Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Hot Start, Meeting Expectations, and Links Love Affair!

Hello and welcome to The Greenkeeper!  Today is Wednesday, July 4th and allow me to wish everyone a very happy Independence Day!  I know you're probably planning some golf and/or family activities for today's holiday so I promise not to keep you long.  In typical Charlotte fashion it's warm and humid as the dog days of summer have arrived.  We'll talk a little about how June stacked up to recent summers, the impact of heat and humidity to our bentgrass putting greens, I'll give everyone a reminder of next week's course closure for fairway aeration, and then I have something extra for all the nerdy links golf lovers if you're interested.  So let's get started.

Yesterday was the hottest day of the year thus far as we nearly tied a record high from 1931 not to mention the heat index reached 108 degrees F!
If you've been thinking it's been warm lately you're not mistaken.  After winter lingered far too long into spring the pattern changed when June arrived.  After averaging 3.89 inches rain each of the first five months of 2018, June saw our lowest total with only 1.68 inches.  The number of days we have reached 90 degrees F or above is the most since 2011 making the summer of 2018 a warm one for starters.

Despite the heat I'm very pleased to announce our greens have fared the first month of summer in excellent condition.  Usually this time of year I'm saying things like, "One Down and Two to Go" referencing the months of meteorological summer.  This year is no different, it always feels good to have one in the books but it feels even better this year because we are exceeding your expectations.
June 29, 2018
We recently wrapped up two major events, Donald Ross Day and The Ross Cup and the feedback I've received regarding the condition of our putting surfaces and the course as a whole has been overwhelmingly positive.  It's little things like the text exchange below and the tweet from Graham Stephens that make all the team's hard work worthwhile.   

"Near perfect", I'll take that after the hottest day of the year.  This past Monday we vented the greens to promote gas exchange and applied preventive fungicide as the heat wave continues.  Good news is there is some immediate relief in sight as a significant cool down with lower humidity arrives this weekend.  Not sure how long the reprieve will last but it's always nice to catch your breath even briefly during the dog days.

ICYMI - the course will be closed this coming Monday and Tuesday (July 9 and 10) for fairway aeration.  You may recall this was postponed from mid June due to a scheduling conflict.  During the course closure we will apply approximately 300 tons of sand topdressing to our 30 acres of tees, fairways, and approaches.  The areas will also receive a solid tine aeration.  
Despite our wealth of large equipment the process is very time consuming necessitating the two-day closure.  For those of you that follow on Twitter, yes you can keep tabs on our progress as I've already received one request for live action videos. :)
And finally, I said I would have a little something for the links lovers out there.  The Irish Open starts tomorrow, this year played at Ballyliffin Golf Club in County Donegal.  Here's a cool video promoting this year's event featuring their course manager tending to the links.

Then it's off to East Lothian, Scotland for this year's Scottish Open played over the links at Gullane Golf Club.  I know from following Gullane's course manager, Steward Duff things have been unseasonably warm and dry and the links are a bit toasty.  You may recall last month seeing a video of a toppled hospitality tent making the rounds on social media.  That was at Gullane during the build out for this year's event when Storm Hector wreaked a little havoc on the region CLICK HERE.  Also, the tournament's website is featuring this neat 360 degree map of the links you might enjoy CLICK HERE.  

After that it's off to Carnoustie for the playing of the 147th Open Championship.  Craig Boath, Head Greenkeeper at Carnoustie Golf Links and the team has been putting the finishing touches on the old links for some time now.  
So there you have it, three weeks of links golf, how can you not be excited.  Hope everyone enjoys today, celebrates safely and looking forward to seeing you next time.
See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS, MG

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Aeration Recap, More Sod, The Anderson, & The US Open!

Hello and welcome to The Greenkeeper!  Today is Tuesday, June 12th and so much has happened since I last posted.  We completed establishment of the two loads of sod we received in early May.  We conducted our annual Member-Member Championship over the Memorial Day holiday weekend, then we immediately core aerated and topdressed all the putting greens.  

Since June 1 we have been playing catch up with our regular mowing schedule.  We aerated tees on the fourth, have been applying growth regulator to fairways and approaches, mowed all the warm-season native areas and today we are installing one final load of new sod to complete repairs to the South Range Tee.  Also, Stephen and Brett won The Anderson at Winged Foot and it's U.S. Open week at Shinnecock Hills, so let's get started.
I referenced we have been playing catch up with mowing.  We had 3.74 inches total rainfall at Carolina Golf Club in May but only one-half inch of that total fell in the first 15 days.  The last two weeks of May saw over 3 inches rainfall in 9 measurable rain events, including during the Member-Member.

