What a treat it was to get to sit down for a conversation with Golf Course Superintendents Association of America sitting president Rafael Barajas. As always, Golf Course Trades did a masterful job of editing, layout, and publishing. You can read the interview here and in print. From the interview:
GCT: If you could take students to five courses in the U.S. to study their maintenance techniques and technology, which would they be and why?
RB: I think the best education for students comes from volunteering at courses that hold PGA events and majors. Get on the grounds crew, and you’ll get a terrific education from the ground up. They would get to learn from the best courses maintained at the highest level. They’d get to see real world problem solving under immediate conditions. And they’d see them most innovative, state-of-the-art tech in the business.
GCT: What do you think are the biggest technological breakthroughs of the last ten years in golf course maintenance?
RB: Irrigation technology and water application are huge. Water management is a critical issue; it’s scarce and we have to protect it and use it wisely. So it has to be applied in an efficient way. Also new turfgrasses: we have new drought-tolerant species of turf that minimize application of inputs and help with water conservation. Finally, GPS technology has many applications, including precise application of both inputs and water.