GEOPONICS PRODUCTS give Maryland golf courses competitive edge, says management
Jon Lobenstine of Potomac, MD, oversees nine golf courses in Montgomery County, including Falls Road Golf Course where he serves as the superintendent.
When did you first learn of Geoponics products and how?
Last Spring, I saw a post on the Geoponics Facebook page (www.Facebook.com/Geoponics) showing the results of the products increasing water movement on the greens at a golf course. I went to the Geoponics website and researched some more. The You Tube videos (www.Geoponics.TV) with the wetting test demonstrating Penterra really intrigued me. I spoke with a Geoponics representative and he was very knowledgable. I was very impressed.
What products did you try? Why do you use Geoponics?
Agriox, Penterra and HydraHawk. Growing grass or a nice lawn can be difficult. Growing grass on a golf course is even more difficult. The low height of an 1/8 inch isn’t natural. You’re constantly putting it under stress, add weather, disease, insects… You’re looking for anything to give a competitive advantage. These products are giving us that extra competitive edge. They make our job easier.
Can you tell me a little about the specific greens and soil conditions you’re working with and the challenges?
The biggest challenge we have are old push up greens on native soil, which is heavy clay, mixed with sandy soil in some areas. Water just didn’t move through the soil profile after heavy rains.
What results did you see with each of the Geoponics products you used?
Penterra (Penterra.net) is pushing the water through the soil. It worked better and more consistantly than anything I’ve ever tried. This season was the most noticeable by steadily keeping the surface firm.
A lot of wetting agents are tablets where you have to keep supplementing with hand watering. We didn’t have that. We didn’t have any localized dry spots, no hydrophobic areas for a full season. The greens were consistant and predictable like never before.
The Penterra worked so well at pushing the water through that we added HydraHawk (HydraHawk.com) on the sand-based greens to help hold more moisture in the top few inches.
Agriox (Agriox.com) is really great. One of the reasons we added it was that we had more rain than usual this spring. We had black layer in the pushup greens because the soil was very anaerobic. The increase in performance, the color, the vigor was almost instantaneous with Agriox. We decreased our use in fertilizer. We eliminated the black layer. There’s definitely something to it. Agriox is pretty neat because it has a long-term release. So we had the Penterra getting the water through the soil and the Agriox was as if we were spraying oxygen through the soil.
How about the cost and value of the products?
The cost is right where it needs to be. It’s an affordable choice for me. I’m not quite at that point where I can afford to use it on the fairways every two weeks, but the greens are the most important. That’s where it affects playability the most.
How about the service with an out-of-state Geoponics sales representative?
The service relationship is outstanding. I must have called the rep 15 times at least last year. He’s very quick to get to me and very knowledgeable.
Whether a consumer growing a garden or lawn, or a professional managing the growth of plants or turf, you may learn more about how Geoponics products create sustainable ecologies that harness the natural reactions that make life on this planet possible by visiting www.GeoponicsCorp.com and keeping up on the news at www.Facebook.com/Geoponics.