Considering the forecast during the event and the rain all around us we definitely caught a break being able to complete all play, including a thrilling 3-way playoff in one very competitive flight, without delays.  

With the Member-Member behind us it was time to aerate greens once again.  You'll recall last time I referenced how this aeration is the final aeration planned for 2018, so it felt good when we wrapped things up on the second day.  We still had some weather related challenges as 0.60" rain fell on the entire team in less than 20 minutes on the final green of day 1.  But when you think back to the weather challenges we encountered in March CLICK HERE I won't complain one bit.
With aeration in the rear view mirror the team was excited to focus on mowing and grooming our playing surfaces.  The first half of June has been mostly dry with only 0.60" total rainfall thus far enabling us to get multiple cuts on the approaches, fairways, and rough.  We are currently enjoying the benefits of a second growth regulator application to closely mowed Bermudagrass playing surfaces and the definition is really starting to come into form.
Spectacular Morning!
An Uncommon View of No. 7
I referenced earlier we aerated tees last week and we have mowed all the warm-season native areas with our bush hog.  This is done to remove the old growth from last season along with any unwanted weeds to make room for this season's new growth.  Right now our plan is to mow these areas one or two more times before the end of summer to ensure a thick, healthy stand heading into fall.  All cool-season (fescue) areas were mowed in early spring and those areas are just now beginning to come into peak form with their trademark seedheads turning golden brown.  Those areas will only be treated for weeds between now and the end of the year, no mowing until next spring.
Squared Tees Are Cool

Bush Hogging!
Before I move on to some other interesting notes, early this morning the final sod truck arrived with new turf to complete repairs to the South Range Tee.  The majority of this teeing area did not survive winter thanks in large part to the tall trees just across the property fence.  That comfortable shade you enjoy while practicing in the summer unfortunately created too cold a micro-climate this past winter.  We installed new turf on the front half about 4 weeks ago and treatments to the remainder were unsuccessful in stimulating new growth and recovery thus necessitating the installation of new turf. 

We'll also button up a few other areas on the course and that should wrap up winter injury repairs for this year.  We do have a few areas that we will continue to push with extra fertility and spot aerate soon to encourage full recovery, but based on my conversations with my superintendent peers in the region, we made out pretty good only needing three truck loads of sod this year.

Okay, so before I go I would be remiss if I didn't share some exciting news as Carolina Golf Club members Brett Boner and Stephen Woodard won the 82nd Anderson Memorial at famed Winged Foot Golf Club this past weekend.  The Anderson is a coveted best-ball invitational for top amateur players from across the country.  Their strong play last year got them into the championship match before falling short, but this year they brought home the trophy!  

Congratulations and well played guys, now time to qualify for the upcoming U.S. Mid-Am! No pressure ;)

Before I go I want to share one final thing with you.  It's U.S. Open week and the tournament this year is being contested at Shinnecock Hills for the first time since 2004.  Last night on Live From there was an excellent piece hosted by Matt Ginella of Golf Channel featuring course superintendent Jon Jennings, his team and USGA Championship Agronomist, Darin Bevard.  Darin is a dear friend I've had the pleasure of knowing for over twenty years, going back to my graduate school days and his early days as a regional agronomist in the Mid-Atlantic Section.  After the piece aired Jon and Darin joined Rich Lerner for some live Q&A.  This clip is a little lengthy (about twenty minutes) but it has some great information that shows just how far turfgrass science has come since the last time the U.S. Open was held on these iconic Long Island links.  CLICK HERE 

Hope you enjoyed that glimpse behind the scenes.  Good luck to Jon, his team, Darin, and the army of volunteers and I hope everyone enjoys this year's second major championship, the U.S. Open.

See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS, MG

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

More Repairs, What's Next, & Important PSA!

Hello and welcome to The Greenkeeper!  Today is Wednesday, May 16th and it's time for another update to our winter injury repairs.  Also, we are currently between our two largest spring tournaments (Member-Guest and Member-Member) and believe it or not we will be aerating greens in just two weeks.  I know, that last statement is a little hard to swallow considering March and April were unkind to growth and recovery, but I will explain so please stay with me.

