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Full Circle A

t a recent water re- sources conference, I was

made acutely aware that more and more communities are struggling with water supplies during extended drought conditions. Many cities that are experiencing critical water shortages have banned most outdoor landscape irrigation; keeping landscapes and turf alive becomes less of a priority for these govern- ing bodies. For businesses that

are dependent on the care and upkeep of plant mate- rial, such as golf, having a drought-proof water supply like recycled water is a form of insurance. Large outdoor water users are embracing this supply even though there are a few inherent obstacles. The additional nutrients and salts found in recycled water can be problematic. Proper monitoring of water and soil can help determine if correc- tive actions need to be taken. It is becoming harder and harder for society to

competing in the future to reach out to me and my staff to let us know what we can do to make your champi- onship experience a more memorable one. The NCGA boasts the

largest competition schedule of any regional golf associa- tion in the country. However it is important for us to not get lost in the amount of events administered each year, but to ensure that the product we produce reaches the highest standards for you, our membership. Historically the program has sold its reputation on the fact that it does not matter whether you are a scratch

object to the merits of using recycled water for landscape irrigation. In fact, a report submitted to the State Water Resources Control Board last year determined that no restrictions should be applied to projects that use recycled water for landscape irriga- tion. The object of the report was to provide guidance to the State Board on the vari- ous compounds that occur in recycled water. Frequent readers of this

column may recall an article I wrote a couple of years ago announcing the start of a recycled water research project. The basic question the research team wanted to know prior to starting the project was: Can turfgrass/ soil systems degrade many of the compounds found in recycled water, as identified in the report to the State Water Board? There were multiple

components to this research project and in each instance the results demonstrated

golfer, a low to mid-handi- capper or a high-handicap- per. The experience when you step on the first tee is the same. You are greeted by a starter who formally in- troduces you and the rest of the group, you pass by many well-trained NCGA officials who dedicate countless hours to ensure the experience had by every competitor is a good one, and when your round is complete you have a well-organized scoring area where you can verify scorecards with your fellow competitors. That said, I believe there

is so much more we can do to improve NCGA champi-

favorable results for the turfgrass/soil system’s ability to slow down the com- pound’s movement through the soil profile. The team also determined how these compounds can potentially migrate downward through the soil profile over-irri- gating the turf stand while growing on very sandy soils. While this discovery was not surprising to the re- search team, it was encour- aging to know that many of the compounds were highly degraded during the “worst case scenario.” Implications from the

research project to the golf industry or large turf areas are two-fold: Maintaining irrigation systems so that they perform at optimal operational efficiencies and understanding the underlying soil character- istics beneath the turf. By applying the right amount of recycled water to sustain the needs of the turf the chances of the compounds

onships. Many of the ideas come from our champion- ship committee or from staff, but it is you the competitor who is taking in the experi- ence of an NCGA champi- onship. While we can’t do anything to improve your score, we certainly can make any changes necessary to enhance the experience you have when you travel to one of our events. The NCGA is very proud

of the variety of events it is able to offer its members. Nowhere else in the country is there a program that caters to all levels of golfers for men and women. The main objective now is to create an

found in recycled water moving through the soil pro- file are greatly diminished. It is very rewarding to

know that use of recycled wa- ter and its application to turf provides multiple beneficial uses: reducing the demands of water supplies for local communities, enhancing the aesthetics of large outdoor landscapes during times of drought, and providing an appropriate level of com- pound degradation. So the needs of commu- nities in need of water for landscape irrigation is perhaps best fulfilled by what we thought at the inception of the project— recycled water can sustain healthy turf while having its negative compounds diluted by soil systems.

By Mike

McCullough Director of Environmental and Water Resources


experience second to none for all players. This will happen at an accelerated pace if you tell us what YOU want to see at future events. We are here to serve you, the member, in any way we can. The cham- pionship committee meets numerous times each year to discuss all topics concerning our program, and I challenge you to help us make your championship experience one to remember.

By Ryan Magee Director of

Championships and Events


FALL 2011 / NCGA.ORG / 67

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