More Stories
Irrigation Intake Screen Install

Last year, we began finding items such as plastic bags (and fish) in one of the pump station's intake wet well.  In the fall, we had a diver inspect the intake pipe screen. What he found during that inspection were some gaping holes in the original metal screen.

(image)The original screen wasn't keeping anything out.
This past Monday, we finally had the intake screen replaced on this station, which is located between #5 and 6.  While the serious work was taking place under the water, we had plenty to keep us occupied on the surface.   
(image)The new stainless steel screen is ready to be installed.
The first step was to remove the build up of silt around the intake pipe using a dredge pump. 
Again, there was a tremendous amount of setup required, including the placement of a "turbidity curtain" in the pond, to prevent cloudy water from getting back to the intake screen area, further hampering visibility. 
(image)The dredge pump is being setup.
The pump's discharge hose, deposited the sediment into a geotextile bag.  The bag initially wanted to slide towards the water, so we placed one wheel of a utility cart on the bag to hold it in place. 
(image)The bag filled up quickly, and it soon became clear that the cart was no match for this bag.

To get the screen in place, lift bags were attached, then it was carried out to a point where it could float.

(image)The screen is being floated out to the end of the intake pipe.
Given the hot temperatures, nobody was complaining about having to go for a dip.  An air hose was connected to a small compressor and the lift bags, giving the diver the ability to adjust the level of the screen as he set it in place, and attached it to the intake pipe.

It was a long, hot day, and after 8:00 p.m. when the install was completed.  However, if it lasts for another 25+ years, it was well worth it!
Can I use clipping yield to prevent disease this September?
Managing turfgrass disease with the goal of reducing or eliminating pesticide use takes a lot of planning, careful observations and fine tuning. While we are currently in the middle of the summer turf disease cycle, I am already planning ahead for the most difficult time of year that I face when managing turf disease, September.September has always been a challenging time of year for me as we
Creativity is a somewhat abstract concept that has immense value in both life and business.  It’s the ability to allow your intelligence to have fun. We are living in a fast paced world where when creativity and innovation are almost necessities. Creativity involves the ability to identify patterns, make connections, perceive situations in new ways …(image)
TurfNet Blog Aggregator email

Every Tuesday TurfNet sends an email called the TurfNet Turf Blog Aggregator where they compile the most interesting blog posts of that week from it's members. Mine has been on there a few times. Some of these blogs are extremely well done and I have learned a lot from them. At times I have added a link to a particular post that I thought was pertinent for us here at Mink. That is the case this week. As I scrolled down the email every post seemed to resonate with me. I am not sure if the link will work but here is this weeks Aggregator: LINK

Starting with Paul Carter, CGCS I truly believe the players have a bigger impact on conditions than the staff does. We can prep the course in the AM and have it look as if we were never there by 10:00. Jon Kiger has been my roommate on all the Bandon Dunes trips and does a great job organizing all the TurfNet members trips He has a special affinity for all things Irish even hosting a Celtic radio show in Atlanta.

I cannot tell you how many times I have felt silly watering in a product when rain is predicted or is actually falling. Brad Novotny does a great job explaining why we do what we have to sometimes. I mean the forecasts are never wrong right? Dave Schlagetter has been a contributor to the forum on TurfNet for years and has some great insights. "Robot" mowers are making some in-roads into golf and it is exciting and very daunting. What can I say about Bug Spray Disease? Fred Gehrisch, CGCS sums it up perfectly. I think most of us suffer from this affliction.

Even though we do not have ponds on the course we do have ponds and water bodies in Mink Meadows. Brian Stiehler, CGCS MG covers the issues of treating ponds for aquatic weeds. John Slade is a fixture on the Aggregator because he is simply damn good at it. Tremendous coverage of some of his summer staff and a reminder that few people here at Mink need. The members here are very good about complimenting the staff and  appreciating the hard work they do every day.

