Friday, July 31, 2020


Hello and welcome to The Greenkeeper!  Today is Friday, July 31st and we finally got some, albeit mild relief from the heat yesterday!  Everyone knows July is our hottest month annually and this year was no exception, but did you realize our streak of 20 consecutive days with temperatures 90 degrees or above is the fifth longest streak in Charlotte history!  I don't know about you, but when you look at the top 5 pictured below I'm actually surprised the numbers aren't higher.  The streak officially ended yesterday at 20 days when we only reached 89 degrees thanks to early cloud cover.

Courtesy of Brad Panovich, WCNC

And for those of you who've been members since before the restoration you might remember that 2007 streak.  It essentially encompassed the entire month of August including consecutive days when the temperature reached 104 degrees!  Back then the course didn't have full irrigation coverage and we were struggling in those areas thinking how were we going to hang on through October.  The course closed on November first that year to start the eleven month makeover resulting in the course we enjoy today.

We did manage to squeeze out 3.56 inches of rainfall this month, but when close to two of those inches came in one storm late on the 21st you realize it's been mostly dry to go along with the hot and humid conditions.  We only received 1.65 inches all of June so we've experienced more near misses than hits from storms in the region.  But despite these weather related challenges you keep telling me the course is in great shape.  Thank you, the team has worked hard to overcome several obstacles this month and they appreciate the positive feedback.
I know when I posted the tweet above over a couple of weeks ago everyone got excited about the SubAir!  Since then we encountered numerous issues from having to replace and upgrade our electrical service to our technical rep in self quarantine.  But the good news is we are installed, and have power.  The not good news is we are waiting on the arrival of a coupling needed to complete the final hookup and make us operational.  Looks like Monday will be the big day as 2020 continues to frustrate, but we're almost there!  Here are a couple of pics of the work:
Connection to Drainage

Some other projects we completed this month include new landscaping at the newly renovated pool and we changed the grass on No. 13 Black tee from Celebration bemudagrass to Zorro zoysiagrass.  Despite Celebration having a higher shade tolerance over other bermudagrasses, zoysiagrass has even greater shade tolerance so hopefully we just eliminated our persistent bare patch at this tee which really pushes against the property boundary.

New Zoysia "Lawn"
Fresh Mulch & Stone
Out With the Old
In With the New

Anyway, that about sums up the month.  As August approaches we'll be venting greens this coming Monday and making a plant protectant application for summer stress.  We will also be stockpiling sand next week as the Sandman returns to topdress tees and fairways beginning August 10th.  As we turn another calendar page this year I'm excited for August because it means an end to the Dog Days and the noticeably shorter days in the second half of the month normally means a return of cooler nighttime temperatures.  The greens will definitely be happier with some overnight recovery.

Until then, stay cool and I'll...

See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS, MG