With the prospect of Hurricane Dorian bearing down on Florida, our first priorities are to protect lives and secure basic needs. Once our basic needs are covered, preparation extends to securing and protecting homes, building, businesses and properties. For many golf courses, nurseries and other plant related businesses, irrigation outages, salt damage and pond contamination can have devastating effects long after the storm has passed. As you prepare and through recovery, here are a few tools to help minimize plant damage.
Though storms often bring a significant amount of rainfall, they are often followed by a period of drier weather. Power outages can knock out irrigation systems for a week or longer. Greenhouse growers, nurseries, farms and garden centers may have to lay plants down or disconnect their irrigation systems during storm preparation. Minimizing stress from lack of water following a major storm can help prevent further damage. Hydretain® is a unique root zone moisture management technology that functions to convert subsurface moisture vapor into plant usable water droplets. Hydretain reduces drought stress by maintaining the water supply to plants for extended periods between watering.
For Golf Courses & Sports Fields: Hydretain can be used prior to or after the storm to help protect highly maintained turf in the event of a power outage or pump failure. In the days following the storm, staff may be limited, making hand watering impractical. Hydretain helps buy extra time to keep turf healthy while you restore power or repair the irrigation system.
For Farms, Greenhouse Growers, Nurseries and Garden Center: Hydretain can be applied by drench or via irrigation injection prior to disconnecting irrigation systems and/or laying down plant material. By helping to sustain plants for longer periods between watering, Hydretain can help minimize plant stress while you work to get them righted and systems re-connected. Furthermore, if shade cloth is damaged, plants will need additional moisture to withstand the heat and direct sun, Hydretain can help supply extra moisture to provide some crop protection.
Excess sodium build-up from storm surge, salt water intrusion and driving coastal rains can wreak havoc on our landscapes. Na-X™ Soil Salt Flush is a liquid electrolyte solution of urea and calcium designed to rapidly reduce sodium levels and improve soil structure.
High volumes of storm water may cause an increase in contaminants and excess nutrients in ponds and water features. Aqua-T contains a blend of beneficial bacteria designed to help digest excess nutrients. Starting an Aqua-T program will improve water quality and clarity and reduce odors.
Good luck and stay safe!