The last time we were together I shared where we utilized 20 pallets (10,000 square feet) of new turf.  Exactly one week later we acquired another 20 pallets and continued the process of "erasing" the unsightliest areas.  The team prepped all areas selected for repair on Maintenance Monday, making quick work of the installation when turf arrived early the following day (last Tuesday).  
Prepped Area No. 18
Twenty pallets of new turf takes up considerable space.  We were able to immediately load four into haulers and we do our best to store as much as possible in the shade.  We quickly installed all the prepped areas from the day before wrapping up repairs on holes 1, 9 and 18.  

Repairs to tees No. 9
Repairs to No. 1 fairway continued where we left off the week prior.  We had three areas in No. 18 fairway we strongly felt would not heal in a timely fashion and installed new turf.  Hole No. 9 saw repairs made to the three most forward tees and the collar adjacent to the front right portion of the green.  

We had approximately 3,000 square feet (6 pallets) remaining and we repaired an area on the slope between the club house and cart storage building and we turfed the steep area adjacent to the pool where the three large poplar trees were removed last year.  All remaining turf was then installed at the Back Range Tee.

At this time you may be asking yourself what about some areas that still appear thin or nearly void of turf.  True, we haven't completely replaced 100 percent of all injured areas, but I believe we have replaced those on the course that do not possess the capacity to heal themselves given more time now that winter is finally over and they're receiving a little TLC (water and fertilizer).  As for the Practice Range, we will wait until after the conclusion of the Member-Member and greens aeration, then reevaluate what's in need of repairs before acquiring any new turf.

It's important to realize we experienced a morning low temperature in the 30's just two weeks ago.  The Member-Guest was contested during the warmest stretch of the year (four straight days of 90 degree plus temperatures), and although it has cooled somewhat, the moisture in the atmosphere and constant threat of rain the next several days is just what both new sod and thin areas trying to recover need.  In other words the course will continue to improve with each passing day.  

I referenced above we are scheduled to aerate greens in just two weeks.  If you were in attendance at the Annual Meeting in January I addressed how we would be taking a different approach to greens aeration this season due to our involvement with co-hosting the U.S. Mid-Am.  The good news is we will not be aerating in early September per our normal schedule.  The first round of competition begins on September 22nd and to provide proper conditions it will be necessary to forego aerating near the championship.  Also, I do not want to aerate immediately following the championship because I want you and your guests to enjoy the remainder of the fall golf season without disruption.

That means we are essentially performing our normal fall aeration three months early, immediately after Memorial Day (bad news).  Now we have always aerated immediately after Memorial Day but the process has been on a smaller scale with the objective of bridging the gap between spring and fall.  With no fall aeration this year, it's imperative we aerate aggressively enough to carry us through the entire summer and into fall without worry.  So, although you will once again be encountering freshly aerated greens (cores removed, sand topdressed) in a couple weeks you can take solace knowing it will be March 2019 before you have to endure it again.  Also, I'm certain you will be pleasantly surprised at the quicker recovery this time of year compared to spring with soil temperatures now at levels conducive for turf growth.

A couple other items before I go.  The other day the USGA published a Public Service Announcement about golf cars and their use.  I shared it on Twitter but I wanted to include it in the blog CLICK HERE because it contains really good information.  Pay particular attention to No. 4 because whenever I'm asked what is the one thing that could make Carolina Golf Club even better I always answer less traffic.  With an elevated club house and multiple elevated teeing grounds the eye is always looking down at turf stressed by heavy cart use.  I attempted several years ago CLICK HERE to encourage everyone to operate golf cars ONLY in the fairways but the practice has never become widely adopted by everyone from my observations.  

It's pretty simple, if you want to see less stress and more thick, uniform turf then avoid driving over the same areas daily.  We do our best to use short stakes or stakes and ropes to direct everyone away from highly trafficked areas but we can only do so much and your help would be greatly appreciated as we strive to improve course conditions not only as we prepare for a national championship, but more importantly for your daily enjoyment.

And to end on a positive note, I couldn't help but enjoy the site yesterday of this large turtle crossing 18 fairway.  I guess he was ready to go for a swim and he wasn't about to let me interfere with his plans.

See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS, MG  

Thursday, May 3, 2018

SITREP - Turf Repairs!

