Course Managers Report
The spring so far has seen the course develop well and we have been able to manage playing surfaces through the inconsistencies of the British weather. The greens particularly have remained very firm and well-paced. As I mentioned in my last report it is testament to the work completed over the last ten years that we now do not have to complete disruptive aeration at this time of year and therefore increasing the time we can present good playing conditions.
As we quickly move towards the summer period we will aim to continue to present the golf courses in the best possible condition, your help in repairing pitch marks and raking bunkers goes a long way in achieving our goals.
Greens are now being cut at 4mm our summer height of cut, we aim to predominately use pedestrian mowers on the greens but time and staff resource are limiting during the summer months.
We have recently solid tined the putting surfaces using 8mm diameter tines, completing this in conjunction with the top dressing described below, enables the dressing to be integrated more efficiently and the surface disruption is minimal. This type of aeration is completed on a monthly basis.
Top dressing at this time of year plays an important part of our management of the playing surfaces. Top dressing helps to even out any discrepancies in the surface as a result of indifferent growth or areas recovering from the winter. Our aim is to apply little and often to help integrate the dressing into the surface. The amount applied to the greens during April and May is in the region of 50 tonnes per course. Our target for the year is 180 tonnes per 18 greens. When we apply the dressing to greens we make sure we are over lapping onto collar run offs and apron areas, this helps to improve all of these areas around the green complexes. In one application for 18 greens at this time of year we are applying 12 tonnes, this amount is easily dispersed into the sward and creates very little disruption to the playing surfaces. The continual process of top dressing improves the firmness of the greens, dilutes any build-up of organic matter within the soil profile and most importantly improves the characteristics of the top soil in which the desired grass species can thrive.
Collars and Aprons
Collars and aprons are currently been cut at 10mm three times per week. The collars and aprons are managed to similar specification as the greens as we are trying to replicate the firmness and playability found on the putting surfaces. This provides an array of shots to be played from around the putting surface the aprons also encourage the running shot into the greens.
We are cutting tees twice per week at 10mm with pedestrian mowers. Once consistent growth has been achieved the cutting intensity with increase along with a reduced height of cut to 8mm. We have top dressed all tees and will be applying more dressing along with seed to winter tees and weaker areas of normal tees to encourage new growth in these areas. All tees have received the first of two summer feeds of an organic based 8.0.0, this will help to encourage recovery from the spring and promote sustained growth.
Over the last week we have experienced some good growth on the fairways are as a consequence we are able to present them in a improved fashion. The fairways are cut at 14mm twice per week. Localised devoting has been taking place and the Divot evening planned for Thursday 19th May and Tuesday 7th June will help enormously to get all fairways devoted during good growing conditions.
I am very pleased to report we have employed a mechanic to look after our machinery fleet. For the past six months we have been trying to cope without having a mechanic but this has been very difficult for us placing even more time pressure on our existing staff and also having to spend a large amount on labour from our main dealers for tasks we could not repair in house.
Mark Overton has joined the team and has already had a positive impact on the machinery maintenance. I am confident that mark will be great asset to the club and will help us to achieve our goals here at Enville.
Enville Golf Club