Friday, August 30, 2013

Golf Course Respect

It is a tough pill to swallow for any Superintendent; after the time, energy and effort he or she puts into the responsibility of providing the best possible conditions on daily basis, that they make their morning rounds and experience the sights that I was misfortunate of discovering today.  I wanted to share some pictures.

Cart damage on multiple Tee and Green Complexes that have paths following 1.75 inches of rain

Unfixed ball marks on a handful of greens
Ball marks the size of craters, that if left unrepaired, they will take weeks to heal
Divots that would normally survive, not being replaced
Look at this guy!
There is his home

Putter damage on #13 green

Apparently our chipping green, which is used to practice bunker shots and chip shots, now serves as a new Driving Range tee
Additional damage to the collar
I remember like it was yesterday when I took up the game of golf at an early age (heck my Mom considered it daycare during the summer months) and after walking 36, sometimes 45 holes in one day.....I would come in just prior to Mom picking me up and the Pro at our Mom and Pop club, the late Wayne Haley would say:
"How'd it go out there Josh?" - Pro
" I hit it often, Pro....but it's coming around"- Me
He would always reply " Just remember Son, if you respect the course, she will respect you!"
I've taken that advice throughout my 28 years of playing and working with the great game of golf.
Building Longue Vue for the future doesn't just start with the planning and execution of myself, the greens staff and the Greens Committee but it carries over to the respect that everyone that sets foot on this property must have.  My goal is to provide you the best experience possible, that experience will earn respect and return, Longue Vue will be the best it can be!  A little help will go a long way.

As always, I look forward to seeing you on the course!


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Rainy Day Post

Rainy days allows me to catch up on a lot of things but more importantly update everyone on what's happening on the course.

Seed Project Germination:

We are 14 days out from conducting the seed project to certain areas of the rough and we are starting to see a lot of germination in groves that were created by the seeder.   The Monday following the Jim Henry (Sept. 9th).  I plan on tackling additional areas throughout the property especially high traffic and Tee to Fairway areas.

Bentgrass Grooming on the Greens:

This past Monday we began our Fall Grooming on all putting surfaces.  Grooming is needed to reduce density while improving the smoothness of the putting surface.  Why reduce density, you ask?  Well, the main factor is to address the amount of bentgrass that is incorporated into our greens and begins to create runners over the summer months (or as I would say, becomes "leggy").  An additional factor is that both the Poa and Bent becomes a touch bumpy during the summer months because of the heat and active growing throughout the day tends to make a puffiness and slows down green speeds throughout the day.  Long story short....a touch thinner aids in ball roll and green speeds.

Our main objective is for the Bentgrass, to tighten up those runners and make less "leggy".  We have a groomer attachment to a set of our reels for the Tri-plex.

Hopefully you can see the slight grooves that are created as it's removing the material

And finally we topdressed.
I plan on doing this every Monday in two directions from now till Aerfication on the 24-26 of September.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Seed Project

Over the next couple of weeks, you will see various areas of the golf course that have been scalped down and marked with irrigation flags to indicate areas that have been seeded with turf-type Tall Fescue.  The areas have been identified as a result of multiple factors:
  • High traffic areas due to cart and foot traffic
  • The disease of Summer Patch (which is common in our existing Kentucky Bluegrass)
  • Areas that have thinned over the summer months that contained a high concentration of Annual Bluegrass (Poa)
The goal is to address the areas on a yearly basis and incorporate turf-type Tall Fescue, through the process listed below, for an improved playing surface and healthier stand of turf.  Tall Fescue is a strong cultivar to introduce because of it's heat/drought tolerance, ability to survive in a wide range of soil structures and it's resistance to common diseases in this region (including Summer Patch).   

The following pictures outline the process:

First step after identifying the area is to mow at a lower height (scalp) to produce a seed bed

We then used our Seeder in two directions, which cut slits 1/4 inch deep and drops the seeds into the grooves

End Result
It will take us close to two days to complete the process through out the course (mainly due to the 140 player outing today).  On Wednesday we will put down some starter fertilizer in all the areas to provide the needed nutrients for establishment.   We should start to see germination within 8-10 days, but with the projected could be faster!
You will see the Assistants and I, watering these areas over the next couple of weeks to promote establishment,  we ask for your patience and please try to avoid the outlined areas with your carts if at all possible.  Us working together will greatly improve the turnaround as we continue to build towards the future!
Thank you for your cooperation!