Calling all superintendents—are you looking for the best spreader for topdressing? Then, read on.
What is Topdressing?
As you know, your golf course uses small quantities of topdressing sand that you apply to your golf course greens throughout the growing season. If you’re at a Southern golf course, you dust your putting greens throughout the entire year.
Why should you topdress your greens throughout the growing season? Here are the benefits for regular topdressing:
- It helps reduce thatch — Golfers want a smooth surface to play on, and you can only achieve that when you don’t have a lot of thatch. Plus, thatch causes problems to turfgrass by smothering the crowns at the soil line—too much thatch results in turf diseases.
- It helps with water drainage — After a gulley washer, you want the water to drain through the greens quickly. Puddling causes algae build-up and unfriendly play.
- It provides a smooth playing surface — As you know, golfers want an even playing surface throughout the greens to improve their game. Topdressing with aeration improves the turf’s playing surface.
- It enhances turf recovery — During the hot summer months, golfers take advantage of the beautiful weather to play golf. Plus, the warm days cause turf stress. Topdressing will help your greens recover faster from a lot of play and heat stress.
- It boosts the root zone — Regular topdressing improves the soil’s overall health after a few years. Plus, topdressing reduces soil compaction each time it’s applied with aerafication.
You don’t want to add topdressing sand without first aerating the greens through scarification or verticutting. After you aerate the greens, mix the topdressing in with the rest of the soil to avoid layering.
If you allow the sand to lay on top of the soil, you’ll change the soil profile where the sand builds up, resulting in restricted water movement and poor root development.
When Is the Best Time to Topdress?
Most golf superintendents apply topdressing sand throughout the growing season before the golfers hit the greens. You may hear complaints about playing in a recently topdressed course, but in the long run, you’ll have healthier turfgrass.
You’ll find the following benefits from topdressing during the spring, summer, and fall:
- The soil absorbs the topdressing sand better during the warmer months.
- Applying topdressing out of season results in smothered turf, weak growth, and turf diseases.
- The topdressing washes away during massive rain events.
- Golf superintendents in southern states lightly dust their courses with topdressing sand during the winter.
You want to add topdressing sand that matches the soil’s profile. When you match the soil’s profile with topdressing sod or sand, it leads to compatible soil particle size, balanced pH, improved water drainage, and air movement.
If you don’t match the topdressing to the existing soil profile, you increase the chances of poor turfgrass quality and uneven play. And the golfers who play on your greens will let you know their displeasure of the rough playing surface.
How to Topdress with a Spyker Spreader
When it comes to topdressing putting greens and other smaller areas, you want a topdressing tool that makes the process work seamlessly.
Spyker’s Commercial Broadcast Spreader, the Mulch n’ Move, makes short work of topdressing jobs. Golf superintendents love the Mulch n’ Move. This topdressing tool comes with the following features:
- An extra-large port opening for larger materials
- 120 lbs. hopper capacity for fewer refills
- Accuway™ technology for a balanced spread pattern
- This walk-behind spreader covers more greens between fill-ups
- A special topdressing kit to protect the spreader’s gears from the topdressing sand’s abrasiveness.
You can find the Mulch n’ Move spreader at your local Spyker dealer or online. If you have any questions about your Spyker Spreader, call our customer support at (800)972-6130 or by filling out our contact form.
GolfShake.com, “Why Do Greenkeepers Topdress Greens?”
Turf-Maintenance.com, “Golf Courses—Top Dressing.”
USGA.org, “The Benefits of Sand Top Dressing.”