Greenkeepers Report November 2019
Greenkeepers Report November 2019
Who would be a greenkeeper? In the summer of 2018 we had a drought, which burnt all the grass up and created huge cracks in the fairways, roll on to this winter and it simply has not stopped raining, causing local flooding (the local boathouse in Lower Lode Lane was flooded for the first time in 4 years!) and a very wet golf course. Between August and December 2018; we had 276mm or 11” of rain. So far from August until now we have had 393 or 15 ½” of rain. That’s 4½“ more rain or an increase of over 40% and we still have 5 weeks to go!!!
There are obviously wet areas around the course, some of which I have had no choice but to rope off, I don’t normally like doing this as I prefer to spread the wear and traffic around, and often golfers will walk alongside a roped pathway creating another narrow worn and muddy area. If you do come across an area which is soft or waterlogged, please make every effort to walk around it.
Since the weekend we have had a Carry Only policy. This, as you can guess this is to try and stop any muddy areas from either forming or getting larger. Protecting these areas will help the course recovery during the spring and benefit the summer months. I do not like introducing restrictions so I can assure you that as soon as it becomes dry enough this will be lifted, but please come prepared to carry your clubs as frosts are now forecast as well, if its not one thing it another!
Between Monday 11th and Wednesday 13th November we manage to get around both courses with the blower, tractor with leaf collector, plus two people using backpack blowers and the courses were looking really clean of leaves, since then the wind and rain has meant more leaves have come down and its too wet for us to get out with the big machinery. As soon as we have a period of drying weather and we think we can get back out, we get more rain. It does mean that the majority of leaves have now fallen, so hopefully when we do get a window of opportunity we can get around the course once more we should be able to collect the remaining leaves and that should be enough to get them all collected for this year!
On the plus side the new drainage in the bunkers on the 1st and 14th is working well, and we have not had any water lying in these bunkers. The turfing has been completed on the 3rd, 13th and 16th. While it’s too wet for leaf collecting, we are removing the last few dead trees around the course.
The canopy on the big oak tree left of the 3rd tee is being reduced on TUESDAY 10TH DECEMBER, unfortunately the pathway will be closed as I’m sure you don’t want any branches to fall on you, however there is no other way to access the 3rd fairway. The public footpath to the left and also the bank to the right of the tee are simply to wet and slippery, so on this day holes 1-4 will be CLOSED until the works have been completed.
I am pleased with the conditions of the greens; the health and firmness is good and they are still playable even through all of the rain we have had. Many other local courses are often on temporary greens or have holes closed, so we are doing very well to just have no trolleys as the only restriction. Please be patient with us regarding the leaves as we are governed by the weather and the restrictions we put on are only put in place for the long-term benefit of the course.
On behalf of all of the greenstaff I would like to wish you all a very happy Christmas and a prosperous 2020.
Paul, Charlie, Matt, Kyle and Dan.