Thursday, September 15, 2011

Hendren's Hyperbole! Episode 36 -- Losing Products You Depend On

Welcome back to Hendren’s Hyperbole! I had an opportunity this week to have dinner, drinks and watch some Monday Night Football with Golfdom Editor-in-Chief Seth Jones and Golfdom's Southern Sales Manager Jason DeSarle. It is great to have the opportunity to meet some of the people behind-the-scenes that make Golfdom the great magazine it is and I look forward to meeting the entire team at the Golfdom Summit in November.

I was looking for something to write about this week when I stopped by the new-and-improved to see what was happening in the world of turf diseases. That's when I saw this piece from Dr. Lane Tredway about the announcement the Gowan Company made this week that they are going to stop selling Rubigan on December 31st, 2012. The decision to remove Rubigan from the market is basically because there are cheaper alternatives for spring dead spot and sulfonylurea herbicides have made Rubigan obsolete for pre-emergence control of Poa annua on warm-season grasses.

Personally I have never worked on a course with bermudagrass greens and have only worked on a few courses that had warm season fairways or tees, so my experience with Rubigan from a professional standpoint is virtually nonexistent.

That being said, I can understand how losing a product you depend on and have absolute faith in could be a big blow to a yearly maintenance plan. Hopefully, with the introduction of products like Torque and Headway for the control of spring dead spot in fairways, tees, roughs the transition will be a smooth one.

According to Tredway, the control of spring dead spot on bermudagrass greens is a different story. Products like Headway and Torque have not shown to consistently control SDS on bermudagrass greens. Pathologists are continuing to experiment to find alternatives for Rubigan and the control of SDS on bermudagrass greens.

I would love to hear from some superintendents who depend on Rubigan for control of SDS on bermudagrass greens and how The Gowan Company’s decision to discontinue the fungicide will impact you in 2012 and beyond.

-- Matt Hendren

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