Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Bug Spray Harms Turf

It's that time of year again!

I have received a few questions about the mysterious patches of light tan turf that appeared over the weekend.  This is one turf problem that has a simple explanation:  Whenever the weather is muggy and buggy, we experience an outbreak of "bug spray disease."  Most golfers do not know that their insect repellent will harm turf, especially when directed at legs and ankles.  The overspray usually leaves a pattern of a green footprint or footprints surrounded by straw-colored injured turf. 

The solution to this problem is to spray legs and ankles on a cart path or other non-turf surface where the overspray will not contact grass.  Depending on conditions and the amount of spray on the grass, these spots usually recover in 1-4 weeks.  In extreme cases, though, they can result in the death of the patch of turf. 
Bug spray injury on a tee with a footprint in the center

Bug spray injury on a green collar

Can you see the footprint?

 Hopefully these pictures will help us all remember to use bug spray on the cart path.  I know it has slipped my mind in the middle of a mosquito attack.  Next time you golf on a buggy day, please help us educate others about the cause of the mysterious green footprint disease.

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