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About this blog

Dave Wilber goes hard at it and never pulls any punches when it comes to agronomy.

Entries in this blog

The Turfgrass Zealot Project Episode #13 with TurfNet founder Peter McCormick

The story of how TurfNet.com came to be comes to life as I interview founder and creator, Peter McCormick.   In a day and age when new things that actually work are rare, Peter McCormick talks about how TurfNet came to be. It's a great story in thinking way outside the box. It also shows what not worrying about what everyone else is doing can do for creativity. If you haven't heard Peter's entire story, this podcast will give you the 411 on one of the most influential people in the Turfgrass B

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot Project Episode #12 with Josh Lewis

Join me as I interview Golf Course Superintendent Josh Lewis and talk about the 2015 US Open.   Episode #12 of the TZP goes deep diving with Josh Lewis.  From starting out in the business in Oregon, working at the famed Bandon Dunes Resort, moving on to Pasatiempo CC and then to Chambers Bay... the site of the 2015 US Open, we cover Josh's footsteps. And we go deep into the backstory of Chamber's Bay.   Josh has an easy style. And we think you will love this interview as much as he loves the

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot Project, Episode #11 with guest Andrew Hardy

Andrew Hardy is one of my favorite communicators in the world of turfgrass. Drop in on a great and personal conversation with me and Andrew as we turn some stones!   Online dating for Superintendents? Check. GrassGoober Catfishing? Check. Owners causing the business grief? Check. Andrew and I get to a bunch of great conversation. If you don't know Andrew this is one of those people you need to know. Check out his Blog here or follow him on twitter @byandrewhardy   And don't forget to follow

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot Project, Episode #10: Talking Jobs with Armen Suny

Join me and Armen Suny as we take a deep dive into the world of job searches and job interviews.   Episode 10 of The Turfgrass Zealot Project is not short on passion. Both Armen Suny and I really want you to succeed in your career goals. Handling the job search and the job interview is key to making that happen. Learn some incredible techniques and be reminded of some very simple things that could put you in the position you want to be in. There's a lot of mistakes being made out there

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot Project, Ep. #9 with Chris Tritabaugh and Scott Hess

Two guests appear on this episode of The Turfgrass Zealot Project.   Chris Tritabaugh is the superintendent at Hazeltine National Golf Club, host to the 2016 Ryder Cup. Chris shares his ideas about work and life and how he handles his staff and the hours required to do his job at a very high profile place.   Scott Hess is Executive Vide President/Human Intelligence at SPARK, one of the world's leading Marketing and PR firms. Scott talks about Generational Science and the Millennial Generatio

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot Project Episode #8 with Jon Kiger of TurfNet

Episode 8 of the TZP showcases one of the industry's most unique and wonderful personalities, Jon Kiger of TurfNet.   This spirited and wonderful chat showcases Jon's enthusiasm for TurfNet and for the industry as a whole. His spirit is infectious and everyone he meets enjoys their relationship.   I spend a bit of time talking about relationships as well.     The Turfgrass Zealot Project is sponsored by Klingstone. Proven Bunker Performance for 15 years.

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot Project Episode #7 with Mind/Body Expert Julia Tindall

Join me as I speak with Mind/Body/Spirit Expert and author Julia Tindall.   Are you happy? Are you stressed? These are critical questions to ask about work and life. And often we in the turfgrass biz don't have many people on our side when we want to talk about the tools needed in this area.   Julia Tindall has taught the Yoga of Wisdom all over the world. A well-known teacher, Tindall makes it clear that when we become stressful, unhappy people, our lives are not being lived to their potent

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot Project Episode #6 with Matt Crowther

Imagine everything that you do and everything that you have depending on a 45 minute ferry ride. That's the world of Matt Crowther, CGCS, superintendent at Mink Meadows Golf Club on the famed island of Martha's Vineyard.   Get to know one of the most passionate turfgrass managers anywhere. Hear his struggles and his successes. Matt is definitely an open book.     Long time TurfNet member and a frequent contributor, Matt's position of isolation makes him have to reach out via digital media