Finally Jorge Croda, CGCS covers a topic I too believe in and participate in every day. The day you stop learning is the day they plant you in the ground. The final "Thoughts from a foolish golf course superintendent" is fairly new to the Aggregator but after seeing one a few weeks ago I decided to follow this and receive them every day. Many are quite good and very profound. One I loved and forwarded to a friend was this one:

I have thought about doing this format many times since the topics most superintendents write about and deal with are universal. I feel as though I would be reinventing the wheel so why not share a well written post. This week seemed to just strike a chord where every post was relevant. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.
USGA Regional Update

Dark And StormyJULY 7, 2017By Jim Skorulski, agronomist, Northeast Region

Ominous storm clouds signal an oncoming front and the potential for dangerous lightning.
Wet and soggy conditions have been common across most of the Northeast Region this season. Wet weather has saturated many golf courses and flooded others, disrupting maintenance and course-conditioning efforts. Fortunately, the wet weather has not severely affected turf conditions because temperatures have mostly remained moderate. However, continued wet weather combined with warming soil temperatures will reduce turfgrass rooting and could prove fatal. Turf managers are taking advantage of any dry weather to catch up on spraying and topdressing practices that have been disrupted by the rain. Hopefully the weather will also allow an opportunity to vent putting greens. Venting will help soils dry and re-establish gas exchange in the root zone. The USGA webcast, “Venting Aeration – A Benefit to Putting Greens,” further illustrates this popular cultivation technique.
Stormy weather patterns also bring concerns about lightning and the dangers it presents for workers and golfers. A properly functioning lightning detection system is the best defense against lightning. Lightning detection systems provide advance warning of incoming storms and let facilities know when conditions are safe to resume outside activities. However, not all golf facilities have lightning detection systems and there may be times when workers and golfers have to determine for themselves when it is time to seek shelter. Here are a few tips that workers and golfers can use when severe weather approaches:
1. The time between a lightning flash and thunder can be used to determine how far away the lightning strike occurred. Sound travels at a speed of about 1,125 feet per second (343 meters per second), equating to about a five-second count per mile (three seconds per kilometer) from the time of a lightning flash until the clap of thunder is heard. A count of 10 seconds between a flash of lightning and the clap of thunder means the lightning strike was approximately 2 miles away. Many were taught to count one second for each mile between a lightning flash and thunder, which greatly overestimates how far away the lightning strike occurred.
2. The “30/30 rule” is used by many to determine when it is time to head for shelter. The rule says that lightning poses a threat if it takes less than 30 seconds to hear thunder after a lightning flash and people should wait 30 minutes after a storm passes before resuming outdoor activities. The problem with the 30/30 rule is that the numbers are arbitrary. Using this method does not help to determine if a storm has sufficiently passed or if another storm is approaching. The best approach is to take cover as a lighting storm approaches and remain there until you are sure the storm has passed or until an all-clear signal is provided.
3. Lightning will often strike a tall object, but not always. Taking cover near smaller trees or objects hoping the lightning will strike a taller object may get you in trouble. Lightning can strike the ground or smaller trees, endangering anyone close to those areas. The only safe place to take cover from a storm is indoors or inside a closed vehicle.
4. Lightning never strikes twice is an old myth. Lightning can indeed strike the same spot multiple times if conditions are right.
July is also the time for field day demonstrations at Rutgers University and the University of Massachusetts. Field days provide an opportunity to see research in progress, to observe the newest grasses and to view the effectiveness of various control agents. Field days also provide an opportunity to interact with colleagues, which seems to be more and more difficult to do with everyone’s busy schedules. It is never easy to leave your golf course during midsummer, but try to attend one of the university field day events even if just for a few hours in the morning to support the university and gain valuable information that will make you a better manager. We hope to see you there.
New Face on an Old Adversary

Recently at Kinloch Golf Club we have adapted a new style of maintaining bunkers, often referred to as the ‘Aussie method’. Our goal is to address and eliminate the occurrence of a ‘fried egg’ when a player’s ball lands on a bunkers edge and sinks into the sand, leaving them with a bad lie.
This new method involves using a squeegee/roller to roll the bunker edges smooth, compacting the sand and over time creating a hard layer to allow the ball to roll off the face easily. Kinloch staff first hand-water the bunker faces, then using their roller, gently smooth the edges of the face until a uniform look is achieved. Once the edges are completed, the staff member rake's the center of the bunker to smooth out any foot traffic.

