Turf colorants on Bermudagrass greens: How turf painting is done

Going green for winter: The how and why of turf colorants

HOW TO APPLY TURF COLORANTS TO BERMUDAGRASS PUTTING GREENS DURING WINTER

Geoponics turf colorants specialists and USGA Senior Agronomist Chris Hartwiger share how turf colorants are used by golf course superintendents

Why consider turf colorants?

  • Golf Course Superintendents often choose turf colorants to save money, water and time.
  • The new ultra dwarf Bermudagrass doesn’t need overseeding because of the high number of shoots per square inch.
  • The green color of the putting green with turf colorant applied creates a more distinct target for the golfer from the fairway.
  • Turf colorants mimic the color of a cool season grass without overseeding. Golfers often don’t even know they’re golfing on a warm season grass that is not growing much, if at all.
  • Agronomy: Agronomic benefits of turf colorants include the dark grass color, which retains heat and can extend turf growth in the fall and promote earlier green-up in the spring.
  • Weeds are much easier to control.
  • Turf looks great up close.
  • Check out this article for more reasons to paint grass using Endurant turf colorants.
  • The USGA recommends turf colorant versus the practice of overseeding. Check out this article and video on why turf colorant is USGA recommended.
Endurant Turf Colorant: The USGA recommends turf colorant versus overseed.

Endurant Turf Colorant looks amazing to golfers. The USGA also recommends turf colorant versus overseed.

HOW IT’S DONE

First determine your equipment and the best product by answering these questions

What is your strategy?

  1. Never let golfers see brown or dormant grass. This strategy is common in warmer or temperate climates. Endurant TE, with turf enhancer, is an optimal turf colorant for applying to actively growing grass. Buy now
  2. Wait until the grass stops all growth. This is more common in more northerly parts of the transition zone and colder winter climates. Endurant TC, Endurant FW for fairways, Endurant PR for a perennial rye look and other Endurant turf colorants offer professionals the top choices. Buy now. Compare the full line of Endurant Turf Colorants here.

Definitions:

Turf Colorant: Any material used to alter the color of the turf. Turf colorants include paints, pigments and dyes.

Paint: A turf colorant that remains on the leaf. Paint covers the leaf surface. Turf paint remains on the leaf surface and is often more expensive per gallon and is longer-lasting than pigments and dyes.

Pigment: A turf pigment is a colorant that penetrates into the leaf. Pigments are not reactive and non-soluble (meaning when poured into water, the substance remains at the bottom). Pigments generally last two to three weeks.

Dye: Turf dyes color the grass leaf by penetrating into the leaf. Turf dye IS reactive and it IS soluble. Dye is less expensive per gallon than paint. Dye lasts two to three weeks.

What type of colorant will you use?

  • If your strategy is to never let a golfer see brown or off-color turf, you will be better off using a dye or pigment.  If the turf is still growing while making the first few application of the season, some of the color from the dye or pigment will get removed with each mowing. Because of the lower cost per gallon, you can afford more applications. Endurant TE, with turf enhancer, is a great option that improves soil and plant health while adding color. Endurant TE is specially formulated for actively growing grass.
  • If your strategy is to wait for the grass to stop growing, then paints are preferred. Turf paint is more expensive at the outset, but turf paint lasts for months and may not even have to be applied a second time. You may consider Endurant TC, Endurant FW, Endurant PR or another Endurant colorant here. Read this article for help on choosing the best colorant.

LOOK Here for the full line of Endurant Turf Colorants

What equipment will you use to apply your turf colorant?

There are as many nuances to applying golf course turf colorants are there are superintendents. Everyone seems to have their own tricks. Check out this article for a few turf painting tips.

Some golf course superintendents and turf grass managers prefer to use a handgun. Others use a spray boom, choosing either a riding greens sprayer or a walking boom. Check the label for recommendations direct from the Geoponics manufacturer.

Spray boom: Generally, a boom or walking sprayer is faster, but there is a risk of creating streak patterns.

Handgun: Generally, a handgun creates a more uniform finished product and allows for better blending of edges, but it takes a little longer.

How turf painting is done at Memphis Country Club

The turf grass management team at Memphis Country Club has been painting greens for decades. They let the USGA come in and see how they do it.

Equipment: A sprayer with a 100-gallon spray tank and a one-inch hose; a spray gun with a large nozzle tip.

Rate of application: The turf colorant used was Endurant turf paint applied at a rate of 5 gallons of paint in 100 gallons of water.

Labor: It takes two to three team members to apply. One member uses the spray gun applicator. A member or two members can handle the hose.

Details: First, the paint was mixed with water at the maintenance facility. Then, they were off to the putting green. Because of the weight of the hose and the importance of moving quickly and freely, it can take one or two members to hold the hose off the ground to easily operate the applicator.

One advantage of the spray gun is that the edges can be tied in neatly with little to no spray on the collars. These guys did a great job with no overspray. The application was very uniform. Because they used the hand sprayer, the applicator can very easily touch up any areas that do not receive paint.

Time: A small putting green took 6 minutes to paint. It took 20-30 minutes to dry, making it ready for playing golf. The green color will remain for two to three months or until spring green-up because they chose the longest-lasting of the turf colorants.

 

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