Dollar spot and water hot topics at education event

Disease Control
Sean Loakes at Burnham & Berrow Golf Club

Over fifty Greenkeepers gather at Burnham and Berrow in Somerset for an educational event, organised by ICL with Syngenta, involving golf clubs from seven different counties. 

The day was filled with insightful presentations, including Syngenta Technical Manager Sean Loakes, presenting results of dollar spot management trials and the new Syngenta AIM programme of Ascernity, Instrata Elite and Medallion applications.

Sean Loakes at ICL education event Feb 24


Liam Rowlands, the ICL Technical Area Sales Manager, emphasised the event’s core objective: to educate greenkeepers, facilitate knowledge sharing, and promote professional growth within the turf industry.

Sean addressed the challenges of controlling dollar spot, particularly prevalent in the southwest, and discussed disease management strategies and programmes. 

He highlighted the importance of understanding regional challenges of dollar spot and tailoring solutions through ongoing trials and development.

Richard Ponsford, Course Manager at Clevedon Golf Club added, “I’ve come away with more ideas on how to deal with dollar spot. It was really interesting, as it is becoming more of an issue.” 

“I’ll be looking at a couple of greens a bit differently in terms of moisture management. No matter what line of work you are in, education is useful because the day you stand still is the day you get left behind. It’s been a fascinating event.”

Eddie Campbell, Head Greenkeeper at Ogbourne Downs Golf Club, highlighted he is seeing a lot more of dollar spot disease on the Wiltshire downland course, driven by issues such as climate change. “It’s almost quite a new disease in how often we are seeing it year on year now. 

"It’s great to hear what is happening and getting ahead of the curve on how to manage it.”

The event also featured presentations by Henry Bechelet, ICL Technical Manager, who shared his extensive expertise in agronomy, focusing on strategies to improve sward species progression in golf greens through ‘The Disturbance Theory’, alongside the importance of water management techniques.

Liam Pigden, Deputy Course Manager at Burnham and Berrow, noted: “The water management presentation was very interesting, and it was great to see the data and the trials rather than us just putting products on the course and assuming they are going to work. Education is key.”

Sean Loakes added: “This insightful education day exemplifies a commitment to advancing turf management practices through knowledge sharing, networking, and ongoing research. 

“By providing a forum for industry professionals to exchange ideas and stay informed, events like these play a vital role in shaping the future of turf management, ensuring that the industry continues to evolve and adapt to meet emerging challenges.”