An added bonus, the bunkers smooth face helps funnel rainfall down to the center, reducing the effect of sand wash-outs and moderately reducing the labor required to repair bunkers after heavy rainfall.

Summer in the Ohio Valley

The heat and humidity is starting to ramp up in the Ohio Valley, this is the time of the year the Zoysia grass and Bryan's plantings truly start to shine. With that said, the cool season grasses begin to show stress from the elements. Over the next two months, we get an opportunity to showcase how our Turfgrass Managment strategies and programs correlate with consistent playing condtions.

(image)Signs of Summer Patch in the Rough

The rough has been a topic of discussion as of late, it continues to be a challenge with a dense healthy Turfgrass stand. Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately; the rough will begin to thin out. The primary rough at Hyde Park has high populations of Annual Bluegrass, an unwanted Turfgrass plant that is very susceptible to many plant fungi and struggles to withstand the stresses of summer. Long-term; the grasses in the rough need to be converted to Turf Type Tall Fescue, this will take patience and persistence, requiring more inputs initially but is more sustainable over the long-term. This season we have tried to prolong the life the of the Annual Bluegrass in the rough with increased inputs of fungicides and fertilizer until a long-term strategy is presented to the Grounds Committee.

(image)Fungicide Applications in the Rough

Over the summer months we have many tools and strategies to reduce stress on the Turfgrass grass plant.

Fans! Yes, fans help tremendously with circulating air and reducing the canopy temperatures, this year we added a permanent electric fan on the 14th green along with a portable gas unit that will rotate around the course. Much of the time the gas unit will rotate between Holes 5, 6 and 7 until the electric service is run to these green sites. Please do not turn off the fans, they are valuable tools that will help with the extreme weather conditions.

(image)Portable Gas Fan


(image)Equipment Mgr. Bob Giving his Seal of Approval(image)Venting - small holes allow for oxygen exchange

Another excellent tool to help sustain Turfgrass health is the use of the aerifier to produce small 1/4" holes to allow for gas exchange in the rootzone. For many Turfgrass Managers this practice is fondly known as "Venting". These small holes are created on a monthly basis and are not an issue to playability.

A couple dates to note:

July 17th Fairway Aerifcation

September 11th Putting Green Aerifcation

As always we appreciate you're questions and feedback concerning all things related to the Grounds at HP!


Pat O'Brien

Grounds Superintendent


(image)Posted with Blogsy
Imagination is the key to innovation. Our world is fast paced and constantly changing. Yesterday’s knowledge alone is not enough for continued success. Imagination is essential for anyone, especially for leaders, who not only have to lead people into the future but have to foresee the challenges not yet known.  Some may hear the word imagination …(image)
A Prime Time Summer Evening at TCGCC

We really knocked it out of the park last night during Friday night's couples Wine Dine and Nine with kids night out.  The conditions were perfect for using the drone to capture all of the fun.

(image)Pre shotgun start.
(image)The view north with Boardman Lake and West Bay.
(image)Next time we need a slip and slide that can go all the way down the walking path on 1.
(image)Looking south
(image)Maui Jim and Ecco Shoes were on hand with their tents.
(image)We had about 30 kids for KNO with the bounce house, baseball and other fun toys to use on the 1st tee.
(image)Then it was time to run in the sprinklers!    (image)We had three tents set up for wine sampling and appetizers out on the golf course.

Seeking Innovation & Inspiration
Inspiration and innovation can come from many places.  As a professional, understanding the value of continuing education, in all aspects of one’s career, is critical. For myself, as a certified golf course superintendent, I find inspiration and innovation through my goals of being a life-long learner and advocate for all aspects of the game of …(image)
Flowers of Hyde Park Golf & Country Club, Part 3

This week's collection of flowers doesn't focus on a certain type of flower, but rather a group of flowers that require little to almost no maintaince and very little water. Some are all foliage with no showy flowers, one with a globe like flower, and another that is very tropical looking. Enjoy!

