closely with Thomas Turf Laboratories in the USGA since 1999 and they are brilliant at physical sand testing. They give you a report on how your green is functioning and which topdressing sand matches your profile.

Eliminate the guess work. Take the pain of spring and autumn treatment to produce your ultimate playing surface.

Plan and protect

We draw up detailed pest management programmes for every turf type and region of South Africa to ensure your soil is healthy and that you are not caught off guard.  By the time you see the symptoms on the surface you are in the eradicant stage of the life cycle – it is very costly and tough to control a disease at this point.

Nematode testing should also be done annually and once again, please do not use Nemacur and wipe out all your beneficial nematodes and microbes. You need your microbes to break down your organic matter and aerate your soil. Dr. Mieke Daneel is a world renown nematologist who understands turf (one of the few in the world) and does testing and recommendations.  We are presenting a paper on nematodes in Japan in 2025 and you are welcome to join the study at no cost – contact


Plants do not like a rollercoaster ride on nutrition.

Test at least 3 greens every 6 months – I like the Talking Turf test I have done with Labserve since 1997.

When I started as a superintendent the fertilizer reps would come and visit me at Leopard Creek and when a gentleman told me “maar op die piesangs” I decided to pursue my passion and study soils to ensure I make sound decisions.

Feel free to send or your latest soil results (test 3 greens every 6 months and test 3 tees and fairways annually).

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Integrated Pest Management

Shortcuts cost you more in the long run as is so evident at many of our clubs.

When a patent expires on a product the opposition has access to the active ingredient, but not the formulation, which ultimately makes the product available to the plant. I have worked closely with Syngenta on their turf range since my internship at Pebble Beach in 1996.

Their commitment to R & D as well as the environment are what made me choose this company. The Syngenta Turf fungicides available from Talking Turf in Southern Africa will not kill your beneficial microbes or insects.  We need to protect the good guys – take care of the soil and it will take care of you.

Let’s be proactive to produce your ultimate playing surface.

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