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

A MATTER OF RESPECT

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)


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Aeration Progress Report....and What To Expect

Yesterday we began the fall aeration process on greens.  We are using 5/8" diameter tines and pulling cores.  Our goal is to fill the holes with sand which will take another few days to fully complete.  So far we've made it through 12 of our 20 greens.  We are starting on hole 11 this morning and expect to wrap up this evening.  

The back nine is closed today

Those of you playing the front nine should know that we are not "finished" yet.  Putting conditions will be far less than acceptable but since our entire staff will be working on the back nine, you are free to enjoy the weather on the front nine.  We will get back on the front nine tomorrow during play to add sand if needed, brush, roll, etc...  We'll do the back nine follow up work on Thursday during play. 

Thanks for your patience.  We should be back to normal very soon.  

The steps we took yesterday.....

Topdressing goes down first (about 5 tons per green)

Aeration occurs next followed by shoveling up the plugs

A brush is pulled across the green and then it's rolled and watered



Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Test In Progress

PROBLEM

As most of you know, our roughs are a combination of fescue and bluegrass.  That, at least, is what was planted in the beginning almost 20 years ago.  Over time several unwanted grasses have found a home in the rough. Bermudagrass, bentgrass, and zoysia that's crept out of the fairway are prevalent throughout the course.  Playing a shot from one of these unwanted grasses in the rough, is nearly impossible.  Fescue is not a joy to play from either, but it offers a much better opportunity to advance the ball toward the target.  

SOLUTION

We are currently using the 16th hole as our test plot for "cleaning" up the fescue rough.  Last Thursday we applied Pylex and Turflon to the rough and will make two more applications over the next 5 weeks.  During this time we expect the unwanted grasses to die.  Obviously there will be a period of time where it appears we've done more bad than good, but killing the unwanted grasses will give the fescue seed a chance to survive without the competition.

 For now please pardon our efforts as hole 16 will be in a state of "repair" for several weeks while the unwanted grasses die off and the new fescue seed begins to grow.  I am confident that we will be happy with the results of this "test".  It is my hope that we can squeeze this into the budget for next year on the rest of the course.