Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Your crew designed, constructed and erected a regulation size goal post made out of maple trees harvested on the MGC property.
We put it up Left of 18 green and it will be used for the Beacon House event tomorrow.  In time it will find a good fireplace to call home.

The Big Tent is once again up on the Driving Range for the annual Beacon House Celebrity Classic.
The event is now 36 holes and takes place over a two day period.  The first day is golf clinics and a tent party the second is Golf and another tent party.
At first glance this morning I thought the trees were calling it a season after only a month of leaves.
I know it was 47 yesterday (on June 24th) and 45 this morning as we all pulled into the shop but our northern trees are tougher than that.
The low light in the morning created this beautiful back drop.
It really is a joy working outside in such a beautiful place.
We are starting to manage some thicker native areas that are in play with our new DR brush cutter.  Our goal is to move around the course and bush-whack these areas a couple times a year.  This will be addition management but is made simple by with the new unit.
Staff member Mike H. is the master at this kind of work :)

Just a few of the beautiful wildflowers found on Greywalls
What happens when mowing the hills of Greywalls and your mower gets a low tire?
It blows right off the rim
 Early May 2014
Mid June 2014

A month and a half of recovery now and the 17 green complex is really starting to fill in.  The newly seeded areas are finally germinating and if we can get reduced foot traffic they should rapidly recover.
Tee aerification took place last week on Greywalls.  The process was broken into two days and was accomplished flawlessly.  The cores were vertically mowed and blown off before mowing.  We followed that up with an organic Sanctuary fertilizer application.  The 1.2" rain the next day was fantastic for us as it helped get water into the hole filled profile and reduce the localized dry spots (LDS) on the tees.

It seem every year no matter how many times we stress its importance a new staff member forgets to tighten the fuel cap on a back pack blower.  Fuel spills out and we end up with dead turf but it is a reality learning experience for the rest of the staff.

Friday, June 6, 2014

This picture of #17 green on Greywalls was taken one month ago today, the day we overseeded this green.  The recovery process was slow for the first two weeks as temperatures remained cold.  The last two weeks have been much better and recover has been rapid.  The toughest thing to do agronomically is grow new grass from seed on a putting surface open for play.  It will take time but the Greywalls 16/17 greens will recover.

During this 'regrowing time' the Height of cut must remain slightly higher than usual to enhance the recovery process.  While this increased height is only 0.015" (0.140" vs. 0.125") it still provides a benefit to the plant as a little more plant material is left for photosynthesis.  Other inputs also change during a recovery process; increased fertilization, decreased growth regulators, reduced mowing frequency and reduced grooming.  You add all of these things up and it certainly effects the play-ability of the playing surface.  The greens are slower than usual and the depressions of recovering turf don't provide the perfect ball roll scenario we typically present.
With time and further recovery we will once again begin our regular maintenance program and the greens will once again be there former glory but it is not simply all about "shaving the greens down" as I hear so often.
A big thank you to our member Roger Johnson for purchasing the club a goose away beacon for the Heritage pond.  This solar powered unit will power on at dark and flash occasionally.  The thought behind this unit is it will disrupt the sleeping pattern of resting birds and encourage them to move to another location.  That other location will be out of the protected pond where other wildlife can then feast on them.
We will try anything in our battle with the Canadian goose.  
Our Resident turkey on Greywalls is quit the character.  He follows us around in the morning watching us complete our tasks.  While spraying weeds in the native this week I had to physically stop the rig five times, get off the sprayer, pick this guy up and carry him away to a new location.
Monday was our first scheduled maintenance day on Greywalls.  We completed a vertical mowing and topdressing to the greens and approaches.  It was not easy completing this task in the rain but your crew battled on and completed the duty.  
The first bunker grooming took place this week.  Our new staff was introduced to the task and they did a wonderful job.  

This is a close up picture of the massive amount of worm casting that we deal with on the Heritage Fairways in the spring.  The worm activity is very beneficial to our soils yet very detrimental to our mower reels.
Dragging the fairways on dry days and mowing at a higher height of cut in the spring are two ways we reduce reel damage.
The Greywalls boys working on our annual hill side sapling removal.
This picture was taken the second week of May, we never had this much snow hang around this long.
Irrigation start up was a breeze on both courses this year.  With the deep winter frost we were preparing for the worst but we only had 3 initial broken heads on the Heritage course and the only pipe failures were self inflicted.  We were lucky enough to drive snow fence post down and into the pipe three times around #4 green Heritage and once by the putting green on Greywalls.  We had never hit a pipe before and this year we hit it 4 times, amazing.  
                                                    Cut out section waiting for a coupling
                                                   Cleaning the pipe
                                                   Coupling on and tight, ready to re-pressurize
The Greywalls crew was able to get a few drain projects completed before we opened for the season.  We addressed the wet valley before number 1 green and the wet fairway location on 8 fairway.  

                                                   1 drain
                                                   1 drain
                                                   1 drain
                                                   1 drain
                                                   1 drain
                                                   1 drain completed
                                                   8 drain
                                                   8 drain

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