Today both courses were closed for necessary maintenance activities. In the absence of play our efficiency increases and it means these tasks are not done during the week in play. Here is a partial list of the agronomic and maintenance practices we accomplished today:
Topdressed both North and South greens.
Applied granular nutrient products to North greens.
Sprayed South greens twice with fungicides and fertility products.
Topdressed approaches South Course.
Excavate holes for new trees North Course.
Tree removals North Course.
Training of new staff.
Install flowers at clubhouse.
Driving range maintenance: divots/edging/bunkers etc.
This past Monday, May 6th, the Wee One Foundation fundraiser at Lost Dunes Golf Club raised over $30,000 for the foundation. Lost Dunes was a great host and superintendent Steve Jotzat had the course in great shape. We are already planning the 2014 event and as we have sold out quickly for four consecutive years ... it is wise to sign up early.
There are many common species of solitary bees that nest in the ground. Solitary bees construct individual nest tubes, each with its own opening.
They often nest in large congregations with many nesting holes arranged very closely together.
Ground nesting bees generally prefer nesting in areas with morning sun exposure and well drained soils containing little organic matter ... like bunker faces. Tunnels are excavated in areas of bare ground or sparse vegetation and damp soils are avoided.
1.55" of rain has fallen during the past 48 hours. The golf course is wet, but it has been very good for the South greens that were aerified this past Sunday. They look great.
We are in the process of lowering the height on both the North and South greens and by next Tuesday they should be in fine shape.
The North Course tree removals have halted for the moment. We will finish the remaining removals once the golf course closes in August. A total of 121 trees will be removed and 71 new trees planted for a net loss of approximately 50 trees; less than 9% of the total tree inventory on the North.
CORE AERATION is one of the “dirty” words of golf course maintenance. With a golf season of seven months, many would question the necessity of disrupting play each spring and fall.
An important purpose behind core aerification is the removal of unwanted organic matter, allowing roots to grow. With a healthier root system heading into the golf season, the grass plant is better able to withstand the stress of traffic. Aeration also relieves compaction, promotes air exchange and helps with water infiltration.
How much aerification is enough?
There is no rule of thumb for what percentage of surface area should be impacted each year. It would be safe to say however that it is difficult to “over aerify”. The USGA suggests that 15-20% of the surface should be aerified each year. This would dictate a larger hole size – and closer spacing between holes during the aerification process – both spring and fall. Changing from a 1/4” tine to a 1/2” tine increases the surface area impacted by four times. Using a 5/8” tine versus a 1/2” tine increases the surface area impacted by approximately 50%.
How long after aerification before the greens are back to normal?
With cooperative weather, the healing process will take 10 - 14 days. Extra fertilizer and water are applied at this time to expedite recovery.
Some of the seasonal staff have returned and are getting both courses ready for play. Along with course cleanup and filling stump holes on the North, we are preparing all of the bunkers for play, starting on the North Course. We should finish those by this weekend and will start on the South bunkers next week.
Thank you to the members who took the time to come down and see the Turf Care Center last night. Most were a little shocked to find out that for the price of a rough mower ... you could by a Lexus or an Audi ... or a house.
Oakland Hills Director of Agronomy since 1997.
Wakonda Club, Des Moines IA Golf Course Superintendent 1992-1997.
Golf de Joyenval, Paris France
Grow-in Superintendent 1990-1992.
Medinah CC, Course Superintendent 1986-1990.