With the official end of the golf season fast approaching, I’d like to share with you whats on the Green departments schedule for the next two months. Aerification, seeding, aerifcation, topdressing, aerification, fertilizing and more aerification! Oh, and leaf clean up too!!
Starting Thursday October 26, we will began aerating the perimeter of some greens, collars and roughs around greens. This will continue through next week with the addition of slit seeding of fairways beginning with 1,10 & 18 and the balance of the front 9 fairways along with aerification of the gray leaf spot damaged step cuts.
The green and collar aerification will be done with 1/4″ holes and shouldn’t have a large affect on ball roll, neither should slit seeding of fairways, its very non invasive once completed. The aerification of the step cuts will be disruptive but confined to the weakest of them, i.e. 1, 10,18 etc.
In the following weeks, we are planning on aerating more large areas of the rough. This will have to balance with leaf clean up as we use the same equipment to do both tasks.
Two dates you may want to note if you play in November are the 15 & 16. Weather permitting we will be bringing in an outside contractor for a process called “drill and fill” on greens. The process is very disruptive to the point of greens not being puttable until after we process them. Here is a video link to the process:
In the video, the machine is equipped with actual drill bits. These bits bring subsoil to the surface which should be removed to reduce the risk of creating a impermeable layer on the surface of the green. To prevent this, we have the contractor use a solid bit that brings nothing to the surface. We then do an extra step by aerating the greens with 1/4″ solid tines after the machines are finished on a green. This additional step provides channels for the excess sand that remains on top of the green to be incorporated in the the top 3 1/2″ of the putting surface thus providing additional pore space and reducing the amount of wasted sand. I need to emphasize the fact of dry environmental conditions must prevail throughout the entire process to be efficient and successful. The benefits of this type of aeration is the 12″ depth that the machine achieves. This depth is 8 1/2″ deeper than our traditional aerifing process and provides deep channels for air/gas exchange, root growth and water percolation. An email reminder will be sent out the week before and it will be posted on the “members only” section of the website. I will also include updates on the process on the website and if times allows, this blog.
With leaf dropping season getting started early this year(although it has subsided in the last week or so for whatever reason), I’d like to throw caution in the wind as the dry warm fall will probably alter how we handle the leaves this year. Normally the roughs are growing vigorously right now and we are able to mulch the majority of fallen leaves. Since this fall hasn’t been normal, and the rough is sparse in may places from being drought stressed, I’m concerned that we may have to pick up the majority of the leaves and transport them to the recycle center to the left of 3. This is very laborious and time consuming! Mulching them can only be successful if we are able to match the growth rate of the grass which is impossible under these current dry condition. Hopefully normal precipitation will prevail to rejuvenate the roughs and allow us to expedite leaf clean up.