What I learned at my first Golfdom Summit

By |  December 7, 2017 0 Comments

As a newcomer to turf management, I’ll admit that the prospect of Golfdom Summit was daunting. Four days of meeting with 40 seasoned golf course superintendents and representatives from 15 turf equipment companies and product suppliers? That might be a lot, even for an industry veteran.

It was a whirlwind couple of days. Here are some things I took away from my first Summit.

Publisher Craig MacGregor, Golfdom columnist Joe Gulotti, Newark (Del.) CC and Chris Dalhamer, CGCS, Pebble Beach Golf Links display a Golfdom Summit pin flag during the golf scramble.

Superintendents love to talk turf.
These guys were more than happy to school a newbie on basic greenkeeping, and on the major issues they face on a daily basis. I learned about ideal mowing and rolling regimens and monster restoration projects. Not to mention tough governmental restrictions on pesticides and water, difficult conversations with club members about course conditions and trying to find a few decent people to fill out their crews. I learned there’s a ton weighing on the minds of these dedicated guys, on top of the technical aspects of their jobs.

 

The outdoor demo area, aka the Reunion Resort driving range.

There’s a lot of incredible technology available these days.
Soil moisture monitoring, GPS guided spray technology and smart spreaders are among some of the advancements that sponsors were talking about in their boardroom presentations, one-on-one meetings and outdoor demos. Add to that some pretty powerful battery-operated equipment and innovations in plant chemistry, and there’s plenty out there that can help superintendents build and maintain quality turf.

And here’s a pro tip, for those of you who didn’t attend the Summit: Figure out the ideal angle on your blower for the specific job you’re trying to accomplish. If you’re off by 15 degrees or more, you’re wasting power and adding more than two and a half hours of labor to your day. Thanks for blowing our minds, Turfco!

 

These guys play as hard as they work.
After meetings and presentations finished out for the day, Summit attendees played poker, showed off their skills playing bags and threw back some cold ones. It was great to sit around the fire pit and talk to these guys.

Thanks to our amazing superintendents who traveled to Orlando from all over the country, and a special thanks to the 15 Golfdom Summit partners who made this year’s event possible: Capillary Concrete, Frost Inc., Healthy Grow, Jacobsen, Lebanon Turf, Nufarm, Oregon Outdoor Power Equipment, PBI-Gordon, POGO Turf Pro, Primera, Quali-Pro, SipcamRotam, Smithco Inc., Turfco and WinField United. Can’t wait to do it all again next year!

Photos: Golfdom

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