Hello and welcome to The Greenkeeper!  Today is Thursday, May 3rd and I want to take this time and give you a situation report about the ongoing turf repair process at Carolina Golf Club.  You'll recall last time I described in detail where most of the damage occurred and laid out a replacement plan over a two-week period.  Unfortunately Mother Nature interrupted week one when we received rainfall over four consecutive days totaling over 3.5 inches, thus meaning week one was this week.  

Twenty pallets of Latitude 36 arrived first thing Tuesday morning and the team wasted little time initiating repairs.  Normally we prep (remove damaged turf, smooth grade, etc.) for new sod the day before a truck arrives, but our golf outing schedule did not permit a normal Maintenance Monday this week.  Therefore prep work had to take place simultaneously with repairs which slows the process.  
The team worked very hard and by late Tuesday afternoon we had repaired the damaged portions of collars on holes 10-13 and 16 along with some other repairs near the green and bunker complexes of holes 10 and 11.
Yesterday was a long day as the team worked hard installing the new turf on holes 1 and 2.  Portions of the collars and approaches were repaired on both holes but the bulk of the new turf was used along the right side of the first fairway.  We will begin prep work this coming Maintenance Monday to ensure sod repairs next Tuesday morning progress more efficiently.  Areas targeted for repair next week include holes 1, 9 and 18.  Any remaining sod will be utilized on the practice area.

That's all for now, time to water sod and rope it off to prevent anyone from inadvertently driving through it.  Please be cautious as areas immediately adjacent may be wetter than anticipated and as always, free relief is granted from Ground Under Repair.

See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS, MG

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Winter Injury, Earth Science and Tomatoes!

Hello and welcome to The Greenkeeper!  Today is Wednesday, April 18th and Winter Kill is defined in Merriam-Webster as "to kill a plant (or part of a plant) by exposure to winter conditions."  Now, that is a vague definition, but winter kill is a vague phenomenon as exposure to low temperatures alone are not the sole cause of plant injury or death.  To be clear, I am speaking solely about warm-season grasses and specifically about Bermudagrass.

We have over 100 acres of Bermudagrass growing on our tees, fairways, rough, and practice areas, and there are reports of winter injury and winter kill surfacing throughout North and South Carolina again this spring.  This article by the Carolinas Golf Association (CLICK HERE) was released less than two weeks ago as an alert to golfers and owners to help everyone better understand what conditions they are currently experiencing on their golf courses.  Granted the article focuses more on recent ultra-dwarf Bermudagrass putting green conversions, but Bermudagrass grown at any height of cut can be subject to the whims of Mother Nature.  
No. 1 Fairway
I stated above low temperature alone is not a sole cause and factors such as low light (shade), elevated moisture (too wet), and heavy traffic significantly contribute to Bermudagrass injury during cold winters.  Sometimes just a fraction of an inch more in height of cut, or one or two degrees more of temperature can be a difference maker.
This past Monday we assessed the overall health and condition of our 100 acres and determined about 1 acre, or one percent suffers from significant winter injury requiring replacement.  There are some additional areas although injured with enough healthy plant material present they will heal with a little extra management (fertilizer and water) as soon as Mother Nature agrees to provide appropriate growing conditions (but that's a different topic).  Today I want to talk a little about the areas needing replacement, and how we plan to repair them.  But before we get deep into those details let's take a closer look at the golf course from above to gain a better understanding of the types of winter injury we've encountered and why.
Google Earth Image of Carolina GC
Remember back in elementary school when they taught us in Earth Science the sun always rises in the east and sets in the west, and the sun makes its way across the southern sky on its daily trek across the earth.  In the summer the sun travels at a very high arc, nearly overhead and the days are long and quite warm.  In the winter however, the sun is much lower in the sky and the days are shorter.  Also, because the sun is lower in the sky, that angle creates long shadows formed by objects (trees, buildings, etc.) located on the south side.  
Hole No. 1
Holes No. 11 & 12

When I was growing up in VA my grandparents lived in a ranch house that faced due north.  In the winter months there was either frost or snow lingering in the shadow of the house long after it was gone in other portions of the yard.  In the two photos above you notice the trees located to the south and west (in the case of 11 & 12) of the respective golf holes and thus it's easier to understand why the turf in this area of the property may be subjected to more winter related injury than others.
Hole No. 9
Hole No. 16

