Crunching numbers to stretch a dollar

By |  September 29, 2016 0 Comments

oglebayOglebay Resort, Wheeling, W.Va., recently completed its final application of its BASF Elite Rejuvenation program. Just in time before it hosts the West Virginia High School Golf State Championships, Monday, Oct. 4 to Wednesday, Oct. 6.

The gathering of high school talent from around the Mountain State marks the end of the busy golf season. Golf Course Superintendent Nick Janovich looks back at the summer with “hundreds” of sales groups, ranging from groups of 16 golfers to 144 golfers, and an average of 12 shotgun events per month, and he is thankful for his participation in the BASF sponsored program.

Oglebay’s two 18-hole courses and 9-hole Par-3 course were tested this summer by the weather and an often-failing irrigation system.

“(This summer) was terrible, it was absolutely horrible,” says Janovich. “The staff is drained, I’m drained and even the golfers are drained. We had a substantial number of irrigation breaks and so we were crippled there for quite some time.”

The course’s superintendent since 2008 says he has been through similar summers before and because of the BASF products used on the course he saw a dramatic difference where a bulk on the program was centered, the greens.

“Our greens responded better this year than they have in the past on different programs and the plant was overall healthier,” says Janovich. “I’m not saying we didn’t stress. Of course the turf stressed but we didn’t quite go into stress as quick and we recovered from it a lot better on the greens.”

Janovich adds that the only instance of disease they saw this season was anthracnose but after further investigation showed that was human error.


Oglebay Superintendent Nick Janovich studies the label of his favorite BASF product, Xzemplar.

Oglebay owns two GPS sprayers that allow the staff to see exactly what was applied on its fairways and greens. According to Janovich, there was an application error on the green that had the anthracnose breakthrough where only about half the amount of product went down.

The BASF product that Janovich is coming out of this experience raving about is Xzemplar. He brings it up to everyone one he talks to and asks if they have tried it yet.

“We’re definitely going to incorporate (Xzemplar) into our program next year,” says Janovich. “It’s a little more pricey but it’s cost-effective. It’s providing you that instant control for an extended amount of time. The cost-per-acre of control is certainly beneficial when compared to other products.”


Janovich looking over one of his daily excel spreadsheets.

In mid-October Janovich plans to sit down and crunch all the information in his excel spreadsheets and find out his cost-per-acre-per-14-days and he may even figure his cost-per-day. The rough estimates that he has done show that it’s superior to his former program. Janovich says that if other superintendents did the same price-per-acre breakdown they would be surprised how much they could save.

“Really look hard at your program, even though it might be a program that’s worked or one you can afford. That doesn’t mean you’re stretching you dollar as far you can,” says Janovich. “Even if you don’t need to stretch your dollar on your chemical budget you can save still money on each spray, and then reallocate those funds somewhere else.”

sponsored-by-BASFPhotos: Oglebay Resort

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