Monday, July 30, 2012

Weekly Schedule for July 30-August 5, 2012

Weather and unforeseen conditions can/will change the schedule.

-Spot aerify and topdress stressed areas in fairways #2, #3 and #4. We still have not seen the rebound from the growth regulators as I discussed last week. In preparation we gave the tees and fairways an extra shot of Nitrogen fertilizer today so when the rebound occurs in the next week they will be ready. The growth is not noticed overnight, but we can tell by the amount of clippings we get when the tees and fairways are mowed. There will still be some areas that we will need to aggressively seed and/or sod. By the end of August we will know where those areas are.

-We are doing a lot of post-emergent herbicide applications to weeds in rough. Our pre-emergent was split into two applications. The second application occurred right at the beginning of our 30 plus days without rain in mid-June. The pre-emergent is activated by soil moisture. Although it was watered in via the irrigation system, there is nothing quite like natural rainfall. It's my belief the second application of the pre-emergent is not working as well due to the dry conditions. This has occurred at other courses in the area as well.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Rain.....Now What?

Last night we received 0.8" of rain. It was much needed. We are still much below average but every little bit helps since natural rainfall is the best type of irrigation.

If the weather over the next few months remains near average I'd expect most of the areas in the fairways to recover within 4-6 weeks. Those areas that do not will be seeded and/or sodded.

We have been using plant growth regulators during the heat so the plants will focus their energy to the roots as opposed to new leaf growth. Even though the plants will turn brown during heat stress most are not actually dead, but dormant. The extra energy stored in the roots during this time helps them survive until a break in the weather occurs. The fairways will come out of regulation in the next 1-2 weeks and a surge in leaf growth will occur. This will aid in recovery as well.

Also, please follow our recommended guidelines for driving range use. The red arrow is pointing to what we DO NOT want to occur, which is a large area without turf. The green arrow points to the proper method with is to leave strips between long lines of divots for faster recovery. Thank you for your help with this.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Weekly Schedule for July 23-29, 2012

Weather and unforeseen conditions can/will change the schedule.

-Monday we will star tine then lightly dust sand on greens
-Aerification and topdressing of stressed areas in fairways

Monday, July 16, 2012

Weekly Schedule for July 16-22, 2012

Weather and unforeseen conditions can/will change the schedule.

-Received 0.85" of rain over the weekend. Big help, but need much more.
-5th application of the AquaSphere balls from Bioverse to lakes. So far, so good. It's natural and slow but is certainly working.
-Prep and detail work for Invitational.
-Next Monday (23rd) we will spot aerify and seed stressed areas in fairways.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

What is This?

I almost did not recognize what this was when it occurred Saturday morning:

It's rain! We received 0.25 inches. While not a lot, any little bit helps at this point.

I've compiled rainfall records from the past 11 years and found out that the first 6 months of 2012 have been the driest of all. Not only has it been the driest, it's TWICE as dry as the second driest January-June time period.

The course remains in good shape for what we have had to go through weather wise and remain confident most of the stressed areas will bounce back once the weather cooperates.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

News and Notes-July 11, 2012

-It has been 29 days since we have had measurable rainfall.

-Fairways and tees are recovering nicely. Turf Screen was applied Monday to tees and fairways. Yesterday and today a wetting agent was applied to tees and fairways. The Turf Screen acts as a sunscreen would but with turf, not allowing harmful light, called UVB radiation, to reach the plant but allowing beneficial light in for plant growth. Not a cure all, but it is helping. The wetting agent helps make our irrigation more efficient by spreading out the moisture through the soil on fairways and tees.

-Seen some cart damage on fairways #12 and #14 so we are cautiously and slowly allowing carts to return to the fairways depending on the weather.

-Please let me know your thoughts and comments on hitting off the bermudagrass located on the lower driving range tee.

-Greens are very healthy!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Weekly Schedule for July 9-15, 2012

Weather and unforeseen conditions can/will change the schedule.

-Applying a product called Turf Screen to tees and fairways on Monday to aid in recovery of these areas.
-Apply wetting agents to tees and fairways on Tuesday/Wednesday to aid in recovery
-Use a hard rake in the bottom of the bunkers to soften them up a bit

Picture of the rootzone temperature from Saturday afternoon.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Layering is for Cakes

Our last measurable rainfall was on June 12th. Coupled with a lack of snow over the winter means the soil moisture levels are very low. If the weather forecasters are correct and we experience a cool down in temperatures starting Monday we will let carts on fairways starting Tuesday. Let's hope the weather forecasts are correct! Again, we are looking at several options so we can have carts on fairways as much as possible. Several of these look promising.

Overall collars are undoubtedly improved. The problem ones remain a problem but we know why they are a problem and are actively implementing the solutions. Here's a picture I posted last year of the soil profile of one of our bad collar areas that I zoomed in on:

The red arrow is pointing to a light brown clay layer that came in on the sod. The blue arrow points to a much darker layer where water has not penetrated through this clay layer and is forming an anaerobic (without oxygen) condition for the roots. This is repeated an inch below. The black arrow points to a DryJect hole backfilled with a material called Profile. Laboratory tests have shown no diseases present but an anaerobic condition where the plants are trying to grow causing a lack of adventitious roots and roots hairs. These are the types of roots that nutrients and water pass through into the plant.

Aggressive aerification is the answer! Removal of these layers is the key. Plus using boards to turn mowers on and other practices to reduce stress on the collars have and will improve these areas even more.

This week we sent another sample off to measures the physical characteristics of this area. Hopefully we can get a little bit clearer idea of how much aerification will be needed.

Some may be asking why we do not remove the rootzone to a depth below the layering and start anew. While an option, this will cause another set of problems, plus we do not want to sod which is the cause of the layering in the first place.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Stairs to #15 Tees

The stairs to #15 Blue and Black tee are now open! We will be moving the trash can, ball washer and spike cleaner to the area across from the stairs as time allows. Below are pictures of the construction process.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Cart Path Only For Now

This picture was not taken at Fieldstone but is a great example of why we are cart path only:

Monday, July 2, 2012

Bermudagrass on Driving Range Tee

Starting tomorrow (Tuesday) we will have the driving range set-up on the lower tee. This will give us a chance to evaluate how the different types of bermudagrass recover from divots.

In this picture the red arrow points to bentgrass and the blue arrow points to the bermudagrass. Obviously the bermudagrass enjoys the heat and needs less water than the bentgrass. Once the weather cools and we get some rain the bentgrass will become healthy and strong.

Weekly Schedule for July 2-8, 2012

Weather and unforeseen conditions can/will change the schedule.

-Star tine greens on Monday. Should be healed in a few days.
-We are taking a less is more approach this week. Due to the heat and drought we are currently experiencing it is best to "baby" the turf rather then put more stress on it.
-Weather note: Average rainfall January-June is 24 inches. Total January-June of this year, less than 12 inches.

Sunday, July 1, 2012