Ultra Dwarf Bermudagrass for Golf Greens
• MiniVerde® Bermudagrass is a high shoot density, stoloniferous bermudagrass for production of high quality golf greens. MiniVerde® Bermudagrass tolerates continuous close mowing, has a dark green genetic color and excellent low temperature color retention.
• In mild climates, such as within 100 miles of the Gulf of Mexico, MiniVerde® Bermudagrass variety may make sufficient growth through the winter months so that overseeding is not required to provide an attractive winter color. MiniVerde® Bermudagrass variety is adapted for use on native soil, high-sand soil, and high CEC root zone mix with high sand content.
• MiniVerde® Bermudagrass will tolerate relatively high amounts of sodium and therefore is adapted for use with reclaimed water. MiniVerde® Bermudagrass also will perform best at soil pH levels of 5.5 to 6.5.
Grow-In Management Strategies
• Putting surface development will depend on rate of planting and fertilization during the first weeks after planting. When resurfacing existing greens, a well-prepared planting bed should be achieved. Complete kill of existing grass surfaces should be accomplished by fumigation or by repeat applications of non-selective herbicides. Planting rates typically range from 30 to 40 bushels per 1000 sq. ft. to ensure quality grow in without erosion or other problems.
• Soil tests should be obtained before soil preparation and planting to determine nutrients that may be inadequate for good plant growth. Fertilizers should be incorporated during soil preparation to correct any nutrient deficiencies. Frequency and amount of nitrogen fertilizer application should be reduced as the Mini Verde® Bermuda grass canopy approaches full closure.
• Irrigation should be applied to sprigs immediately after planting. Sprigs should be planted in moist soils or root-zones.
• Mowing should begin as soon as the sprigs stabilize the soil surface. A carefully adjusted, well-sharpened walk behind mower should be used with an initial bench height setting of 0.200 to .250 inches.
• Topdressing, using material consistent in physical characteristics to the existing root-zone, should be applied to newly planted greens to help produce a smooth putting surface. Light, weekly (about 0.02 inch) topdressing applications should begin 2 to 3 weeks after planting depending on rate of surface development.
• The process of planting and growing in newly planted golf greens often produces an organic layer at or near the soil surface. The thickness and depth of this organic layer will depend on sprigging rate and amount of topdressing applied during grow-in.
Long-Term Management Strategies
• Thatch accumulation is a concern in the management of all bermudagrass and bentgrass golf greens. It’s important to use a well-designed and implemented cultural strategy due to its superior shoot and stolon development. The cultural program for MiniVerde® Bermudagrass should focus on maintaining a fast, smooth putting surface while retaining healthy greens with an aesthetically pleasing appearance.
• Application of all nutrients except nitrogen should be based on soil tests. Plant tissue analysis may be used to fine-tune nutrient management programs. After grow-in, nitrogen applications should be reduced dramatically. MiniVerde® is very responsive to nitrogen applications and will produce excess growth and thatch as nitrogen applications increase.
• A successful nitrogen fertility program for MiniVerde® Bermudagrass should include the application of 4 to 5 pounds of N per 1000 sq. ft. annually using a granular slow release nitrogen carrier, such as a greens grade polymer coated urea, sulfur coated urea, or other nitrogen carrier possessing a similar mechanism of nitrogen release.
• MiniVerde® Bermudagrass will tolerate continuous mowing at 0.125 inches. MiniVerde® Bermudagrass will perform best at bed knife bench settings of from 0.1 to 0.157 inches. Daily mowing will be required to maintain a smooth, dense putting surface and to prevent scalping. Double cutting will also improve putting quality during tournament play. Mowing heights should be raised during periods of stress and to facilitate establishment of over seeded grasses.
• MiniVerde® Bermudagrass should be topdressed with a suitable topdressing material 2 to 4 times a month depending on growth rate. Dusting-type applications should be used to apply topdressing at a depth of 0.01 to 0.02 inches. MiniVerde® Bermudagrass will tolerate heavier topdressing applications that may be needed periodically, such as at overseeding, following deep vertical mowing and aerification, and during very active growth periods.
• MiniVerde® Bermudagrass should be aerified using vertically operating hollow tines at least three times a year. Tine diameter should be 0.25 to 0.375 inches. The specific tine diameter should be based on growth rate at the time of aerification.
• MiniVerde® Bermudagrass should be irrigated as needed to avoid moisture stress. Daily irrigation should be avoided. Irrigation application should be based on depth of rooting and water availability in the root-zone. The frequency of irrigation will vary with geographical location, soil type, and micro-environmental factors.
• Many golfers prefer the appearance and playability of golf greens overseeded with cool-season grasses such as perennial ryegrass, rough bluegrass, and fine fescues. MiniVerde® Bermudagrass can be overseeded easily in the fall with rough bluegrass if the nutrition guidelines and topdressing, vertical mowing, and aerification schedule provided above are followed.
• Our professionals can help you determine a preventative fungicide program that’s based on your climate to prevent disease and other issues. We can help you create a strong plan to ensure your Bermudagrass is well-managed for the long-term.