Friday, November 28, 2014

Why No Carts?

When the temperatures fall, conditions on the golf course can be somewhat deceptive.  For example, on Wednesday we received 1.35" of precipitation, or over 36,600 gallons of water on each and every acre of the course. 

As temperatures dropped below freezing, much of that moisture was trapped in the upper part of the soil profile.  Thus, if you ventured on the course Thursday or Friday morning, the frozen conditions made it appear to be much firmer (less wet) than it really was. 
Water was still running down cart paths Friday morning.
On days like this, what appears to be fine conditions in the morning, will often turn into messy conditions in the afternoon as the surface thaws.  The damage to the turf that takes place at this time of year from cart traffic is of particular concern as the plant is dormant and unable to grow out of it.
Cart traffic on wet turf can cause damage to both the foliage and roots.


Friday, November 21, 2014

#3 Tee Update

With several golf events taking place in September, we weren't able to re-grade and seed #3 tee until the beginning of October.  While this was about one month later than what is considered the ideal time for seeding, the tee has filled in nicely, and should be in good shape next spring. 

Interestingly, the one area that we will need to address over the winter is the perimeter of the tee, which we sodded after the tee was re-graded.  So, what happened to some of the sod?

As most people know, the usual concern with sod is making sure it doesn't dry out.  With cool temperatures the first week in October, and the pallet of sod stored in the shade, we really didn't need to worry about the sod drying prior to being installed.  Apparently, however, the conditions were perfect for the sod to actually start to decompose as it was rolled up.  When we picked it up from the pallet, there was no doubt that an exothermic reaction was taking place, as the sod was almost too hot to handle.

Fortunately, only a small amount of sod will need to be replaced.  With some other winter projects requiring sod, we will be sure to get a little extra to clean up the edge of the tee and have it looking good for the 2015 golf season.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Shifting Gears

The irrigation system will be winterized this week, and that always marks a significant change for the crew on the golf course.  With most of the leaves finished falling and a frigid forecast, mowing will now take a back seat to some project work. 

One of our favorite projects to tackle is drainage, and the fairway drainage we've installed over the years has been a tremendous help in several ways.  Thanks to these drain lines, we can allow carts out more quickly after rain events, get the fairways mowed without causing damage, and improve playability of these areas by having  them dry faster.

A drain line was installed in the swale on #4 approach several years ago, and as a warm up for some bigger drainage projects this winter, this week we added a couple of new laterals to this existing line.

Additional drain lines being installed on #4.

Friday, November 7, 2014

#7--A Bellwether of the Weather

While September was relatively dry, we've certainly had a good amount of precipitation since then.  From October 1 through November 6, we received 5.35" of rain.

Around the golf course, some of the ponds slowly lose water into the ground, while others have springs feeding them, which keeps their water levels at capacity even under the driest conditions.  However, #7 pond falls somewhere in between these two extremes. 

When overall conditions are wet, #7 remains full, but during dry periods the water level will drop.  After being about six to eight inches below the overflow level for the past few months, this pond is back to capacity, and given all of the recent rain, will remain that way for some time to come.

So for a good idea of how the weather has been lately, you can always just take a quick look at #7.
#7, back to capacity.