Wednesday, June 30, 2021

June Recap!

Hello and welcome to The Greenkeeper!  Today is Wednesday, June 30th and I'm barely sneaking this recap in before the month ends!  We have much to cover since we last convened in this space so let's get to it.

June arrived on the heels of the driest spring (March, April, and May combined) in fifteen years!  The course had only received 7.72 inches rain over those three months with the majority (4.22") falling in March.  The cool, dry weather in April and May led to some very firm playing conditions enjoyed by most.

You may recall last time I mentioned how the cool, dry start to the golf season had the Bermudagrass lagging behind.  Well, June brought with it some warm, humid temperatures as to be expected, and nearly three inches of rainfall on the evenings of the 6th and 7th.  And just like that the irrigation reservoir was full again and the golf course greened up overnight!  After spending two months playing like a supermodel but not quite looking like one, the golf course began to look as good as she played!

No. 5

No. 7

As the month continued we did get a little more rain bringing our total for the month up to 4.55 inches which brings us to 22.22 inches for the year, which is about average.  Considering we have run close to twenty inches above average the past three years, it's good to see a little brown scattered about the fairways again.  It means the course is firm and you should be enjoying some extra roll on your drives!

In other news, we added new bunker sand to all greenside bunkers this month.  There are 81 bunkers on property, 79 on holes 1-18 and two practice bunkers.  We added sand to the large practice bunker nearest the Chipping Green and the 38 bunkers located nearest the putting surfaces.  At this point I've asked members of the Committee to listen for your feedback before we make any future decisions about adding more sand.

Here's a tweet showing how we installed the bunker sand utilizing our topdresser for a smooth and even application!

As we made our way thru the month of June we made height of cut adjustments to the fairways (a little more cushion under the ball) and rough (a little more rough to snag your ball).  We vented greens with a combination of needle and Samurai tines on a couple of occasions along with some wetting agent and light topdressing to aid with the stresses of summer.

Samurai Tines

Material Easily Removed

Like it Never Even Happened

We have continued to roll with an increased frequency resulting in smoother greens with faster speeds.  This week we slightly raised our height of cut to combat the heat stress of the past three days but with a favorable forecast for the upcoming holiday we will lower accordingly.

The next big thing on the horizon is aerification week starting next Tuesday, July 6!  I'm sure by now you've seen the club email reminding everyone of the schedule.  While the course is closed we will perform a deep verticut on all fairways, remove material, topdress with 450 tons of sand, and solid tine aerify.  Tees will be core aerified and topdressed.  We will hold off on aerification and topdressing of the practice facilities until Monday, July 12.

You may recall we first performed these cultural practices the first week of June two years ago. Click Here  And last year, we bypassed the solid tine fairway aerification in order to minimize the course closure as a result of the pandemic. Click Here

The biggest difference this year from the previous two is the decision to resume a fall putting green aerification which means we will not be aerifying the greens next week.  We will likely apply a light topdressing and wetting agent but mostly the greens will be getting a breather for a few days while we focus our attention on the labor intensive cultural practices to make our tees and fairways better.

That's all for now, we're mowing the warm-season native areas (broomsedge) this week while the cool-season fine fescue areas are in peak form.  So get out and enjoy your golf course, we've had several admirers of late. ;)


Big Snapper!

I love nature!

See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS, MG