Friday, May 24, 2013

Golf Course Update

Never would I have imagined that at the end of May we would have a high of 60 degrees as we are experiencing today. But do not worry next week we will be back up into the high 80's. This past week we continued with our club house plants on the drive way trees. We are awaiting another order to finish the rest of the trees as you pass the parking lot. Another area that we dressed up was around the short game, the trees we have there have had plants added to there base. From the golf course we successfully completed the MGA Guest Day and slowly but surely tiding up some loose ends for the season prep. This  week we  groomed greens and although this is a great benefit to the greens it does have its draw backs such as actually making the greens a little slower than normal, but rest assured they will pick back up in a couple of mowing's. If you are wondering what is grooming, using a special machine we can cut down into the turf canopy with blades that remove any grass that is being laid over. A laid over leaf blade does not get cut by the mower. This is a process that will be continued until the onset of warm weather and will help us manage the greens density.

 Next week I will be at Merion gaining some insight to how they set up there golf course before a major tournament, such as grooming, lowering heights and prepping bunkers. I hope to take some pictures and pass along what I have learned. 

As you can see here Ovidio is placing the second addition
on the drive way trees. And those weeds will be sprayed tomorrow!

I did enlist some help from my oldest daughter, Bailey. Although
helpful, smelling the flowers was more important.

Driving in circles is the quickest and most efficient way
to groom for us.

After the grooming you can see grass clumps left over, most
of this is from the grass that tends to lay over and not get mowed.

The mower operator here mows and picks up the grass clumps.

Above the camera case is a groomed section, below has not
yet been groomed.

You almost cannot even see what we have done after a groom, mow and roll. 

Friday, May 17, 2013

Golf Course Update and Club House Plantings

This week has been very busy and we took advantage of the warm weather (except for the Frost Delay on Tuesday) that looks to be here until the fall. The golf course is shaping up and the mulch beds are just about complete. You may have noticed some work being performed on the back of the range and I am glad to say, that we will be finished with the Teaching Tee extension on Monday. We shifted into high gear on our club house plantings after the frost and there are some notable additions that will contribute to the over all look. Plantings also took place on the golf course around the Tee monuments. 
Monday we top dressed greens 

Greens top dressing being dragged in, this brush also help
stand up the grass for a much better cut.

The teaching tee extension getting its first top dressing.

Sodding around the new Teaching Tee

Front of the new tee

New additional planting around the tennis parking lot

This area is to the right of the club house 

This is to the left of the club house 

Plants added to the drive way trees near the main entrance,
this is placed on every other tree and we are awaiting our
other half next week. They will be placed where we have the
tree lights installed.

A close up, regarding the picture above.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

On Course etiquette: It's everyone's responsibility

On course etiquette: It's everyone's responsibility


Presented by the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America

A famous college basketball coach once said that recruiting was like shaving -- miss just one day and you look bad. It could be said that golf course management personnel, especially superintendents, feel the same way about golfer etiquette on the course.
Golf course etiquette is an all-encompassing term that refers to demeanor, adherence to course maintenance rules, and dress, among other issues. However, most associate golf course etiquette to the concept of ball mark repair, divot replacement and raking bunkers. Take a moment and consider what a course would look like if patrons were excused from any of these activities for just one day. A well-managed facility would look like a battlefield.
Golf course personnel are unanimous in stating that, as a whole, golfers still do not do an adequate job in repairing their ball marks and divots. Despite the presence of posters, notes in newsletters and announcements in meetings to serve as reminders, most facility managers believe the message can never be repeated too much.
This becomes an even bigger issue as the game expands to include more juniors and those who have recently picked up the sport. Instructors and experienced golfers should be diligent in teaching the how and why of golf course etiquette. Failing to teach golfers the proper techniques now creates future problems.

Why it's important

The basis for ball mark repair and divot replacement is for competitive and agronomic reasons. Balls that land in unrepaired divots place a golfer at a disadvantage, just as having to putt over a ball mark. By leaving turf damaged (unrepaired), it becomes susceptible to disease and/or infestation of weeds, resulting in a lower quality of playing surface. This necessitates the need for attention by golf course superintendents and their staffs, thereby taking them away from more pressing duties. As a general rule, a ball mark repaired within 10 minutes will heal with a smooth surface within two to three days. An unrepaired ball mark may take as long as three weeks to heal, but the result will be an uneven surface.

Replacing divots

Because grass varieties differ from course to course, and from fairways to the rough, the best rule to follow in replacing divots is to check with the golf course superintendent for the particular policy. As a general rule, replace any divot on the course unless there is a sand or sand/seed mixture provided in a container on the golf car. Typically, the divot is replaced on any course with bentgrass or bluegrass fairways. If you are playing on a course with bentgrass fairways and bluegrass rough, you must pay particular attention to the materials in the container. If just sand is provided, then fill the divot hole and tamp down the sand with your foot. If a sand/bentgrass seed mixture is provided, divots in the rough would not be replaced so as to not contaminate the bluegrass with bentgrass seed. In bermudagrass fairways, generally sand is just used.
In replacing a divot, the policy is to replace the divot so the grass can send down new roots. If so, replace the turf in the same direction it came out, and tap down firmly so the mower won't pull it back out. If you are walking and no sand is provided, smooth the divot hole with your feet, gently pulling the sides of the divot hole to the center.

Raking bunkers

Bunkers pose enough trouble themselves. Imagine playing from them when they are left unraked. To avoid leaving a poor playing surface, follow these tips:
  • Enter and exit the bunker at the point closest to your ball.This will ensure you do not displace too much sand.
  • Alternate between pulling the sand toward you and pushing it away from you to make the surface even. This will make the bunker surface even without sand displacement.
  • All holes and footprints should be smoothed over upon exiting the bunker.
  • Be sure there are no indentations in the previously disturbed sand.
  • After rake completion, the USGA recommends that the bunker rake should be placed outside the bunker laying flat and facing the direction of play.
  • USGA reminds golfers that the proper term is “bunker,” and never “trap.”
For more information regarding golf course maintenance and etiquette, contact your local superintendent or the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America at 800-472-7878 or