The best recipe for healthy turf in the spring is keeping a solid blanket of snow out on the golf course all winter. We did have a late January thaw but all of the greens remained covered in snow. This latest February rain and warm thaw had about everything 1/2 melted during the day then it all freezes again at night.
One of the danger zones in the spring is when we get some upper 40s and lower 50s with melting snow then a cold front comes in and temps drop into the teens or single digits which is called a flash freeze. This can cause the cells in the tiny little grass plants to freeze and expand killing the grass. The crown of the plant is the life of the plant and we need it to not expand with ice while it is coming out of dormancy.
It’s very common to get a lot of rain in late February and March for a few days then that freezes which isn’t the best scenario. The best formula in the spring is once the snow starts to melt you want it to keep melting completely before refreezing again. The freezing and thawing cycle is the worst. We had some really bad ice damage and crown dehydration back in 2002 and 2003.
2002 - 7 greens had winter damage.
Let's keep our fingers cross for a quick warm up once spring arrives.