Holes 9 and 16 are also not immune as they both possess large trees growing on their southern sides that create cooler micro-climates throughout the dormant season.  Even the practice tee located at the back of the range is at risk, as those same trees that provide comfortable shade in the summer provides too much shade during the coldest of winters.
Back Range Tee
Does this mean we need to cut down all the trees?  No, especially since not all the trees I've highlighted are growing on club property.  But what it does mean is there is a reason the majority of winter turf injury during extreme cold years occurs mostly on the southern border of the property.  In fact, of the entire one acre of turf loss estimated approximately 95 percent of it is located in those areas I highlighted above.
Tale of Two Halves
Interestingly, it is not just a factor of trees and shade either.  Do you also remember in Earth Science that cold air sinks and hot air rises?  Well, the area above the blue line is the portion of highest elevation on the property compared to below.  The highest place on the golf course is the tee box on Hole No. 6 at roughly 765 feet above sea level and most of Hole No. 1, along with No.'s 11, 12, and 13 all sit below 700 feet (now you know why most putts break towards No. 1 green).  Sixty-five feet in elevation may not sound like much but when you are talking about prolonged exposure to extreme winter conditions that may cause plant injury, even a few feet can be the difference in a degree or two.

So now you understand why the injured turf on the golf course is located where it is on property, and you want to know what we are going to do about repairing it.  I have reserved two truck-loads of new sod to be delivered in the next two weeks (one truck each week).  This will remedy the injured turf on the golf course.  We will give a little more patience to the practice range areas before committing to new sod.  The plan next week is to replace all the injured turf on the collars and tees before proceeding to other areas in need.  What doesn't get completed next week will be repaired the week after.  

SIDEBAR - I know some of you read "injured turf on the collars" and your heart sinks as that is an issue we battled quite extensively for several years.  I can tell you the amount of turf damage this year is far less than experienced in 2015 and I'm certain the impact to your golf activities will be as minimal as can be.

One other important piece of the ever mystifying winter injury puzzle is varietal differences.  If you're confused by what I'm referring to, I mean the different types of Bermudagrass present on the golf course can have different tolerances to winter extremes.  Wait, you mean you didn't know there are more than one type of Bermudagrass on the golf course.  Well, let me ask you a question, do you like tomatoes?  If yes, what's your favorite type?
You see, there are many different types of tomatoes and similarly there are many different types of Bermudagrass.  Our 100 plus acres is mostly comprised of Tifway Bermudagrass (A.K.A. 419) but there also areas of Tifgreen (A.K.A. 328), Celebration, and Common growing on the golf course along with genetic off-types mutated from the 419 planted ten years ago (Grandma's Quilt).  You may or may not have noticed certain irregular shaped patches greening up quicker than its neighbors earlier this spring.  Similarly, there is a newer Bermudagrass variety now on the market known as Latitude 36 CLICK HERE.  It was bred to possess a higher cold tolerance threshold than 419 or others and is available from our grass supplier.  We will be incorporating some in these injured areas to see how well it passes the test.  Fingers crossed the Latitude 36 could well be the key to reducing winter injury in our susceptible areas in the future.

That's all for now, time to get back on the course and continue to give our Bermudagrass the TLC it needs to get the course where we all want it.  If you have any questions, comments, or concerns please don't hesitate to email me directly.  I am always happy to help.

See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS, MG

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Rebooting Spring, To Do List, and Kevin Bacon!

Hello and welcome to The Greenkeeper!  Today is Wednesday, April 11th and Patrick Reed is the winner of the 2018 Masters.  Now some of you may recall Patrick successfully qualified for the 2012 Wells Fargo Championship right here at Carolina Golf Club, but before we discuss the degrees of separation between us and the green jacket winner, let's take a close look at some recently completed and ongoing course work as we continue to prepare for spring.