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

TZP Episode #5 with NFL Groundsman and Consultant Ross Kurcab

30 years with the Denver Broncos... Ross Kurcab is one of my Turfgrass Heroes!   Join me on this episode of The Turfgrass Zealot Project with guest Ross Kurcab. Professional NFL groundsman turned sportsfield consultant, Ross spent 30 years with the Denver Broncos. And he has some stories to tell. Ross and I talk about Natural Turf vs. Synthetic Turf and how and when it can go wrong, plus other good stuff.   In my "monologue" section, I share a few words about value and perhaps what our real

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

TZP Episode #4 with Extreme Supt/Athletes Thomas Bastis and Scott Bower

In the Turfgrass Zealot Project Episode #4, I chat with Extreme Super/Athletes Thomas Bastis (California Golf Club of San Francisco) and Scott Bower (Martis Camp, Truckee, CA).   Imagine spending 9+ days biking, treking, kayaking, orienteering and scrambling over 450 miles with an hour of sleep every 24 hours. And imagine calling this fun. Thomas Bastis and Scott Bower (along with Scott's wife Susan) don't have to imagine this. They lived it. And lived to tell about it. Hear about the adventur

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot Project, Episode 3 With Guest Randy Wilson

There are a lot of things you may not know about Randy Wilson and the famed Rockbottum Country Club. And while I may not expose all the secrets in this podcast, I certainly get to a few of them.   "I did spend time as a superintendent, about somewhere between 12 or 14 years, but it damaged me because it was on Bentgrass in Atlanta," says Randy. "I was forced to work on golf courses at a young age."   Randy goes on to explain his world as a concert roady, camera operator, Army Special Forces

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot, Episode 2 with guest Jon Scott

In this episode of the Turfgrass Zealot Project, Dave Wilber talks about dedication and then interviews Jon Scott, one of the most dedicated people in Turf.   Jon Scott shares one of the most interesting careers in Golf. Fifteen years as a Super. Two tours with Jack Nicklaus as Director of Agronomy. Director of Agronomy for The PGA Tour. Jon has made some things happen and seen some things happen.         The Turfgrass Zealot Project is brought to you by Klingstone, the original liquid-

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Turfgrass Zealot Project, Episode One, with special guest Mike Kosak

Join me for the very first episode of the Turfgrass Zealot Project with my guest Mike Kosak.   Get to know the real Dave Wilber as I tell a bit of my story and am joined by superintendent legend Mike Kosak, the first superintendent I worked for in the golf business 30-some years ago. Mike fashioned a career starting with building nine golf holes by himself, then went on to become superintendent, then general manager, then GM with an ownership interest, and then 'back to the dirt" as a superint

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

The Zealot Loses His VIrginity, Soon You Will Too

I lost my virginity on a cold December morning in the mid 90's.     I had traveled on Planes, Trains and Taxis to get to the event. And I was so far out of my depth, I didn't even know how far that "far" really was. I arrived for the date about 6 hours early. When I woke up from a seemingly short nap on the morning of, I had so much performance anxiety that I was unable to eat. "I should go home," I thought to myself.   I was to meet her just around the corner from where I was staying. S

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

Ten Things To Remember: On Assistant Superintendent Leadership Skills

My last post covered some basics on being excellent. Kind of a 101 level of how to roll. Now lets look at leadership.   Over the years, I've seen some things that Assistant Supers are and are not doing when it comes to being leaders. And let's really face it, you may think that the 2IC (second in charge) has to do with agronomy. Not so much. In most situations the job figures as a challenge to train, motivate and supervise a crew. Show me an excellent crew and I'll be looking for a special Ass

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

Ten Things To Remember: On Being An Excellent Assistant Or Intern

I'm talking to Assistant Supers, Second Assistants, Assistants in Training and Interns.    I got a great phone call from a young Turfhead who just landed his first second assistant superintendent job and wanted my take on succeeding. It was a great conversation and I told him that I would further answer his questions here. Sorry, he preferred not to be outed. Doesn't matter. The application is near universal.   1. Show Up Early. You are the new kid. And for sure, no one is going to wait for

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

One Turfgrass Zealot's opinion about water in California

Perhaps it is time to cut through all the media hype and really talk about the water situation in California. California doesn't have a water problem. We all do.   I've been watching the water picture in California for 25 years. Water has been my key focus even before that, coming up in the business in Colorado. I've been fortunate enough to get to spend a lot of time around people who really understand water in just about every usage situation. It's my area of greatest professional interest a

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

You can't unring the bell...