(image)Caladium 'Red Flash' great container and combination plant. Can be a little vigorous but provides for a fuller look(image)Caladium 'White Queen' great container and combination plant. Can be a little vigorous but provides for a fuller look(image)Gomphrena 'Fireworks'(image)Gomphrena 'Fireworks' good for mass plantings, back of border(image)Angelonia 'Angelmist Spreading White'(image)Perilla 'Magilla' Beefsteak Plant, quite vigorous, excellent foliage and good in masses(image)Mandevilla, very tropical looking. Climbs great if you provide it a trellis or something to climb on


The warm, humid days ahead will only help these flowers fill out the beds even more with the proper care. Have a great day!

Bryan Miller, OCNT



(image)Posted with Blogsy
I hope everyone has a chance to relax and enjoy the day.   The weather is perfect for a nice round of golf.
(image)Happy fourth everyone!!!(image)last weeks ladies guest day went very well.   Everyone had a great time.

(image)Mr. Paul Jacobs is the North East Agronomist For the USGA .  Paul conducted a site visit last week to share his experience and expertise with me.  We looked at all aspects of the operation from the Maintenance Facility, Staff Size, Budgets as well as Greens, Tees, and Fairways.   Of special concern is our practice putting green.   It continues to struggle.  The main concerns are traffic and morning shade.  We can't do anything about the shade and traffic will always be a concern on any practice green.   We have eliminated two holes and will concentrate the four remaining ones in the sunnier half of the green.  Depending on weather and turf health we may section off  areas.  We may even close the green during hot and humid weather.   We are doing everything we can to get the green to mimic our regular greens.  Unfortunately Paul had no silver bullet to get the green in prime condition but it was nice to hear and confirm that we are doing everything we can to keep the green in as good a condition as possible.
(image)You may have noticed some of our blue tops on our marking stakes have been damaged.  This is (as far as I can tell) from the coyote chewing on them.   I'm all out of new blue ones but have some green ones that I can use.   Hopefully this is a temporary thing and the coyotes find something else to chew on.   (image)In closing,  another example of  how our irrigation system is paying dividends.   Here we are watering in a fertilizer application.   The quickness and good coverage means better results.  
TurfNet "Tips and Tricks" Video
My latest video work for features Brian Boll, Superintendent at North Oaks Golf Club in North Oaks, Minnesota. Brian did a 9-month internship for me when I was at CCRockies. He was an exceptional intern. It was a pleasure to visit with him recently and film this TurfNet "Tips and Tricks" video about his "Murphy Pump". This is a brilliant idea for all golf course management facilities to have on hand (and hope to never use)! 

To view click HERE

Solheim Cup 2017
Recently, I had the opportunity to visit with my good friend, Rick Tegtmeier from Des Moines Golf and Country Club, host of the 2017 Solheim Cup. I had a chance to see some of Rick's renovation work and observe the turf conditions at DGCC. Hats off to this great superintendent and his staff, this facility looks amazing. The Solheim competitors will love this golf course. I was especially impressed with the Penn A-4 green surfaces. I have observed many Penn A-4 greens throughout the country and these maybe the finest I have ever seen. They have the look of my old A-4 greens at CCRockies. Turf that is extremely dense with very diminutive plants of extremely fine texture. Absolutely fantastic.

I will be headed back to Des Moines for the Solheim Cup in mid-August to do video work and to volunteer preparing the golf course for the championship. I must say, I'm really looking forward to this opportunity. I will be posting regularly during the tournament, so stay tuned!

Be careful when driving your cart on a fairway.
Golf carts these days are faster and designed to turn sharper than the old ones. Please remember as you are looking for the sprinkler with the yardage to the green, do not turn the cart too sharp. This donut " as they say in the business" will be with us for a couple of weeks. With the temperatures in the 90's everyday this week the grass will have problems recovering from this kind of damage.
Using Empathy to Build Relationships
Empathy is the ability to identify with or understand another’s situation or feelings.  You haven’t walked in their shoes but you have the ability to understand what someone else is feeling or going through and how this affects their reaction to certain situations.  This requires making an imaginative leap, recognizing that other people have different …(image)
Brothers in Turf

Finding reliable summer help is often a challenge for us--the hours are crazy and the work is hard.  That is why we are very grateful for having a solid group of young men this year.  One unique thing about our 2017 team is that we have three brothers working together.

