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Turf Laying is an Art

Every industry has its iconic characters. In the UK few would argue Old Tom Morris, Jim Arthur and Walter Woods are not icons among greenkeepers. In the US for me we have Sherwood Moore, Oscar Miles, Ted Woehrle, and my personal favorite, Wayne Otto. In Australia there is Claude Crockford.   Crockford was the greenkeeper at the Royal Melbourne for 40 years from the 1930s to the 1970s. In 1993 he published The Complete Golf Course: Turf and Design as both an homage to Royal Melbourne and prac

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Jim Koppenhaver of Pellucid Corp on the current state of the golf industry

In yet another fascinating discussion with Jim Koppenhaver of Pellucid Corp, we chat about the current state of the golf industry, including: reduction and absorption in golf facilities and businesses that serve them comparisons with retail and restaurant industries that are also cyclical industries warning signs for superintendents that a facility might be in financial trouble the change in golf's consumer base and requirements, including digital technology n

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Dr. Al Turgeon, professor emeritus at Penn State

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with Dr. Al Turgeon, professor emeritus at Penn State University, about his career evolvement from the golf course to Viet Nam and through academia, with a brief stint in industry in between his various academic stops around the country.   Take this whirlwind tour as Al and I reminisce about all the big names in the history of turfgrass science, many of whom rubbed elbows at some point with Dr. Turgeon. He even hired Dr. Milt Engelke at Texas

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Mike Huck: The California drought is over... what's next?

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with Mike Huck of Irrigation and Turf Services in Orange County, CA, one of the foremost experts in water availability, usage, regulation and what it all means for the golf course industry.    We talk about the end of the California drought, trends in overseeding, painting and turf reduction; costs of treating vs transporting water; use of hand-held vs in-ground soil moisture sensors, among other things.    We wind up with what we h

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Real Science Behind Climate Change, with Dr. Art DeGaetano

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, Frank Rossi chats with Dr. Art DeGaetano of Cornell University about the underlying science of climate change. Dr. DeGaetano is a professor in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at Cornell University and Director of the Northeast Regional Climate Center (NRCC) at Cornell.   Art's PhD in climatology and horticulture from Rutgers uniquely positions him to understand and explain climate influences on man-made and biological systems.

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

A "Ted" Talk with the Legendary Ted Horton, CGCS

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with Ted Horton, CGCS, legendary superintendent at Winged Foot and Westchester Country Club as well as VP of Resource Management at Pebble Beach, and board member of Audubon International. Now living in California, Ted is is currently a Sr. Consulting Superintendent for Brightview, specializing in environmental stewardship; golf course safety, security and risk management; tournament preparations; turfgrass agronomics and the administrative functions o

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Government Affairs update with GCSAA

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, Frank chats with Chava McKeel, Bob Helland and Michael Lee of the GCSAA Government Affairs staff about current issues trending on national, regional and local legislative agendas.   Presented by DryJect and Intelligro/Civitas.  

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Steve Mona of the World Golf Foundation on the State of the Game

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with Steve Mona, CEO of the World Golf Foundation and previously CEO of the GCSAA. Topics include the rebound of the Tiger Effect and it's influence on the "green grass channel"; getting new golfers to the point of playing well enough that they enjoy the game; making golf more accessible (and user friendly) at every level of facility; altering perceptions of the game among potential new golfers; effects of course design and conditioning on the experien

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Talking Bluemuda with Brian Winka, CFSM

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with Brian Winka, CSFM, about the benefits of "Bluemuda" vs the "insanity" of the traditional process of overseeding Bermudagrass on sports fields and golf courses in the south and transition zone.   Presented by DryJect/Maximus and Civitas/Intelligro.  

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Dr. Bill Kreuser: Clipping yield and managing turfgrass growth

In this episode, my old pal Dr. Bill Kreuser of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln returns for another visit to the Frankly Speaking virtual studio. We have a fascinating discussion about the current knowledge base about measuring clipping yield, GDD modeling, PGR use and managing for consistent turfgrass growth and optimal turfgrass health.   Is the "one-third rule" valid, or completely bogus? What happens at 50%? Where is the optimal interface of mowing height and frequency? How to u

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Jim Koppenhaver of Pellucid Corp: Reaching future equilibrium

In yet another fascinating discussion, Jim Koppenhaver of Pellucid Corp, brings us up to speed on the current state of the golf industry.   In an era of flat is the new up, 2017 was a "solid sideways" for golf. Some metrics, however, are indicating that the slide of recent years is abating somewhat. How long will it take for supply, demand, playable hours and other factors to reach an equilibrium of health and vitality for the industry?   What can we learn from tennis and ski

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Frankly Speaking (again) with Jim Wagner of Hanse Design

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat again with Jim Wagner of the Hanse Design Group, this time about the intersection of golf course design and maintenance in this era of moving targets and shifting requirements within golf.   How critical is the golf course superintendent in a renovation project? Wagner says that the ultimate success of a project can be predicted by gauging the enthusiasm level of the superintendent, and that often depends on their inclusion in early conversat

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Frankly Speaking with David Bataller of the PGA Catalunya Resort, Girona, Spain

