Thursday, January 27, 2011

Managing Sodium in our Soils

Bulk Gypsum

Tyler McCool, our new intern from Mississippi State University, operating the tractor.

Winter is the ideal time to apply additional amendments to the soil if required based on routine soil testing.  Our recent test results indicated that an application of 75 tons of Gypsum (CaSo4) was required to reduce the amount of Sodium (Na) in the soil. High levels of Sodium reduces water infiltration by destroying soil structure.  Gypsum helps dislodge Sodium from the soil exchange sites so that it may be leached (washed) from the soil resulting in improved water infiltration and playability of our course. 

Our gypsum is delivered in bulk 25 ton quantities and is applied using our Dakota Turf Tender 440.  The amendment is applied and then watered in.  This amendment is also used for treatment of our sodic irrigation water source which will be discussed further in an upcoming blog.