Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Last Saturday the membership approved to install  a new irrigation System and cart paths.  This is very exciting and will no doubt improve the conditions on the golf course.  Now the real work begins.  Over the next few weeks the construction company will start to mobilize.   We are going to use the left side of the sixteenth fairway as a staging area.   It will take between 20 and 25 weeks for the system to be fully installed.  Leibold, our construction company will work as long as the weather permits this winter and then start up again as soon as possible next spring.   I believe you will be surprised at how non-disruptive the process is. No more than one hole will be closed at a time.   I will use this blog to keep you posted on the progress we are making. 

We had 13 children participate in this years Bill Moran Fishing Derby.  A good time was had by all.  The Idea is to show case our pond and its water quality to the membership.  We have not had use any pesticides in our pond in over 10 years.   We use various best management practices  to control the algae.  We have even had articles written in various publications on how we treat our algae problem.   Willard "Bill" Moran was instrumental in starting and helping us achieve Audubon Certification and was an avid fisherman.  A special thanks to his son Geoffrey for helping on Saturday.   Congrats to the winners!!!!!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Special Membership Meeting Tommorrow

The votes are due tomorrow. I hope you have all had a chance to review the exciting proposal regarding the Irrigation system and cart paths. If you have any last minute questions you can always call me, or flag me down. If you can make tomorrows meeting that would even be better. I plan on making a brief explanation of the impacts of the new system. Cart paths are a welcome addition.  I think you will be pleased with the new locations of some of the paths and what we plan to do.  I will be there to answer any questions you may have.

There has just been so much rain recently that the soils are absolutely saturated. We started installing some additional drainage in the 18th. rough. The area just is not drying out. We will follow this up by adding drainage to the bottom of 14 and a few other areas. If these areas don't dry out shortly, we may have some substantial turf loss.

On another front I am doing battle with a mole on 14 green. He is very clever avoiding my traps. This has the makings of caddie shack all over again.

the start of some drainage

Pete Hunter checking elevations and cleaning pipe

Score:   Mole 1,  Ceplo 0 

Thursday, September 15, 2011


We are still wet in areas from all the rain.   Areas that are not normally wet are giving us problems because they do not have any drainage. I am watching these areas, if they don't dry out shortly we may have some permanent turf loss.   Hopefully we will get some good drying weather and by next week we will be able to remove all the blue stakes. 

We have all heard the battle cry "do more with less" and we certainly have had to tighten our belts.  Recently the "less" has been TIME.  last week we lost a day because of the holiday.  This week we loose Friday because of the tournament, not to mention all the time lost because of the rain.  The good news is we are starting to recover and will have the course in pretty good shape for the member-member.  We will have all the rough mowed for the first time in two weeks.  We are a little behind in divoting fairways and hope to catch up next week. 

The exciting vote  on Saturday, September 24th. will determine the path of the club for the foreseeable future.   A new irrigation system will help us improve the condition of the course.  The irrigation system is the most important tool that a superintendent has to maintain good conditions.  The cart paths are the eye sore of the club.  fixing both these situations well greatly improve Rockland Country Club.  If you have questions about any of this please do not hesitate to ask.    I hope to see everyone on the 24th. 

In closing,  we are holding our annual Bill Moran fishing derby on Sunday, September 25th. from 4:30 to 5:00.  Let me or Roisin know if you can make it.   It's a fun day with some very good fishing.  

Last years fishing derby

Still wet in areas, please avoid blue staked areas. 

Thursday, September 8, 2011


The course never had a chance to dry out after Irene.  to make matters worse, we have had 5.65 inches of  rain in the last three days.  The problem is areas that normally don't get wet....are saturated and there is no drainage in these areas.  I do expect the course to be open tomorrow but I am afraid we will still be cart paths only.  The staff is working hard to get the course playable for tomorrow,  every bunker needs to be fixed AGAIN!!!!!

too much water !!!

# 1 fairway above the bunker

even 6 is wet !!!!

Sunday, September 4, 2011


At the last Board of Governors meeting we decided to move forward with the strategic plan.  The plan consists of installing a new state of the art Irrigation System that would include all new pipes, sprinkler heads, new pumps and Increasing the depth of our pond.  It also includes fixing all of our cart paths. 

The Irrigation system is showing it's age.  (23 years old to be exact)  We have very poor coverage on our fairways, greens and tees. This translates into many isolated dry areas that we just can not water effectively.  We spend many man hours hand watering these dry areas.  Although the new system will not completely eliminate hand watering it will substantially reduce it.  We also do not have the ability to water the roughs, espically along the fairways.  environmental issues and effecency are also concerns.  There are many other reasons for the installation of a new system.  I  just don't have space enough to list them all here.

Cart paths speak for themselves:   All you need to do is play one round of golf and you will notice that our paths are in very  poor condition.  The strategic plan has reviewed every path on the course.  Some are going to be relocated because of safety concerns and playability,  others just need to be touched up. 

Stay tuned:  We are going to call for a special meeting of the membership later this month to explain the need for these improvements,  time frame when is all this going to start and how long will it take. what can you expect while the work is being done and how all of this is going to be financed. 

In the mean time don't hesitate to call me if you have any questions.  This is a big undertaking to say the least and we need everyone to know what to expect.


Green areas will receive full coverage. 

Cart paths speak for themselves.