Entering his third season at Laurel Creek, is oldest brother, Joe.  He is a graduate of Ursinus College and now working as a teacher in the Moorestown school district.  Joe was a stand out performer for us two years ago, when he relentlessly pushed a blower during our August aerification.

Youngest brother, Mike, has returned for a second season.  He has completed his freshman year at Virginia Tech. and will be majoring in Engineering.  Like his brothers, Mike is a strong, consistent man on the team.

Middle sibling, Luke, is here for his first season, but has picked things up very quickly, and does an excellent job with the bunkers.  Luke is an Environmental Sciences major at Rutgers, and will be receiving internship credit for his experience on the golf course this summer.

Given their varied professional interests, you might wonder if these siblings share any common interests?  Rumor has it, there is at least one thing they have all enjoyed during college:  Rugby!

Whether it is Luke banging out bunkers, Mike laying down some razor-like lines on greens, or Joe terrifically triplexing tees, these guys are a real asset to the Laurel Creek team.

If you happen to see them (or any of the staff members) on the course, please feel free to give them a thumbs-up if you appreciate their efforts.  Honestly, that quick, simple gesture can make someone's day during these dog days of summer!
Bug Spray Disease

  We are in the busiest part of our season and several of our greens in addition to the croquet lawn have come down with a bad case of "Bug Spray Disease".  Once this disease occurs there is very little we can do to help the turf, it may live or it may die but only time will tell.  There is no cure other than prevention!

(image)"Bug Spray Disease" is easily identified by the footprints. 
(image)A large "diseased" area on the croquet lawn.
  All kidding aside, "Bug Spray Disease" is caused when you apply bug repellents and sunscreen to your legs when standing on turf.  It is especially damaging on low mowed turf such as the greens and the croquet lawn.  The alcohol and propellants in the sprays in addition to products containing DEET, are very damaging to the turf and injury is caused immediately.  Depending on the conditions and the amount of over spray, the turf may recover in 1-4 weeks.  In extreme cases though, the turf will die and the area will have to be seeded or sodded.

(image)The DEET in many bug sprays is known to cause damage to turf.(image)The 19th green.
(image)Close-up of the croquet lawn.

  Please be aware that bug sprays and sunscreen sprays are very damaging to the turf.  The simple solution to this "disease" is prevention and to spray these products in the parking lot, on the cart path, or any other non-turf surface where the over spray will not contact the grass.  Please help us care for your course and tell a friend about the dreaded "Bug Spray Disease".
Pot of Gold?

Maybe not a pot of gold at the end of this rainbow, but it is Highlands Falls!  Despite a lot of rain, we were fortunate to finish a Highlands Falls July 4th tradition, the painting of the American Flag!  And with a small break in the weather, this wonderful rainbow appeared.  Have a great July 4th!

(image)Nothing says summer like July 4th at HFCC!
No Cause For Alarm!
Hello and welcome to "The Greenkeeper"!  Today is Friday, June 30th, where does the time go.  When we were last together I was introducing a new assistant, new intern, and we had just wrapped up our annual small tine pre-summer aeration on putting greens.  Since that time it rained nearly 6.5 inches, including one stretch last week where we received rainfall seven consecutive days (more on that later).  We even endured a severe flash flood event the evening prior to our Friday Guest Day back on the 16th.  Somehow despite all the wet weather, we managed to spread 300 tons of sand on our tees, fairways, and approaches and install 10,000 square feet of new sod.  Let's take a look.

