Turf Talk : Green Colorants
With the winter months approaching, the time to start our greens colorant program has begun. We use turf pigments as the base of our program, not paint as is often assumed. In our geographical location we often find that our greens, if maintained with a pigment program, do not go completely dormant under normal winter conditions. Paints are generally used after the turf goes dormant, and are much more expensive. The key to success with pigments is starting to apply them before the onset of cold weather, essentially when the turf is still completely green and hasn’t lost any color. This allows you to build up a better pigment base on the plant and in a way “lock in” some of the natural color. Once we start applying, we generally do repeat applications every 14-21 days in order to avoid losing color completely, because once it's lost the only way to return back to a natural look is with turf paint. Applications are generally made with a surfactant to aid in coverage and adhesion, and a micronutrient fertilizer containing Iron. Iron when applied makes the plant darker, which adds to the more natural look. Lastly, we believe that using pigments aids us in a smoother transition in the spring months and does not mask any potential turf problems during the winter like paints have been known to do.