There probably isn’t anything more American than American baseball. For many of us, warm evenings, hot dogs, and a local baseball game is an integral part of summer. For those of us at Holganix, our local team of choice is The Blue Rocks – a minor league team based in Wilmington, Delaware that is only a twenty-minute drive from headquarters. From the Holganix college intern with memories of attempting (and failing) to catch her first baseball to the sales representative that enjoys taking his two boys to the annual monkey rodeo (a Delaware community event), the Blue Rocks hold many memories for the Holganix family.
Because of all of those memories culminated over the years, we were so excited when Steve Gold, turf manager of the Wilmington Blue Rocks decided to try the Holganix program three years ago.
“When I use a lot of chemicals on the turf,” says Gold, “I make the turf fat and dumb. That’s one of the reasons why I was so attracted to Holganix. Less synthetics? Sign me up!”
Gold is on the super inoculation Holganix program, utilizing large amounts of Holganix in combination with three pounds of nitrogen annually. Before Holganix, Gold still used a lean nitrogen program but Holganix has allowed him to take the next step. At the end of the day, it was the reduction in fungicides that really got Gold excited. “I hate fungicides,” states Gold passionately. “It’s the dark side of the turf industry.”
Even with Holganix, “We still have some disease issues that pop up now and then,” admits Gold. “The really great part is that we’ve cut back our fungicide applications from 15 per year to 2 to 3 depending on weather conditions. To me, seeing such a huge decrease in fungicide use means results.”
Like many in the industry, Gold has grown up on turf. “My mother worked at the spring training complex in Florida,” says Gold. “At age 15 I got a job cutting grass in the neighborhood. At that time nothing seemed cooler than being able to work the spring training complex.” Gold worked the training complex until he graduated high school. After several other turf field positions, Gold received an offer with the Blue Rocks. Twenty years later, Gold is still happily caring for the Blue Rocks field. “It “grew” on me,” he said of the field.
Just like the field, Holganix grew on Gold too. He first started testing the Holganix program in early 2012. By 2013, after seeing great results, Gold decided to jump on board. “Root depth is what I notice the most,” says Gold who reports seeing 6 to 8 inch roots throughout the year. “Just the other day, we replaced the irrigation head. When we removed sections of the turf to replace the irrigation, it is like picking up a bowling ball because of all the roots.” All in all, Gold says he has longer roots than ever before.
The cool thing about Holganix, says Gold is that it really is healthy for the plant. At the end of the day, “The turf plant and the human body are pretty similar,” says Gold. For a human, eating too much carbs or bad fats can be damaging to your health. For turf, synthetics act the same way. “My goal is to nurture a healthy plant not create a fat one.” Holganix allows Gold to utilize drastically less nitrogen fertilizers and pesticides while promoting plant health.