We are finishing up day one of a three day spell where temperatures are expected to reach almost 100 degrees each day. The turfgrasses on the playing surfaces at Fieldstone are included in a group of plants called, Cool Season Turfgrasses. These plants begin to shut down when temperatures reach over 90 degrees. Needless to say this is occurring now. So, what are some of the things we do to keep the turf alive through this stressful period.
-Use of fans on #8 green to lower the temperature of the turf canopy
-Raise the height of cut to minimize stress on the turf
-Mow less often
-Use wetting agents on dry spots to try and correct any water repellency in the soil
-Monitor soil moisture levels. Too wet can be just as bad as too dry since extra water in the rootzone coupled with the high temperatures will cook the roots.
Most importantly, the biggest help is what was done before this hot and dry spell. Healthier plants withstand the stress of drought and heat better then poorly growing plants. A healthy root system through proper aerification, fertility, irrigation management, etc is truly the key to success in these situations. So while we try and help the turf through this period, the heavy lifting has already been done to get the turf ready.
Here's a picture of a staff member handwatering #14 fairway.