Friday, November 5, 2010

Dry Weather Allows Special Course Work To Continue...

Mother Nature's continued weather balancing act has been in full force this fall. After damn lousy hot and wet conditions, through much of the summer, the past two months have been an especially nice reprieve. It's been particularly dry (and a might bit windy a few days) in October, with only .9 inches of rain, and in fact the driest in 39 years, but this certainly is preferred to last October, when the month rainfall total then was 6.79 inches! What a difference a year makes! The only thing certain is that this too will balance out again at some point, perhaps in a colder and whiter winter, or a soggy spring. I hope neither is extreme, but whatever it brings we'll try to make the best of it. For now though, the favorably dry weather has not only allowed a nice extended period for fall "fast and firm" golf, but also has allowed us to continue with a number of course tasks including:
  • Daily leaf processing. (blowing and mulching)
  • Fairway Topdressing on select fairways (includes solid tine aeration).
  • Bunker edging (I call it rip-edging as shown below).
  • Drainage repair and additions.
  • Fairway repair (a few small remaining spots).
  • Winterizing tennis court irrigation system.
  • & Applying nutrients and plant protectants to prepare turf for winter.  
 Rafa & Javier performing the daily leaf processing ritual.
Only a few summer heat/moisture damaged fairway spots remain.
Same location as above photo showing our "home-grown" sod in place. Sod should blend nicely by next golf season, once rooted and well established.
Note 3 divots in same location...Imagine if everyone did this throughout the course! 
(Remember you can "click" on photos to enlarge them for better viewing, then use your "back" browser button to return to post)
1-800 Call Otto, completes repair job in this area.
Between repairing ice damaged spots in spring and heat/moisture damaged spots this fall, he's become an expert in playing surface repair! 

 Turf areas surrounding our bunkers encroach rapidly and as much as a foot or more in some areas, over a growing season. We do not frequently edge our bunkers, preferring to allow a more natural edge to develop. Walking on these edges causes them to flatten and promotes even more rapid growth into the sand, creating a shelf which can lead to very difficult lies. Walking in the sand, rather than along the base of the grass face, helps slow this shelf development. This will be a topic I'll add to the Course Etiquette Page prior to next golf season.

Bunker Rip-Edging in progress. 

Encroaching turf is "Ripped" away (and sand shaken out) to retain original bunker shape. 

 Ripped material is gathered and removed.
 
  A photo "before" Rip-Edging Process
Same shot "after" Rip-Edging
Rip-Edging is an on-going process in that as long as turf is growing, it will continually be encroaching into the sand. Sand is an excellent growing media as the multiple pore spaces are ideal for root growth. We have 92 bunkers with roughly half green side and half fairway bunkers. Last year all green side bunkers were edged as well as several fairway bunkers. Our goal at present is to complete all fairway bunkers this fall and then all green side bunkers in spring prior to the golf season kick off. We're currently about half finished with fairway bunkers. 

Aside from this work, we're addressing a few drainage issues, topdressing select fairways (a second time), and performing various winterization tasks. I'll post about these next week. 
The Low temperatures are forecast to be fairly cool but High temperatures are expected to be near 60 over the next several days, so it's not too late to get in a few more rounds! Enjoy the weather while it lasts!


 




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