Saturday, December 14, 2019

“All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost; the old that is strong does not wither, deep roots are not reached by the frost.” —J.R.R. Tolkien

On the  course from September through December...... in pictures.

9/15/19     #2 Green  
9/18/19     #10 Rough
9/28/19     #7 Green
10/8/19      #2 Green 
11/15/19     #17 Green
11/21/19     #6 Green
11/23/19      #2 Green
12/7/19     #8 Green
12/8/19      #7 Green
12/9/19   #7 Green

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Checking in on our fall tee seeding....

In Early October, when we still had some great growing weather,  we shut down some selected tee boxes that struggled during the season for various reasons.

 10/10/19     #6 Blue/white tee box

Old school tree lined tee box that presents us with many issues. One of the major issues are the tree roots competing with the turf  for water and nutrients with the tree usually winning the battle especially during stressful conditions(i.e hotter temps/heavy play). Another huge issue is the turf not being able to get enough light (in shade a good portion of day) to be able to photosynthesize and produce food for the plant to properly recover and regenerate. In the end it's just a very small area of limited usable space that gets beat up rather quickly.

11/9/19         #6 Blue/white tee box

The temporary fix just before the cold weather was to core aerify, seed, sand, walk mow and keep play off the rest of winter. Long term we will need to probably thin out some of the branches to allow more sunlight,  root prune along side of the tee, and bring in soil to create a larger teeing surface.

 10/10/19       #6 Red/Gold tee box

A small sand based push up tee. Hard to hold moisture . High usage and limited usable tee space.

11/9/19       #6 Red/Gold tee box

Core aerified, seed and sanded

11/9/19           #15 Red/Gold tee box

Another sand based push up tee with horrible sprinkler coverage on a 30 year old block system. Hard to hold moisture and another with limited usable tee space.

12/11/19         #15 Red/Gold tee box

Short term fix was to aerify, seed and sand. We also had to hand water a few days a week. Long term would be updating the 30 year old block style irrigation and rebuild tee to double tee space.

Friday, October 11, 2019

Fall Aerification wraps up September

A look back at aerificaion

We got through another fall aerification successfully even with the rains and a shortage of crew members. We aerified front 9 fairways the first week of September with 1" x 11.5" solid tines at a depth of 5". During the week we also verticut front 9 tees and approaches. The second week we did the greens and approaches with a 5/8" tine at spacing grid of 1.5". The third week we wrapped up the back 9 fairways and tee aerification and finished the verticutting process on the back 9 tees and approaches.

greens aerification
moving plugs with backpack blowers for the sweeper
topdress and brush
brush and roll and ready for play
solid tine of fairways
mow cut at .120 and a roll on a heavy dew morning...... 20 days post aerification
first cut at .110  ....... 30 days post aerification

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

If lightning is the anger of the gods, then the gods are concerned mostly about trees. -Lao Tzu

We had two lightning strikes(that we know for sure) that actually touched ground on golf course property last Saturday night. The first  strike was in the middle of the second half of #5 fairway, causing damage to our rainbird controller and frying 8 sprinkler head solenoids. The second strike hit a tree on the pond on #14. That strike actually sent tree bark debris 20-30 yards. 

A storm a brewing.......

Time to find cover
Lightning strike #5 fairway
Tree hit #14 pond
Tree bark explosion

Friday, July 26, 2019

Dealing with Summer Stress

Turf decline during the summer months usually is a combination of many factors. Here at PDS our turf issues usually revolve around mechanical stress(frequent mowing and cart traffic) during prolonged periods of high temperatures(not enjoyed by cool season turf), and disease from high humidity after heavy rainfall during the monsoon season. Some of the practices we do before and during this time to try and stay ahead of the game are:    hand watering and syringing, needle tine venting of greens, solid tine aeration of hard compacted areas in fairways, spoon feeding nutrients, applying preventative fungicides, spraying wetting agents/penetrants to needed areas and alternating between rolling and mowing greens during high stress periods.

Needle tine venting..... it's all about the root zone

This process creates a small hole in the green surface without removing any material. A relatively painless process that helps relieve compaction and more importantly increasing oxygen content in the soil for better root and soil health and displacing harmful excess build up of CO2(carbon dioxide). 
We alternate every 2-3 weeks during the summer stress periods with either a 5 or 8 mm tine at a depth of 3" on a 2" x 2" grid.

June 26th......needle tine greens with 5mm tines
5mm tines on a 2x2 grid at a 3" depth
Double roll following
ready for play
July 16..... needle tine greens with 8mm tines

8mm tines on a 2x2 grid at a depth of 3"
ready for play after a roll and mow

Summer stress and the Poa(annual blugrass)

The poa in our fairways usually starts to check out once we start getting extended periods of tempertatures around 90F and soil temperatures in the 70 -77F range.... and then you factor in the high humidity during the monsoon and our cool season turf is NOT very happy. Cool-season turfgrasses optimum growth level is at temperatures between 60 and 75°F . So when we get these extended periods of heat the already weakened plants will be extremely susceptible to damage from pressures such as heat, drought, traffic, disease, and insects. I'm sure many of you have noticed these areas in our fairways. In these areas we will continue doing a few different things. We will continue syringing these areas in the mornings and afternoons to help keep the canopy cool. We will also aerify with solid tines to increase oxygen levels in the soil and help with water penetration. We have also started to slit-seed the really bad areas in the fairways to try and establish some new growth during the monsoon. 

Slit seeding  #1 fairway
Slit seeding two directions #1 fairway
Slit seeding second half #15 fairway
Slit seeded/Top-dressed area front of approach #9