Saturday, December 2, 2017

WELCOME DECEMBER.

Why cart paths only in December?    This is because the grass isn't actively growing where it has a chance to recoup from excessive wear.   Most problem areas are where carts are congested.  Around greens and tees but also fairway bunkers and even trees can make cart traffic confined to one small area.   In order to prevent damage we have determined that the best answer is to confine carts to paths during the months of December and March.  We felt it was a better alternative than to not allow carts at all. January and February the pro shop is closed so carts are not available.   

Why did you bring in all the bunker rakes?    We are down to a skeleton crew during the off season months so we are not able to rake bunkers.  The rakes get hidden in leaves and can get run over by carts and equipment.  They also hinder our efforts to keep the course clean.  We use the winter months to go over the rakes and make sure they are in good shape and get them ready for next season.  

Any plans for the winter months?    Besides all the sharpening, and maintenance of the equipment we have planned to do some tree work.    Best time is when the ground is frozen and no snow.  We will first concentrate on safety issues, removing dead trees and branches that could cause harm to player or property.  Next we will look at areas where trees have grown   causing playability issues and where we wanted to promote good turf and finally removing trees that were growing into one another.  We feel it is better to sacrifice one tree for the health of another.   Their is never a shortage of work to keep us busy.    


This tree is in bad shape,  you can see the rot around the base. It needs to be removed for safety reasons.   


Shade, carts, and equipment make growing grass under this tree near impossible.  


We are removing two trees near the cart path for better turf and also to allow the other trees to mature.  


This tree on 13 is now restricting play from the tee.   


Work in the clubhouse is progressing.   The bar and everything else has been removed.  You have to break a couple of eggs to make an omelet!!!!


This may be the last time we are able to change cups.   Ground may soon be frozen.  We put the holes closer to the edge to try and limit wear on the greens.  
A sure sign of winter is the return of Buffleheads.  They are in the duck family and spend there summers north of here all the way into Canada where they breed.  They will stick around until the pond freezes over.  

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

THE FAT LADY IS GETTING READY TO SING

 As the saying goes the show is not over until the fat lady sings.  So lets just say she is warming up for the finally.   The Greens and Grounds staff is now down to its hearty few who will brave the cold and keep the course as playable as possible and ready the equipment and grounds for next season.  Let me take this opportunity to thank the rest of the staff on a successful season.  With out these people we would not have the course we enjoy so much.   "THANKS GUYS". 

Before the final curtain comes down we continue to spend most of our time picking up or removing leaves.   We need to apply our winter plant protectants, top-dress greens, continue our Belgium Block installation and a few other miscellaneous tasks.    The following are a few pictures that were taken last week.
The  Kitchen staff is busy prepping for the big day.   Well over a hundred diners and more than 20 turkeys will be served at the thanksgiving feast tomorrow.
Adding some block along path by nine ladies tee.
Blue Birds hang around all winter.   Nice to spot one posing for a picture.    

Frosty morning work,  time to bring in the Bunker rakes for a winter spruce up.

Installing a drain to the left of 10 green to catch run off from melting snows.  
I had the pleasure to meet "Mr. Monarch".  Dr. "Chip" Taylor on my recent trip to Kansas.   Dr Taylor is the founder of Monarch watch a  program run by the University of Kansas dedicated to the protection and education for Monarchs.  We are  working with the USGA and Audubon International to get golf courses involved  in providing more habitat.  For more info. go to Monarchwatch.org.  
Well said Mr. Palmer!!!!
Our 2017 Greens and Grounds staff.  Thank you gents for a job well done.   Everyone have a great Thanksgiving.



















Saturday, November 11, 2017

WHAT FROST?

 It was 23 degrees when I got to work.  A record setting low.  But where is the frost?  
Doesn't look any like frost. 
May be a little here?  
We have what I call a "Black Frost" this morning.   Its hard to see.  One of the tell tale signs is when you step on it,  It does not spring back.  A sure sigh of a problem.   What you can't show in a picture is it actually has a crunchy nose when stepped on.   This kind of frost can really damage grass if walked or driven on.   We will be extra cautious today and make sure this is gone before we open the course for play.  
On another note work has started on the new patio expansion.  
The putting green will remain closed for the rest of the season to avoid everyone walking across it.  To access the pro shop Please walk around the green.  

Saturday, November 4, 2017

POST HALLOWEEN

Early November and we still have not had a real hard frost.  I am not complaining but the grass is still growing and the leaves are falling.  We are doing double duty with mowing and sweeping.  Glad to announce that most of the sodding is finished.  As time allows we will start placing the Belgium Block around selective areas next to cart paths.  This will add some "polish" to our paths. 

I am not sure if Benny is smiling because this is his last piece of sod or he is just a happy employee.  Either way works for me.   
This time of year worms become an issue.   Last week I was asked if we were letting the fairways grow a little.   I had to say that they are longer,  but not intentionally.   We are trying to mow in the afternoons when the grass is dry to avoid pancaking the worm casts.  When they are dry they tend to break up. If they are wet they turn to mud and can smother the turf.  Because the days are so short the grass doesn't dry until late in the day.  That doesn't give us a lot of time.  Unfortunately sometimes we are forced to cut when the grass is wet just to get them mowed.  
Sorry about the clubhouse area looking a little messy.  We are getting ready for the construction.  Large plants have been removed.  Smaller perennials and shrubs are being relocated around the clubhouse.   

And finally a fitting end to October-----Trick or Treat?