Scott McKittrick, Course Manager at Kirkhill Golf Club, has revealed how Attraxor has helped him to suppress Poa annua and has resulted in the greens playing firm, true and fast.
Kirkhill Golf Club is a parkland course, founded in 1910 and designed by the renowned course architect and five times Open winner James Braid. The course is located on the outskirts of the city of Glasgow in the South Lanarkshire area.
Scott originally joined Kirkhill Golf Club as an apprentice back in 1995 and was rewarded with the Course Manager position just seven years later. He now oversees a team of six members of staff and explained the importance of keeping standards consistently high.
“We are in a very competitive area and are surrounded by many golf clubs,” he said. “I’m pleased to say that we always get great feedback, and we hold our own. We must be different and entice people to join and that involves always being at the top of our game.”
Therefore, when he was recommended a potential solution to tackling a large percentage of Poa annua on the greens, he was keen to trial it.
“Our greens consist of approximately 60%-70% annual meadow-grass and because of this we would have to be aggressive with the turf. We would double cut and roll, and it took a lot of time and labour.
“I spoke to Ramsay MacGregor (Amenity Specialist for Agrovista Amenity) and he told me a lot about a product which he believed to be brilliant at supressing annual meadow-grass seed heads. After talking at length, I thought it would be great for us if it did exactly what it said on the tin.”
The product Ramsay introduced to Scott was Attraxor - a BASF product which has been shown to effectively regulate growth of managed amenity turf. The active substance, Prohexadione, inhibits the gibberellic acid pathway, which results in a reduction of turf height and turf biomass. Furthermore, as well reducing clippings it also suppresses the seed heads of Poa annua.
Key advantages include:
Scott initially applied Attraxor at the recommended minimum rate of 375 g/ha and was instantly impressed.
“The first time we tried it last year, the Poa was going crazy. We applied Attraxor, came in the next day and we couldn’t believe it. It looked as though it had literally wiped the whole Poa out. When you got close you could see that it was still there, but it was severely dishevelled. From that moment, we knew it was a game-changer.
“In that first year we mainly used the product to firefight the Poa seedheads, so as soon as we saw it was coming back, we hit it with Attraxor again. However, this year we have taken a more regimented approach; applying it at a higher rate of 500 g/ha. This has reduced the seed head production and has worked really well. The ball roll is no longer affected by the Poa, and the greens play brilliantly – they are exactly where we want them to be.”
By attending an Agrovista Amenity education day, Scott found that he wasn’t the only one reporting good results from Attraxor.
“The education days from Agrovista Amenity are important because they provide an opportunity to see how products and technology are developing,” he said. “There have been a couple of seminars that have focussed on Attraxor and it brought together lots of greenkeepers who have all been using the product. It was great speaking to them and finding out what rates they use, what they might be mixing it with and what results they are seeing.
“The general consensus was that it is a brilliant product and is great for supressing Poa annua seed head production.”
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