ISC-Audubon

 
 
 

SustainAbility Newsletter

GCSAA Research Examines Nutrient Use on Golf Courses

Golf Swing

The Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) has released the results of a nationwide survey of golf courses examining nutrient use and management on golf facilities. The results indicate that superintendents apply fertilizers at rates that fall within the guidelines recommended by university scientists.

These findings are contained in the article “Golf Course Environmental Profile Measures Nutrient Use and Management and Fertilizer Restrictions, Storage, and Equipment Calibration” published in the December 2009 edition of Applied Turfgrass Science. The article was authored by GCSAA Director of Research Clark Throssell, Ph.D.; Director of Environmental Programs Greg Lyman; Senior Manager of Environmental Programs Mark Johnson; Senior Manager of Market Research and Data Greg Stacey; and National Golf Foundation Director of Research Clark Brown.

“Nutrient use and its impact on water quality is a hot topic across many industries,” Throssell says. “Those who are familiar with golf course management have long felt the industry has been a good steward when it comes to the management of fertilizers. With this study, we now have a much better picture of nutrient use across all regions of the country and how superintendents make application decisions. The report indicates where improvements can be made, but by and large the information is positive.”
Among the key findings:

  • For all golf courses in 2006, a total of 101,096 tons of nitrogen were applied to 1,311,000 acres (154 pounds of nitrogen per acre); 36,810 tons of phosphate were applied to 1,131,000 acres (65 pounds of phosphate per acre); and 99,005 tons of potash were applied to 1,260,000 acres (157 pounds of potash per acre).
  • Of 18-hole golf facilities in the U.S., 49 percent had a written nutrient management plan or written fertilizer program in 2006, but only 6 percent of facilities were required by government or tribal authorities to have such a plan. A higher maintenance budget correlates with the likelihood that a golf facility would use a written nutrient plan or fertilizer program.
  • For 18-hole golf facilities nationally, slow-release nitrogen sources accounted for 64 percent of the nitrogen applied, and quick-release nitrogen sources accounted for 36 percent. Organic nutrient sources were applied to 66 percent of 18-hole golf facilities in 2006. Organic sources of nutrients comprise 24 percent of the total annual amount of nutrients applied on 18-hole golf facilities.
  • In 2006, 43 percent of 18-hole facilities did not use soil amendments. The highest use of soil amendments was in the Southwest, where it's common for soil and irrigation water to have high sodium content. A much larger percentage of respondents, 74 percent, use a turfgrass supplement such as biostimulants, humates and amino acids/proteins.
  • Nationally, only 9 percent of 18-hole golf facilities reported restrictions on fertilizer applications. Restrictions were most likely in the North Central (16 percent) and Pacific (10 percent) agronomic regions. Sixty-two percent of 18-hole golf facilities in the U.S. with restrictions report restrictions on phosphorus either in the total yearly amount applied or the amount per application.
  • Superintendents consider multiple factors when making nutrient application decisions. Integrating many variables into their decisions leads to effective applications for the turfgrass while protecting the environment. The most common factors superintendents used to make decisions about nutrient applications and the percentage of 18-hole golf facilities using that factor were: visual observations of turfgrass (85 percent), previous product performance (84 percent), soils/soil analysis (84 percent), precipitation/temperature/weather (83 percent), turfgrass species (81 percent) and disease pressure (79 percent).
  • From 2002 to 2006, 95 percent of 18-hole golf facilities performed soil testing on greens, 75 percent on tees, 80 percent on fairways and 26 percent on rough.
  • On average, superintendents at 18-hole golf facilities calibrated their fertilizer application equipment before 67 percent of applications, thereby improving the accuracy of their fertilizer applications. Nationally, 91 percent of 18-hole golf facilities stored fertilizer on site for three consecutive calendar days or more in 2006. Half of those golf facilities used a dedicated storage area. 

To see a copy of the full report:
http://www.eifg.org/programs/GCSAAnutrientsurvey_fullreport.pdf


PDF

 
CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE ENTIRE NEWSLETTER IN PDF FORMAT

 

References and Sources used in this issue of SustainAbility Newsletter Include:

Audubon Lifestyles
www.audubonlifestyles.com
 
The International Sustainability Council
www.thesustainabilitycouncil.org 

General Motors
www.gm.com

Toyota
www.toyota.com

Fisker Automotive
www.fiskerautomotive.com

Golfpreserves
www.golfcourseproject.com 

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Housing Partnership
www.cmhp.org

Chesapeake Bay Foundation
www.cbf.org 

University of Alaska Fairbanks
www.uaf.edu 

Taylor Properties Group
www.taylorpropertiesgrp.com  

Urbana University
www.urbana.edu 

The Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA)
www.gcsaa.org 

American Society of Golf Course Architects
www.asgca.org

The United States Golf Association (USGA)
www.usga.org

 

SustainAbility Newsletter Archive Article (random)

10 Facts About Water

Water

Our Earth seems to be unique among the other known celestial bodies. It has water, which covers three-fourths of its surface and constitutes 60-70 wt % of the living world. Water regenerates and is redistributed through evaporation, making it seem endlessly renewable. So why worry?  

