WaterSOLV & Orange Tree Golf Club
After a decade of seeing little results with the industry's conventional practices and prescriptions, Mickey Molton at Orange Tree Golf, is seeing a huge change in vitality, playability and infiltration after only 9 months on WaterSOLV. Most importantly he's saving time, headache and money and that's what WaterSOLV is all about.
"These greens are pushing 45 years old original 328 greens from the 70's that have been over-seeded every year. This time of year when we go through transition the Bermuda isn't quite ready so finding a product that helps with that transition is what I was really looking for.
I graduated from Clemson in South Carolina in 2008. I've been at Orange Tree for about 9 years.
We get a lot of competition from these trees, about 500 pine and 600 eucalyptus. They are competing for water. A lot of times they win the battle for water when it comes to the grass so we get compacted fairly quickly in the summer. Our soil is heavy clay, loamy with 55,000 rounds we do on average this place gets pounded.
Just aerification, slicing everything like that is not enough. This will be our first transition running the WaterSOLV Curative and so far so good. I’m really happy with the Bermuda percentage. We didn't even have to fertilize in May so I was able to skip a $5000 dollar granular application.
I didn't get on the product to save money or anything like that. It was strictly for soil improvement. We did not spray one iron and urea application all winter. And we were bailing hay almost every day.
We tried to mow in the mornings but couldn't we were getting so much yield because we would have to drag and disperse the clippings so we just started going to the afternoon mow. When you're pushing 230 rounds a day that’s difficult but we had no choice we were getting so much yield in the spring even in the winter so we had to make adjustments.
We were watering probably 30% under ET, so it was nice. Keep things firm without drying out so we were able to maintain that balance. We were able to keep it more uniform than the past. We're getting that deep hydration. We are able to put probes 14 inches in spots that there's no way we would have been able to do it before. And I've seen other guys able to do it. They say it in these testimonials also but it’s a fact I mean it drops right to the bottom.
Even in my dry areas that I've checked out I can still get the probe in 2-inches which in the past you would've had to take a hammer and pound it in. So that tells me that I'm still getting that penetration and that's gonna take just dialing in the irrigation a little bit better but the products still working even when it's not getting the full amount.
When we brought the slicer out the end of April we dropped them into the fairway on our first pass and the tractor bogged down they couldn't even pull the knives out of the soil the tines on our slicer are probably 7 or 8 inches and they dropped all the way to the mount and we were like 'Uh oh! Never had that before!" Typically the slicer is just going to roll across the top ground and maybe cut in an inch or so and I mean he had to switch gears on the tractor. He looked behind him and he thought he was stuck. It was late April. Things were perfect. So that's when we said 'Oh okay, haven't seen that before' so that was pretty cool to see.
Past 3 or 4 years on these pine trees have been getting a lot of blight you can see it in the tips of the tree and what I've seen since using the product especially coming into this year is all that blights pretty much gone away. So you can ride around the property and you can't really find a pine tree that's blighted like that. You can look in the neighbors yard and those pines are still blighted and stressed and then 50 yards into our property where its getting our water they look healthy as can be. They're just healthier.
The chemistry made sense to me. That's what it boiled down to. I've tried a lot of different products: wetting agents, sulfuric acid, N-pHuric acid, a ton of stuff; running gypsum constantly which is a real pain.
If it makes sense why not give it a try? It's something you gotta stick with like any pr