Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Summer Work Has Begun

As you all have noticed, we have begun the first phase of our aerification and verticutting processes around the course. Although they are disruptive to the quality of our playing surfaces, it is important to realize that these cultural practices are essential to the health and sustainability of our grasses. Aerification is a process that relieves the compaction from the traffic of our busy season and helps eliminate the thatch layer that has built up over the fall and winter months. Verticutting also removes thatch build up and promotes new growth that results in a smoother, more consistent playing surface. On the greens, we follow up with a layer of topdressing sand to fill the aerification holes with fresh sand. We then apply fertilizer to stimulate quick recovery and new plant growth. Our overall process on the greens this year was different than years past. After monitoring the greens following aerification, our next aerification will be fine tuned for quicker recovery. We will repeat these processes throughout the summer to establish a strong foundation for the busy season, and information on the dates when we will be doing this work will be made available through the pro shop.

The driving range tees are in the process of recovering from the spring transition. The reason we saw struggling surfaces was partly because of overseed transition and partly because of heavy damage from divots. Ideally, new grasses require about a year of growth and development before they are strong enough to grow with the competition of the winter grasses. However, due to the fact that the practice areas take on significantly more divots than fairways, we needed to insure that we had a full stand of turf in these areas. Now that all the overseed has died out, we have increased our fertilizer applications to the practice areas and are beginning to see strong recovery.
The verti-cut lines on fairways are nearly healed from the first verti-cut.

Aerification holes on greens are fully sealed and ready for round 2.

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