After experimenting with topdressing fairways in the summer of 2014 CLICK HERE utilizing all the old bunker sand that was replaced the previous winter, we committed fully to topdressing fairways on a regular basis going forward.  New equipment was acquired in 2015 to assist with this intensive cultural practice and since that time we've now applied approximately 60 tons of sand to every acre of bermudagrass growing on our tees and fairways.  I mentioned earlier about all the rain we've been receiving but we managed to complete what is the first of three applications scheduled for this season just before the heavy stuff helped wash it in. 
(image)Assistant Matt Claunch Slinging Sand(image)10 Tons Per Acre 

Our next application is scheduled for the first full week of August and our final will coincide with September greens aeration.

Recently the Greens Committee decided to convert a small portion of the natural/native area behind No. 13 green to bermudagrass.  This was completed early last week when we installed several pallets of sod to the right of No. 13 green down below the Championship tee of No. 18.  This change was made primarily for pace of play, but it also will permit us in the near future to create a closely mowed area around the green that ties directly into the neighboring teeing ground similar to those found on other portions of the course.
(image)New Sod Right of 13 Green
Since this conversion only required a small amount of turf, we took advantage to obtain a full load and make repairs to random areas throughout the property.  Whether it be an area severely shaded underneath trees or just worn out alongside the cart path edges, the team worked hard to improve the overall condition of the course.
Last of new sod going down today. Instructing Intern Zac on importance of #greensideup but not much green. 🤔 What you think @Greensideup17?
— Matthew Wharton (@CGCGreenkeeper) June 22, 2017
Other projects in the works is the mowing of our warm-season native areas.  This removal of old growth helps to remove weeds and other unwanted vegetation and make room for this coming season's new growth.  A couple of passes with the old bush hog and then a quick collection and removal of the debris and we are all set.
Promoting fresh growth of the native grass areas
— Matt Claunch (@MCClaunch) June 28, 2017

Earlier I referenced the amount of rain this month.  Can you believe we've had more rain in June 2017 than we received all of June through August in either 2015 or 2016?  That's right, the past two summers have been very dry with little rainfall, but this year has been anything but with over 20 inches rain falling on Carolina Golf Club since April 1st!  The lush conditions everyone has recently been talking about is the direct result of abundant rainfall since the bermudagrass began to grow.  I even had one member tell me he knows I prefer to be in control of the water but the course never looked this good when I was in control.  What can I say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  

There's an old saying about having too much of a good thing and it's true in the world of turfgrass, especially when it comes to water.  The abundant rainfall that has brought deep, lush conditions to our tees and fairways has given me slight pause for concern when it comes to our putting surfaces.  Our roots are not as deep at this time as past years.  Why?  It's quite simple really, if you were a turfgrass root would you make the effort to dive deep searching for moisture when it's always supplied in abundance every time you turn around.  Wet springs make it challenging to grow deep root systems and this has been one of the wettest springs I can remember.  Our rainfall total in April was 6.69 inches, May was 7.07 inches, and with a few hours remaining in June our total is currently 6.38 inches.

Now, the good news is despite a lack of depth to our root systems we have more root mass and density than ever before.  One of our new products we've been using since last summer is a vermicompost extract and it's been university tested and proven to increase root mass.  The photos below definitely show an abundance of vibrant roots.

It will be interesting to see how everything plays out over the remaining months of summer with this significant extra volume of roots.  Frankly, I'm not overly concerned about the depth being slightly more shallow compared to years past simply because we have so many more viable, healthy roots than ever before.  

So back to last week's rain.  For seven consecutive days we endured cloudy skies, very humid conditions, and measurable rainfall.  The weather pattern broke at the beginning of this week and we've all enjoyed Chamber of Commerce type weather with lower dew points (low humidity) and comfortable temperatures.  It's important to keep in mind turfgrass is a living, breathing thing and as such its vitality is affected by a myriad of factors including but not limited to wind, sun, rain, drought, heat, cold, and more.  As a result it is not uncommon for bentgrass to react negatively when exposed to such rapid changes in climate like we just experienced.  We encountered some higher than normal wilt pressure brought about by the extreme low dew points and as a result some turf lost its color turning brown.  

