February 16, 2005
New Cell Phone Number
Please take note of our new cellular phone number: 218-368-5265. Our old cell number is in vacation mode until July. We have taken this action until we are satisfied that this new service will give us the coverage that our old service provided. Please use the new number when getting in touch with us until you hear otherwise.
This has been an extremely good year. We have found ourselves growing steadily every year, and I have many of you to thank for that. We are now international. This year we have picked up six golf courses in Germany through a firm there called GMC Golf Services. GMC began sending samples last April, and they - and the German courses the company serves-- have been very pleased with the results they have seen using our recommendations. We have placed those German golf courses on our web page under "Links." We look forward to a long relationship with the German company and courses.
New Test Packages
At the heart of our testing program have been 18 soil samples and an irrigation water sample. In the last few years, we have continued to add more and more paste tests and tissue testing to that list. As a result, we have decided to develop new test packages that include those services. We have decided to do the following new test packages for eighteen hole courses: Test package # 1: · 18 soil tests plus two paste tests at the time of testing. · Two soils tests and two paste tests during mid season. · Package cost will be $1700.00. Test Package # 2: · 18 soil samples plus 2 paste tests plus 2 tissue tests at the time of soil sampling. · Two soils tests plus two paste tests plus two tissue tests at mid-season. · Cost of this package will be $2150.00 We will continue to support the same 18-hole sample program as we have done before for $1400.00. For those courses outside of Minnesota mileage and expenses will need to be added. All soil packages still include the standard irrigation water test, and they reflect the additional cost of the Bray I test that is now needed to make phosphorus recommendations in the state of Minnesota.
Many of you have been reluctant to send in tissue samples on your own due to the time it takes to wash and dry the sample for shipping. Brookside Laboratories has now agreed to wash those samples so you don't have to. There will be an additional charge for washing samples that we will absorb should you elect to send in samples on your own.
Last fall we touched base with as many of you as possible, introducing you to the micronutrients available through Wolf Trax. These micro nutrients can be applied though your irrigation system, through your sprayer as a foliar, and because there is an electrical charge they will adhere to your favorite granular fertilizer. For those who are going to use these micros this year and to keep cost down, we are asking you to place your order to the Perham Co-op by April 1st. Contact person is Lenny Holmer. Phone # is 218-346-2355.
Bray I Test
Brookside Labs has been experimenting this past year with the colorimetric P tests (Bray I, Bray II, and the Olsen P). The Bray colorimetric tests were designed for acid soils, and become very unreliable with soils that have a pH greater than 7.0. That is when the Olsen test is recommended. The problem with the colorimetric tests is that they were designed to be accurate in the 0-50 ppm range. As P levels increased over the years it is not uncommon to find P values well over the 60 ppm range of which they were not designed for. To accurately report those values, the sample needs to be either modified, or diluted. This can be very time consuming and expensive. That is why most labs irgore that. At Brookside, they have been looking into a method that would allow them to report colorimetric tests up to 300 ppm accurately. We will keep you abreast of this procedure.
And finally for those of you who have not been to our Web page for some time, we have added a blog page. What that does is give me an opportunity to post articles and information that I feel would be of interest to all of you in the golf course industry. In a very short time I can post an article that can get out to the public immediately. We also have the ability to post pictures along with it. Another plus is that it gives you, the superintendents, the opportunity to ask questions of me, the responses to which I can post immediately. It can facilitate information exchange much more quickly, while making information available to others who may have the same questions. I want to thank all of you for your support during the past year. We consider it an honor to be working with all of you, and we look forward to working with you again this summer.