Thursday, May 27, 2010

Renovation Update

Cool weather is not helping us out with the establishment of sod or seed in our renovated areas. The areas that were seeded are showing a slight greenish hue but still a long ways to go for these areas to be ready for play. It looks to be a bit warmer for a few days starting on Sunday so maybe this will get the seedlings going in the right direction. Next week we will begin to fertilize the seeded areas with a spray application of calcium nitrate and a micronutrient package. We did this during the initial grow-in of the golf course and it really worked well. Also next week we will cut back on the watering of these areas which will dry them out a bit so that when we are able to start mowing there will be a firm surface. The sodded areas look very good. We have been giving them a heavy topdressing which has smoothed out the surfaces. I would like to have them in play as soon as three weeks from now. I will snap a few pictures when the sun is shinning and post them as soon as possible.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Renovation Update and Seeding

A small update on our progress with the renovated areas as well as the seeding process that continues on the greens and green surrounds. We have made a lot of progress despite the weather. Below are just a few pictures recently taken.

New green extension on #3. The turf looks very good and is responding well to fertilizer applications and heavy topdressings of sand.

Seeded area on #4 which is showing new seedlings. This area was seeded on May 4th. I would suspect that a greenish hue will be showing in next weeks pictures.

The new green surround on #8 behind the green. Currently, we are mowing this area along with #7 at approach height so it is in play. More topdressing of sand will eventually smooth and firm up these areas. You can see the amount of sand we put down every two weeks.

Brushing in the topdressing sand. We initially drag in with a brush towed behind a gator and then finish with a broom. By finishing with a broom, we are able to make sure that the low areas have enough sand for the grass to growth up through eventually creating a smoother surface.

The seeding of the thinner areas on our greens continues. Here is an example of the process on #11.

The Proseed, has a roller with spikes on it creating holes as the implement travels across the green. Our fine fescue blend of seed is dropped immediately behind the roller falling into the holes.

An application of a diatomaceous earth product called Axis is then spread over the seeded areas. This product will hold the moisture needed for germination and aid in water retention after establishment. Since most of these areas are on the high spots of the greens, it takes more water to keep these areas moist due to gravity. The diatomaceous product will hold the necessary moisture that the turfgrass needs throughout the season. We should see a dramatic response in the form of overall turfgrass health, less handwatering and less turf loss during periods of stress.

Brushing in the seed, diatomaceous earth and a little sand into the holes created by the seeder.

We should see all of these areas in much better shape soon. In conjuncetion with this process, we will be renting a mower that has a flexible cutting unit in order to mow the undulations correctly. This mower will arrive late this week so expect to see pictures next week and and explanation on the initial results.

Monday, May 3, 2010

May Projects

It is already the month of May and we have a lot of projects ahead of us on the golf course. The golf course maintenance staff is dedicating the month of May to turfgrass quality, repair, seeding and overall color.

As mentioned in our last blog, the seeding of the newly renovated areas has started. Today we seeded the areas on holes #4 and #7. Tomorrow we will finish the seeding on holes #6, #13 and #16. Along with the seeding, we have began cutting out areas of weak or worn out turf so that we can replace with good healthy sod. You will see various areas throughout the back nine that are either new areas or areas ready for sod. This process will continue until all of these areas are fixed.

The most important area that we will focus on are our greens. Last week we hosted the Tetherow Fourball during which our green speeds were between a 9.3 and 9.8. We will maintain a 9.2 for the golfing season. I feel that we are right on track to achieve this goal and that our greens have become faster sooner compared to last season. As you may have noticed, a few of the greens have some areas that were damaged this past winter. This week we are going to start addressing these areas. Drill seeding, topdressing with sand and diatomaceous particles along with a wetting agent application should remedy these areas. Any other areas that are completely bare, we will replace with healthy turf.

As for the color, we will continue to fertilize and maintain the current color. Tetherow is not going to be a "green" golf course. We strive to maintain a color that is not so green. Due to the fine fescue and colonial bentgrass mixture, our fertility rates are rather low compared to other golf courses in the area and with low fertility comes a not so green golf course. Just look at it as a golf course that is firm and fast that produces longer drives off the tee. Always a good thing for most of us average golfers.

From the golf course maintenance crew, have a great week.