The plant is still alive and new leaf blades are being generated by the crown.  Putting quality is not impacted as the discolored turf areas provide the same smooth ball roll, it just looks different. Although wilt has happened before, many times, I understand some of you may be alarmed but I assure you all is well.  Besides, the USGA has been telling us for years that brown is the new green.   ;)

See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS, MG

Today will be the beginning of a very stressful 4 day stretch at Victoria National.  We will make a daily decision on what is best for the players, staff and golf course in regards to cart traffic.  

With minimal rainfall and our average high temperature well above 90°, our team has worked diligently to maintain championship caliber conditions for our members and guests.  During prolong heat and drought stress the plant declines in turf quality that is associated with root growth, photosynthesis, carbohydrate accumulations (Salts), and turgidity of the plant. The next 30 days will be crucial for the agronomy department in maintaining turf health.  By minimize this stress at the right time can ensure healthy turf for the remainder of the season, we may have to make the decision  of keeping carts on paths between the hours of 1:00p.m.-5:00p.m. or simply keep carts ON paths for the entire day.  To combat this stress, the Agronomy Dept. does our part as well by mowing everything that we can before 10a.m. and focuses on hand-watering the next 6-8 hours of the day.  We also ask our staff to leave their carts under a tree where applicable and pull the 100’ hose up and down the  entire fairway to minimize addition traffic on the course.  This hose when full of water weighs approx.. 100 lbs.    Cart traffic is always our last option.   Wear damage caused by vehicles can be influenced by the speed of travel, the amount of stopping, starting, turning, and the amount of moisture in the soil.  Wear symptoms include leaf tissue matting and a subsequent exposure of underlying thatch. With additional traffic, leaf blades become bruised.  The ruptured cells eventually give turf a dark, water-soaked appearance. Wilt sets in as water is lost from the leaves, eventually causing a loss of chlorophyll and cell death.  This is accentuated when we have minimal areas for carts to enter and exit the fairways combined with the lack of moisture.  In Lehman’s terms:  It’s asking someone who is in the middle of running a marathon to run sprints with no water. 

 By minimizing the cart traffic in the afternoon or the entire day we will be benefiting the turf by not adding additional stress.   Simply scattering cart traffic throughout the season will also reduce the amount of stress put on the turf. Please continue to fill divots on tees/ fairway and remove pelts as they will not grow back during the summer.   If you have any questions regarding this decision please feel free to call me directly, my cellphone 317-654-4913

Not a good day.  Trouble right from the start.  First, two staff members were out.   Then while heading up to spray the practice green the spray tank sprung a oil leak and its not an easy fix.   The gasket went and you need to basically split the machine in half to fix it.  Tank has to be removed, etc, etc,.....   About a two day job for Moe our mechanic with out interruptions and that never happens.   We had two hydraulic leaks on our fairway mowers.  One in the piston that steers the mower and the other in a hydraulic hose.   The guys did a good job seeing them before they got to big.  

I guess to keep this blog "real" you have to post the good with the bad.  It could have been worse.  The oil leak could have happened on the putting green.  That would not have been good!!!!

(image)Funny what you look at as a superintendent.  We all look to the roads for signs of problems.  Here is the trail of oil left by our spray tank leaving the shop.
(image)Down for the count.  Need to remove the spray tank and split engine from gear case.  (image)Hydraulic leak on fairway.  It will turn brown and die but luckily its very narrow and should grow out in a couple of weeks.   this happened on two machines today.  The guys did a good job catching them before they got bigger.  (image)Might as well end on a positive note:   The pond is pretty full for this time of year.  No worries about running out of water.  
Golfers Determine Course Conditions
If you follow our Twitter feed (@BearTraceHB) you may enjoy the daily information about course rules and conditions, reminders and updates about upcoming tournaments and cultural practices, and sometimes you may have to deal with a "friendly reminder" or rant from me about improper care from golfers of the course.  These are not meant to be rude or disrespectful, just meant to remind you that you, the golfer, have a greater impact on the conditioning of your golf course than the golf course maintenance staff does.  If you want your golf course to be a championship caliber golf course then you have to treat it like a championship caliber golf course.