Speaking of spring, we are 41 days into meteorological and 21 days into astrological spring, yet it hasn't really felt much like spring to me.  You recall last post I shared photos from greens aeration where it snowed, and Monday morning while conversing with my superintendent peer from Charlotte Country Club, John Szklinski it began to sleet!  We were comparing notes (okay, lamenting) about the delayed bermudagrass green up we're both experiencing and Mother Nature was definitely having a good laugh at our expense.  The good news is the immediate forecast calls for a warm up to spring like conditions through this weekend. We may even see one or two days at or near 80 degrees.
Brad Panovich
The downside is there are reports indicating one more last blast of winter (or shall I say cooler than average temperatures) may be returning to our area on the back side of this week's warm up.  The chart below reflects the percent chance temperatures will be a departure from normal (average) over the next two weeks beginning back on April 8th and extending through April 24th.  You can see the warm up we are about to experience on the second row, but notice it is short lived as the blue and green hues associated with a cooling trend return to the southeast in rows three and four.  
WeatherBell Analytics
Something about the Madden-Julian Oscillation heading back into phases two and three.  I know, I lost you at Madden-Julian but you can CLICK HERE to learn a little more about the MJO and its impact on our weather in the continental U.S. if you choose.  In the meantime just know that yours truly is ready for the arrival of spring and my team and I are hoping it unpacks its bags and stays for good real soon.

Despite the cooler than average temperatures there has been a good deal of activity on the golf course. Mowing has begun as we've cut select fairways twice and select tees and approaches once each.  Rough is being mowed for the first time today and tomorrow.  Back on April 2nd all bermudagrass areas (tees, fairways, rough, etc.) were fertilized with our custom blend.
Custom Blend
Spreader Truck
This fertilizer is formulated based on soil tests and polymer coated to provide a slow, steady feed to our playing surfaces this spring and summer.  As the bermudagrass continues to wake, albeit slowly from its longer than usual hibernation period, this product will provide the plant with the nutrition necessary to develop into the strong turf and premium playing surface we desire for you and your guests.  

Other course related news saw over 30 tree stumps ground and removed back on April 2nd.  A small maple tree growing in the natural/native area left of No. 13 tee was relocated to the natural/native area near No. 14 tee and several lower limbs and branches were pruned from three trees growing left of No. 13 fairway in order to provide an unobstructed view of the bunkers guarding the left side of the fairway.
Phil Flowers Stump Grinding

Maplewood Company
New Home!

Much Improved

Needless to say it's been a little busy of late, and even crowded with all the specialized equipment on property.  And speaking of crowded, the City of Charlotte (Charlotte Storm Water) recently initiated a project on Donald Ross Road that required us to grant them temporary access to a small portion of the property.  Underneath Donald Ross Road is a culvert that discharges storm water into the stream channel below the teeing area of No. 13 and flows across No. 11.  The culvert and concrete headwall were both in a state of decline but CSW has been making quick work of the repairs and should be off site pretty soon.
Charlotte Storm Water on Site

New Boulders In Splash Pool
Repairs to Bottom of Culvert Pipe
So back to our 2018 Masters Champion, Patrick Reed.  You may or may not recall we hosted the qualifying tournament for the Wells Fargo Championship for five consecutive years (2010-2014).  During that time many veteran and aspiring professionals played the course in hopes of securing one of the four coveted spots in the Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow Club.  In 2012 a young Patrick Reed, with then girlfriend (now wife) Justine on the bag as caddie, fired a 5-under par round of 65 (the qualifying tournaments always played No. 13 from a forward tee making it a par 4 and the course par 70) securing a spot in PGA Tour field.  I recall he birdied 18 ensuring he was in the tournament and avoiding the crowded playoff that ensued when ten guys tied at 4-under played off for the final two spots.  That playoff took six holes and two days before everything was determined.  Sidenote: that year Patrick successfully qualified 6 times on the PGA Tour.

Anyway, as I watched the drama unfold this past Sunday evening I remembered our connection, albeit small to this year's Masters Champion.  I searched the results of that year's qualifying tournament and realized that 2014 Fed Ex Cup Champion Billy Horschel was also in that field and in that 10 for 2 playoff (unsuccessful).  I searched the results from the other years and was surprised to remember some of who had played at Carolina Golf Club and what they had gone on to achieve, like Gastonia's Harold Varner III (2016 Australian PGA Champion) finished T25 in 2013, current U.S. Open Champion Brooks Koepka no carded in 2014, and this week's defending champion at the RBC Heritage, Wesley Bryan finished 97th in 2014.  

Anyway, for those of you curious here's a look back at five years of Monday Qualifying at Carolina Golf Club. 
2010  2011  2012  2013  2014 

That's all for now, time to take advantage of these next few warm days and whip this golf course into shape.  With the Masters in the rear view, I know everyone is excited and raring to go.  I'll be back with another update next week with greater detail on some changes to our mowing patterns and hopefully a better idea of the overall state of our bermudagrass health and winter recovery.  Until then...

See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS, MG