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with David Bataller, Director of Golf Operations at PGA Catalunya Resort near Barcelona, Spain.   An admittedly bad student who was "fired from high school", David went on to high school and riding BMX bikes in Kansas before embarking on his career at PGA Catalunya. After serving as golf course superintendent for 15 years, he was recently promoted to Director of Golf Operations. David quips that he has never been fired from a golf cours

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Dr. Bryan Unruh: Creation, implementation and importance of BMPs for golf course management

Best management practices (BMP) provide superintendents with critical tools needed to maintain golf courses to the satisfaction of golfers and owners while complying with local, state and federal regulations.   In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with Dr. Bryan Unruh, Professor of Environmental Horticulture and Associate Center Director at the University of Florida, IFAS, West Florida Research and Education Center, about his role spearheading the nationwide initiative creating BMPs for

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Frankly Speaking: Dan Dinelli, CGCS, of North Shore Country Club

Topdressing ENCOURAGES accumulation of organic matter? Say what?   In this EPIC episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat, argue, holler and challenge Dan Dinelli, CGCS, at North Shore CC in Chicagoland and recipient of the GCSAA"s Presidential Award for Environmental Stewardship.   Our conversation ranges from Dan's long-term research in putting green rootzone behavior over time, to cultivar assessment and selection for the impending rebuilding of the 1924 greens at North Shore, to the successes

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Frankly Speaking: Dr. Paul Vincelli on the state of turf research and a lot more

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with Dr. Paul Vincelli of the University of Kentucky about the state of turf research in general and plant pathology in particular; looking outside the turf industry for inspiration and innovation that can be applied to turf; enhancing public knowledge about climate change; and the state of genetic research.   As always, frank talk from leading thinkers in the turf industry.   Presented by DryJect and Turf Screen.  

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Sarah Jackson: Female Assistant in a Vastly Male World

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I have a great conversation with Sarah Glenn Jackson, a recently married Texas Tech graduate who for six months has been the assistant superintendent at Plantation Golf Club in Frisco, Texas.   I first became aware of Sarah via Brian Cloud's GCSAA blog and immediately knew her experiences as a female assistant in a vastly male industry would make for good conversation. She didn't disappoint!    

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

TurfNet RADIO: Norm Hummel on green firmness and other "soil" issues

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with my old buddy Norm Hummel, Ph.D., recently semi-retired after selling his soil physical testing lab to Turf and Soil Diagnostics.  Norm and I chat about what superintendents can do "from the bottom up" to manage putting surface firmness given the new tools available to put actual numbers to firmness and moisture levels.   Norm gives guidance regarding "knowing what you're putting down" when topdressing, layering different texture sands on one ano

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

TurfNet RADIO: Water Challenges with Mike Huck

In this episode of Frankly Speaking on TurfNet RADIO I chat with Mike Huck, former USGA Agronomist now with Irrigation and Turfgrass Services of California, about the latest on efficient water management, the situaion CA golf courses are facing, and how water use will change in the next five years. Have a listen, or download the .mp3 for offline listening.  

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

TurfNet RADIO: Speaking Frankly with Paul MacCormack, the Mindful Superintendent

In this episode of Frankly Speaking, I chat with Paul MacCormack, superintendent/GM at Fox Meadow Golf & Country Club (Stratford, Prince Edward Island, Canada) and author of The Mindful Superintendent blog on TurfNet.com.  We speak frankly about facing grief and loss with kindness, taking time to recharge during the off-season, and wellness tips that take care of your best asset during the heat of the season - YOU!   Check Out Science Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with TurfNet RADIO on Blo

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Graciousness

I have been doing some great travel this season so far from Spain and England to Canada, as well as Chicago and Wisconsin. There are few things I enjoy professionally more than walking a golf course with the person charged with stewarding the land. In every case the superintendent greets me graciously and shares their thoughts on golf turf management.   Quote Anyone that has seen Jack Nicholson in The Shining can get a sense of what your golfers will be like this Spring--Here's Johnny!  

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Why Not?

Maybe Spring will show up in much of the northern US states? Still, well before many are mowing north of the Mason-Dixon line, the annual bluegrass seedhead suppression discussion is underway; "What combination of products do you use?, What growing degree day (GDD) timing model do you look at?, Do you use phenological (plant) indicators?" All good questions but....   Why not use soil moisture?   In other parts of the world where chemical technology is more restricted and less available, you

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

Never Doesn't

I'm taking a break from thinking about winter turf damage to watch the WGC at Doral. Listening to the commentary after the first three rounds I was struck by certain quotes. Of course Johnny Miller insisting there was grain all over the greens-south by southwest I heard him say. But Bubba Watson's comment with ESPN Golf Reporter Michael Collins gets the prize.   "I hit the shot I normally hit when playing in the US", Bubba explains of his shot that hit the green and rolled into the water, "tha

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

The Value of Stress

I've been ranting this past year about the demise of "Plant Health" as a viable term in golf turf management. The fact is the longer I ruminate about the concept that we think we can make a plant healthy, the more ludicrous plant health seems. The existence of an organism on a golf putting surface is entirely related to stress tolerance.   Quote Developing perennial surfaces requires a golf turf manager to understand ALL the stresses the plants are under-imposed by us, the weather or the p

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi


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