I am profoundly aware of the need for all Turfheads to be critical. It really is our job. One mentor told me that if he didn't "point and bitch" enough, he wasn't doing his job. And I adopted this. I was a ruthless stickler for the details.   Hated by many. Loved by no one. Followed infrequently.   I remember someone sending me a book called Don't Sweat the Small Stuff (*and it's all small stuff). I returned the book with a scathing letter indicating that it was my job to "sweat" in parts pe

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

Death Just Wasn't Good Enough

When the picture was taken, nobody was thinking that it may be the last shot of me alive. Everyone just thought that it was funny that I kept asking for my phone. Ostensibly to tweet my status, but kept falling asleep because I was drugged to the hilt.   A few hours later I was "code blue". Completely unresponsive. Heart out of rhythm and racing. Blood pressure bottomed out. Not breathing on my own. For all basic definitions, I was dying. The hospital Rapid Response Team flooded the ICU.   I

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

In Which I Share Too Much About My 2014

2014.   The crazy uncle that I intended to let stay for a few weeks stayed for a year and injected and infected me in as many ways possible. He is now gone. Replaced by the Aunt, who isn't crazy yet, but could certainly obtain extreme crazed cat lady status if left unchecked.   My email inbox isn't always the fun zone. And over the past couple weeks, it has received a bunch of mail basically asking me if I'm ok. The truth? I'm really not.   If you have followed my writings (and if you have

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

From The Zealot Archives: Of Salts and Trees and Magic Bio Stuff

Someone asked me a very similar question today. And here today, as it was then, is a response that may make sense. Or not.   February 16th, 2012.   I received this today in my email from a source that shall go unnamed because she/he/it is dumb enough to use the word 'Doctor' around my name. Kind of like using the word 'beautiful' around Susan Boyle. She can sing, however. I can't.   "Dear Dr. Wilber,   In a post in the TurfNet Turf Blog Aggregator this week, Sean McCue of Castle Pines sa

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

From The Archives: The Cost of Savings

I'm going to do this a little bit backwards. First a comment on a blog post from 2012...and then the actual post for your rereading and rethinking pleasure. Why? Because over the last month, this is what people have been talking to me about. This very subject. Not getting better. Maybe getting worse.   The comment below is from Tom Doak. I met Tom briefly in Denver in the late 80's when no one knew who he was. Then a friend dropped a manuscript copy of something called The Confidential Guide t

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

From the Archives: Early Order Madness...

I wrote this post a few years back. Maestro McCormick thought it may be timely to dredge it up because not much has changed. So here goes...As always...thanks for reading. -DW   In my current, often schizophrenic situation, I find myself involved in the whole concept of Early Order Season. As I write this, there are no less than thirteen programs that in some way or another provide an opportunity. Opportunity for what? That's the big question for which every situation will have a different ans

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

Testing....Testing?!

Every fall, the floodgates open and the soil tests come rolling in. I love soil tests. Probably because I actually use them for what they are intended for. Information. Not sales.    A long time ago when I decided to form a business around testing soil and consulting based on those soil tests, a ton of people said that I was crazy. Charge for something that the fertilizer industry usually gives away for free? It made no sense.    When I exposed bad testing or perhaps better said, cheaper tes

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

Inter The Seedman

Time for some agronomy. Talking and thinking about bent/poa or poa/bent greens here.   Maestro McCormick gave me a pointer to a good discussion going on in the TurfNet.com Forum. Here it is. And a special shoutout to topic starter Chuck Barber. Being brave enough to post your thoughts is how one gets max advantage out of this whole thing. I don't love lurkers. Posters get kisses. Topic starters who actually engage with real thoughts are big time crushes of mine. What I love is the diversity of

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

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