Actually, only 1% of the world's water is usable to us. About 97% is salty sea water, and 2% is frozen in glaciers and polar ice caps. Thus that 1% of the world's water supply is a precious commodity necessary for our survival. 

To follow are 10 more facts about water:

  1. One drop of oil can make up to 6.6 gallons of water undrinkable.
  2. 70% of the world’s water is used for agriculture, 22% for industry and 8% for domestic use. Low and middle income countries use 82% of their water for agriculture, 10% for industry and 8% for domestic use. High income countries use 30% of their water for agriculture, 59% for industry and 11% for domestic use.
  3. A person is able to survive one month without food but only five to seven days without water.
  4. Of all the Earth’s water, 97.5% is salt and 2.5% is fresh. Of the fresh water, about 70% is locked in glacial ice and 30% in soil, leaving under 1% (.007% of the total fresh water) readily accessible for human use. 
  5. A water footprint, or virtual water, is the amount of water used in the entire production and/or growth of a specific product. For example, 2.2 lbs of beef has a water footprint of 4,226.8 gallons; one sheet of paper has a water footprint of 2.6 gallons; one cup of tea has a water footprint of 9.2 gallons; and one microchip has a water footprint of 8.5 gallons.
  6. It takes 25 to 50 gallons to take a five-minute shower; 2-7 gallons to flush a toilet; 2 gallons to brush one’s teeth; and 20 gallons to hand wash dishes.
  7. 6,000 children die each day from preventable water-related diseases.
  8. The population of the United States is approximately 304 million; the population of Europe is approximately 732.7 million; 1.1 billion people lack adequate drinking water access; and 2.6 billion people lack basic water sanitation. 
  9. The average American uses about 151.9 gallons of water per day, with about 60% of that being used out-of-doors (watering lawns, washing cars, etc.) The average European uses 66 gallons of water per day. 1.1 billion people lack adequate water access, using less than 5 gallons per day.
  10.  The average American uses 30.3 times more water than a person who lacks adequate water access; the average European uses 13.2 times more water than a person who lacks adequate water access.
         

PDF


CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE ENTIRE NEWSLETTER IN PDF FORMAT

 

References and Sources used in this issue of SustainAbility Newsletter Include:

Audubon Lifestyles
www.audubonlifestyles.org 
 
The International Sustainability Council
www.thesustainabilitycouncil.org 

Sustainability Campaign
sustainabilitycampaign.blogspot.com

Nature.com
www.enature.com

Golfpreserves
www.golfcourseproject.com

American Society of Golf Course Architects
www.asgca.org

The United States Golf Association (USGA)
www.usga.org

Sustainable Golf & Development
www.sustainablegolfdevelopment.com

Turf Feeding Systems
www.turffeeding.com

National Geographic
www.nationalgeographic.org


 

 

$25 Annually $100 Annually $250 Reg / $100 Annually


SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITY

Sponsors are a critically important part to the success of ISC-Audubon. As a non-profit organization dedicated to advocating sustainability, we offer all of our programs to our members free of charge, and are publicly available for download on our website.

ISC-Audubon is proud to extend the opportunity to select businesses and organizations to become sponsors of our sustainability education and advocacy programs. As a sponsor, your business or organization can realize significant value.

Click here to learn more about this opportunity. 

 
 

A Coalition for Good - Spreading the Seeds of Sustainability

ISC-Audubon is a coalition of non-profit organizations and initiatives that include The International Sustainability Council (ISC), Audubon Lifestyles, Audubon Outdoors, Planit Green, Broadcast Audubon, and the Audubon Network for Sustainability. 

Funds generated through memberships and donations are used to provide fruit & vegetable seeds, wildflower seed mix, and wildlife feed & birdseed to urban and suburban communities around the world. These seeds are used by communities to establish fruit and vegetable gardens, bird and wildlife sanctuaries, and for the beautification of urban and suburban landscapes by creating flower and native plant gardens.

Read more

You are here: Home Broadcast Audubon SustainAbility Newsletter Archives Winter 2010-2009 GCSAA Research Examines Nutrient Use on Golf Courses