Thursday, October 10, 2013

Just Another Average Year?

When dealing with the weather on a daily basis, one quickly learns that what is considered "average" actually seems to be the exception rather than the rule.  For example, in looking at rainfall for the six month period of April-September this year, things were hardly typical:
  • April and May total 4.75" 
  • June and July total 23.25" 
  • August and September total 4.95"
How do these numbers compare to average?  The excessive rainfall of June and July was almost 300% of normal.  However, these two months were bookended by April and May at only 65% of average, and August and September at 68% of average precipitation. 

Similar to the peaks and valleys in rainfall, so too the temperatures rarely seem to be average.  Some unseasonably cool days in September were quickly followed by a full week of highs in the 80's in the beginning of October.  How does this affect things?

While temperature swings in the fall may not seem like a big deal, it does once again have an impact on the maintenance operation by forcing us to redirect labor from one activity to another.  And at a time when we have already significantly reduced our staff size from the summertime high, the need for just an extra fairway mowing (which takes 24 man hours) makes a big difference.

Yet, there is no choice but to go with the flow when Mother Nature is calling the shots. This may mean adjusting labor priorities from hand watering one day, to pushing sand and pumping bunkers the next.  The key is not to stress over what we can't control, and try to take it all in stride.

Often times our memories of the weather last as long as remembering what we ate for dinner the night before.  So, a few years from now, we may think back to 2013, and remember it as just an "average" weather year.
Mowing in the rain is not ideal for the turf or equipment operator, but sometimes it has to be done.

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