17 Mar 2016
Aitkens provide full service at Reddish Vale Golf Club
Aitkens have been supplying Stockport based Reddish Vale Golf Club with products for some years now and the success and benefits to the course are matched only by Aitkens' first class personal approach which head Greenkeeper Nick Wild acknowledges has been so invaluable.
When he took over in April 2012, Nick Wild, wanted to rejuvenate the course by rectifying some long standing issues and so brought in Paul Emmanuel Technical Sales Representative for Aitkens to advise on his options.
After initial talks Nick started using a Terralift programme which included Rocastem, Award Ultima fertiliser and Terralift T-Thatch to tackle a drainage issue caused by the river Tame, which is prone to flooding.
All of the courses drainage outlets run into the river. When it reaches saturation point the course continues to hold water even after the river level drops enough for the flow of water to resume. With an average 120mm of rain over nine days in November, it can often be a problem.
However, after using the Terralift programme for three years Nick has seen this issue dissipate whilst the course continues to improve in terms of the sward, drainage and thatch.
"Rocastem was something that was put to me by Paul from Aitkens," Nick began.
"We had three full applications and applied it in five to six weeks. Within a week of spraying the last of three boxes the difference became very noticeable, especially the firmness. This is something you can see that's tangible despite not being aware of what the product is doing at a microscopic level.
"The results of using it on our 18th green were very obvious because the left hand side used to be very soft, but after the third application we were able to take a tractor onto it for additional maintenance which helped us improve it further. We just wouldn't have been able to do that before."
Award Ultima fertiliser is also part of the programme which has been used to great success and its promise of a thicker sward and improved colour was evident within days of using it, as Nick explains.
"After some debate we decided to use the Ultima 5-0-15 in our October renovation and within seven to eight days the colour and density improved massively. We're now coming to the end of November and the colour, even with all the rain, is still there. This has been difficult to achieve in the past."
Whilst the products have surpassed the expectations of Nick and his team it is the relationship between himself and Paul that he cites as a clear advantage in finding the right balance of products to improve the colour and drainage on the course.
"The important thing for me was that Paul took the time in the beginning to figure the course out and see what we needed. That initial process of bringing other experts in their field into the consultation process has now really paid off."