Thursday, October 3, 2013

Say Hello to Joe

October is a great month for grass growing.  With moderate daytime temperatures, cool nights, and timely rainfall, we can really push the turf, and provide some of the best conditions of the year on the course.  However, somebody forgot to tell Mother Nature that fall is here, and we're now experiencing temperatures well above average--what many are referring to as "Augtober." 

We've also gone two weeks without any rain, leading to some of the driest conditions we've seen all year.  Irrigation systems in this part of the country were designed to supplement rainfall, not replace it.  So during periods of no precipitation, we do a lot of hand watering to makeup for any deficiencies in our sprinkler coverage.

Hand watering may not sound like a difficult job, but when performed properly, it is something of an art form.  And there is nobody better at hand watering than one of our longtime employees, Joe Honnig.  With over 20 years of experience at Laurel Creek, Joe probably knows what spots will dry out first without even checking.  However, he goes out every day equipped with an array of tools to make sure the job gets done efficiently.
The water wagon is ready for action.

What do you need besides a hose when watering?  Well, here is some of the equipment that Joe has on his cart:
  • A traditional soil probe and an electronic moisture meter
  • An electric hose reel so he can quickly wind up the 125' of 1" hose
  • Different nozzles to use for hand watering and syringing turf
  • Quick disconnect adapters for hooking into snap valves and sprinklers
  • A screw gun for quickly disassembling sprinklers
  • A wetting agent injection system that allows him to meter how much wetting agent is applied
One of the more difficult aspects of Joe's job (besides dragging a hose with a 120 psi of water pressure) is the need to work on greens, and try to avoid interfering with play.  If Joe is working on an area, he's definitely there to prevent turf problems.  So, please allow him to finish-up, and if you have the chance, say hello to Joe.
Joe, checking soil moisture.

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