We asked experts from several leading companies: How does your company help sports turf managers implement efficient irrigation practices and subsequently maintain healthy turf?

Tom Matt
Northeast Regional Sales Manager/Kifco, Inc.

Being from the Northeast presents us with many challenges. One is the fact that we’re restricted on high school athletic fields to little or no fertilizer use. This limitation doesn’t leave us with many choices to provide healthy turf. We must rely on three alternatives: Aeration, overseeding and irrigation. Whether you’re irrigating a 300-foot lacrosse field or an entire multi-field complex, Kifco Water-Reels are the perfect tool for the job and are easily transported to irrigate multiple locations with a single unit. Kifco’s B-Series Water-Reels can cut the work and cost of irrigating your field in half. Most models can irrigate an entire field in a single, unattended pass, cost less than an in-ground system and require less maintenance. Kifco Water-Reels help maintain healthy turf with uniform watering on a regular basis.

Dean Mosdell
Field Technical Manager/Syngenta

A plant growth regulator, such as Syngenta’s Primo Maxx, can help turf improve its water use as well as health and visual quality of the turf. Treated turf retains water longer, thereby increasing its resistance to stresses such as heat, drought and even player/event traffic. Primo Maxx strengthens the root system, which allows it to better access available soil moisture and increases turf density, which reduces water loss from soil surface evaporation. When used as part of an agronomic program, in combination with Daconil Action or Heritage Action fungicides, Primo Maxx can help athletic field managers improve water efficiency for their turf and make irrigation more effective. The plant activator in the Action products regulates water loss through stomatal regulation and activates heat stress proteins in the plant. This can help save time and money while also improving the overall health of the turf.

Donn Mann
Specification Manager-Public Agency Account Manager/Rain Bird

Everything that grows needs water. But delivering and applying a precise amount of water to sports turf at just the right time is where art meets science. For a sports turf manager, successfully performing this task is critical to establishing and maintaining a healthy, high-performing and aesthetically-pleasing playing surface. Rain Bird strives to manufacture high-quality, robust products, including high-efficiency nozzles and rotors that deliver water with precision. By combining those products with our remote water management tools, sports turf managers can achieve the ultimate level of irrigation efficiency. For example, managing a sports turf irrigation system with products like our LNK Wi-Fi or IQ Central Control is an affordable way to add virtual eyes and ears onsite. High-tech control systems like these make it possible to modify irrigation schedules based on current weather conditions and other important factors when staff isn’t present on the property. In this way, Rain Bird continues to develop easy-to-use remote water management tools that help sports turf managers ensure the appropriate intersection of art and science.

Luke Yoder
National Sports Field Specialist/Ewing Irrigation

Ewing promotes deep and infrequent watering for athletic fields to encourage deep root growth and water conservation. Many factors impact this, including proper design and installation, pressure and root zone type. Ewing’s Certified Landscape Irrigation Auditor can assist with building a system that’s able to achieve desired results, or can audit an existing system to retrofit it. Retrofitting an existing system can require changing out nozzles, moving heads, increasing pressure for the system or modifying the existing root zone. Smart controllers, that irrigate based on evapotranspiration requirements from an on-site weather station, can also help you maintain healthy turf. They run multiple cycles to encourage deeper watering and have flow sensors that prevent the system from continuing to run if there’s a leak. Once your system is running efficiently, we recommend soil testing and letting our experts help you design a fertility program to maintain a resilient stand of turfgrass.