Golfers may think the course rules for the day, such as where carts can travel or if they are allowed off the paths, are done to punish them or impede on their round but this is far from the truth. Course rules are made to protect the golf course and sometimes the golfer.  Carts are sometimes restricted from some areas to ensure the course is protected from damage so that it is in good shape for all, not only today but in the future as well.  As one great golf course superintendent once commented "If everyone drove in the good grass, there would always be good grass."  This is absolutely accurate.  If carts will scatter and not play "follow the leader" there will be less stress on the turf and in turn better turf for everyone to play on.

Golfers respecting and taking care of the golf course extends from the tee box where they can place their broken tees in collection bins or fill sand divots (if these amenities are available) to the fairways where divots can be replaced or filled with sand, to the bunkers where they should be raked following play, to the greens where ball marks should be PROPERLY repaired.  All these little things add up to keeping the golf course in top condition and take just a little bit of effort from each golfer.

Taking care of the golf course also extends to the practice areas.  Proper care of the practice areas, such as using the divot pattern to the right, will allow these 25 divots to recover much quicker than the other 25 divots.  Practice green etiquette is also a big contributor to golf course condition for everyone.  Practicing putting is a vital part of honing ones game but please do not stand in one place for an extended amount of time as this will weaken the turf and could eventually kill it.

Each golf course maintenance department only has a certain amount of money to spend on labor, equipment, or products. Every action the golfer takes, either harmful or beneficial, greatly impacts the conditioning of the course.  Please remember this the next time you play and think about where you drive, how you leave the bunker after you play out of it, or whether or not you properly repair your ball mark on the green and how these will affect the course.  I'll make you this promise.  Our Agronomy Staff will be at the course every day working hard to make the golf course the best it can be but we will be able to accomplish so much more with your help.  Please help us out and help to make our course all that it can be.
Bermuda Eradication Part Deux Hundred

First early morning arrival to the course in a while. Don't miss getting up at 4:30 but do miss the course waking up. Shot a little Bermuda Eradication video and yes we will be killing some Bermuda after the Invitational. I have not sprayed this year due to some weakness in the Zoysia.
 Fairways overall continue to improve with some filling in needed on 1,2 and 4. Tees were aerated last week, fairways were spiked which is the reason for the little slices with the brown edges where they dried out. Most of those areas have recovered. Yes and I have the finger ready for the video!

Back to Bunker Basics

As a reminder, when coming in and out of bunkers, they should be entered and exited only from the low side.  For example, on the bunker in front of #2 green, the bunker should be accessed from the side closer to the tee, not the green side.

We have been instructing the maintenance staff to place rakes on the low side, however it seems that every morning, a few rakes have magically migrated back to the high side.
(image)This rake is now between the green and bunker--not where golfers should be entering or exiting.
While the picture below doesn't do justice to the severity of the slope, at 33 degrees, this is a steep face.  Repeatedly entering and exiting the bunker on this slope will obviously move sand, eventually destroy the sod lip, and is potentially dangerous to the player.

Of course, seeing unraked footprints on a bunker face is like adding insult to injury.  We have spent an enormous amount of time and effort this year to improve the condition of the bunkers.  Your help in properly maintaining them is appreciated!
Flowers of Hyde Park Golf & Country Club, Part 2

Continuing on the photo tour of the summer annuals, we'll visit a few sun loving plants. These plants thrive in sunny conditions, 6+ hours of direct sunlight.

(image)Portulaca, great as a ground cover or container plant(image)Potulaca(image)Ruellia, Mexican Petunias. Petunia like flowers but growing almost like a small shrub. Great in masses(image)Zinnia. A good choice for containers or borders(image)Geraniums. Excellent color on their own or mix different colors in(image)SunImpatiens, Sweet Potato Vine, and Thai Plant. Everything you need in a container. Thriller, filler, spiller


We'll pick up next week with some more summertime annuals. Have a great holiday. Happy 4th of July!


Bryan Miller, OCNT



(image)Posted with Blogsy
More posts are loading...