Around the Airport

Thursday, October 13, 2011

It's That Time of the Year - Again

After working year round to provide a green getaway for all of our aviation family, the grass has earned its annual fall days at the spa.
Over the past couple years, the grass has taken a beating.  It went something like this: a record amount of airplane landings followed by flooding rains, then more record amounts of landings followed by a drought, then more flooding rains followed with a banner year of aircraft mixed with a drought.    For humans this would be equivalent to being on a starvation diet, then running a marathon and a daytime dessert hike back to back without any water to drink.
Needless to say, the grass became very stressed over the past 30 months.   Because of this, we have a bumper crop of warm season weed grasses we are trying to get under control.  If we do not do something about it, we run the risk of this invasive weed taking over the entire airport.  Those who don't deal with this on a daily or annual basis may look at the green grass and think it looks good.  But that is not the case.  This weed resembles the blades of grass that you land on during the warm summer season and then it goes into hibernation and turns brown as the temperatures drops below 55 degrees.   The brown patches are hideous. Therefore, we've contracted with a company to apply a new herbicide this fall and hopefully again next spring that should help us eliminate this nasty little pest.
We are also aerating, overseeding at 3 times our normal annual rate, and applying a new form of fertilizer to feed the grass much needed nutrients.  
With all this work, you might also notice a few areas where there is straw on the ground.  These were the areas most torn up during the damp days of the annual fly-in.  We ask that you use due diligence around these areas to not blow the straw.  In these areas there are delicate blades of young grass trying to make it.  Prop blast can cause the straw to go blowing and these younglings will lose their warm blankets which are there to help them get through the upcoming cooler months.
Thanks again to everyone who contributed to the Airport Operation Fund.  As you can see, we put every penny right back into the grounds.

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