Sunday, October 19, 2014

Gus and Lou To The Rescue

Lou (left) and Gus
The full court press against the geese has been underway now for three weeks.  Gus and Lou, under the direction of Jeremy Austin, have been a big help.  The population of resident geese has boomed over the past two years and I didn't want to see it continue through the winter.  Jeremy's business is called Eye Dog and fortunately for us he lives nearby.  Jeremy, Gus, and Lou have been visiting almost daily for several hours at a time.  Often they come twice a day and the results have been super. Before we teamed up, "poop patrol" was a daily task assigned to at least one staff member.  It involves blowing the mess from greens and tees and can take a few hours a day.  This task hasn't been needed a single time since the day Gus and Lou arrived.  The resident goose population is very large and Fawn Lake is a great place to live if you're a goose with many ponds and safe havens to choose from.  We are focusing on the golf course and it's 14 ponds, but I'm sure the neighborhood would benefit from Gus and Lou expanding their territory.  That idea has been floated to the powers that be so perhaps you'll see some action soon in other areas of Fawn Lake.

Say hello to the newest team members if you pass them on the course.  Make sure to thank them for saving our course from the nasty aftermath of the unwanted water fowl.
Eye Dog
Jeremy with Gus and Lou

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Not Quite Low Tide

The lake continues to leak, but Thursday the much awaited "plug" arrives that we hope will seal things tight.  At that point we are praying for rain and runoff to begin filling us back up.  Our original plan to move the pumps further out was tabled for the moment as the cost of doing such wasn't going to be easy and the need was still unclear.  We have some time thanks to the weather, so we will pay close attention to the water level and react if/when needed with a pump relocation.  If the valve was going to give way it couldn't have picked a better time.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Monday, September 29, 2014

Down the Drain

450 million gallons and 4 days ago the lake was pretty full.  That was before the valve broke at the dam.  We need a great deal of rain over the next several months as the irrigation pumps are almost exposed.  Help is on the way to move the pumps slightly further out, but we will still be very shallow at best.  The forecast looks promising and we are prepared to use city water in 150 gallon tanks if needed to spot water dry areas.

We are very fortunate to have had such effort given by divers, engineers, HOA staff, and residents. The lake could easily be much lower than it is.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Bunker Thoughts

Front left bunker on 8 after renovation
Same bunker following a rain prior to renovation


By Chris Hartwiger and Patrick O’Brien, USGA SE Region Agronomists
July 29, 2009

What do David Duval and Patrick O’Brien have in common? They both were faced with a plugged and unplayable lie in a bunker during the final round of a major championship. For David, the setting was the U.S. Open at Bethpage. For Patrick, it was the Brunswick Invitational. How should these situations be interpreted? Are these golfers the victim of the wrong sand, poor maintenance, or substandard design? Or are bad lies part of the game? These questions are brought up regularly on USGA Turfgrass Advisory Service visits. We have encountered course officials and golfers who at one time or another have eagerly argued each of the scenarios above. This regional update will sort out some facts, state our position, and provide some information to answer this question.

Aeration Report

It's been 8 days now since we aerated the greens and so far we are on good pace with recovery.  We used 105 tons of sand on 20 greens (just over 5 tons per green) in an effort to completely fill the 8,850,000 holes (59 holes per square foot).  This was the first time we've used our new aerator for a "large" core aeration so there were some learning curves to get through.  We effectively removed just over 8% of the surface area which is about half of our annual target.  With our old aerator we were only able to remove about 5% with one aeration.  Removing more of the unwanted organic matter from the top two inches and replacing it with sand will help to provide healthier and therefore better putting surfaces through the season.  

Last Friday.....3 days following aeration

Practicing Good Practice

The season of turf growth on the zoysia practice tee is rapidly coming to a close.  Divots made today will still be visible 7 months from now.  When we start getting frost in the mornings we'll shut down the turf and start using the mats for the winter.  Until then you can make a big difference in the quality of the tee for next spring by following this method when practicing....

USGA: Mid-Continent (follow link for the full article)