Sunday, 3 July 2016

Over the past few weeks my staff have been busy cleaning up the remains of the storm damage earlier in June amongst performing regular maintenance jobs and other construction projects. With the cooler temperatures setting in both in the air and the soil, it has limited turf growth on all surfaces severely which means we reduce our mowing practices to allow for this.

The positive of the last two weeks is that we have had dry weather and more time available to complete different maintenance practices so we are now cutting greens with walk-behind mowers at least twice a week and using the ride-on mowers on the greens on other days. To give you a quick run-down it normally takes 3 hours for one man to cut 18 greens with a ride-on mower compared to it taking 4 men to cut 18 greens with walk-behind mowers in 2.5 hours. Overall it takes over 3 times the amount of labour to cut greens with walk behinds than it does with ride-on mowers! However, walk-behind mowers provide a superior cut promoting quality ball roll, less surface compaction and consistent green speeds so it is a worthwhile practice.

Other jobs that are being completed include:

  • We have commenced manual removal of kikuyu encroachment on greens. You may notice slitting of edges of greens as we physically cut and remove kikuyu runners that are trying to 'creep' into the green. These areas will be re-seeded and top dressed after completion with minimal surface disruption.
  • Some areas on tees that are regularly used and worn have been seeded and top dressed to promote some winter growth. As previously stated in cool conditions like we are experiencing, growth rates of turf drops very rapidly and tee recovery becomes very slow during the winter months. Our tee surfaces that receive minimal sunlight are receiving even less through winter as the sun moves on a lower arc during these times. Thankfully spring is only 7 weeks away!
  • 18th tee surrounds have been sprayed and barking of this area has commenced as of today as our bark piles are finally accessible with machinery after the recent rains. This is scheduled to be completed this week providing no more rain halts our progress. 
  • Commenced construction to extend more tees on the course and improve aesthetics around teeing areas. Currently sourcing more materials to complete these works in-house.
  • Trimming of low branches in the rough areas has commenced with areas between 1-2 and 2-3 being completed. This is a very large job  as we have so many trees so it will be a process that will be carried out one hole at a time. This will ultimately provide more sunlight to areas of rough, open up areas of the course and also allow for easier recovery shots out of the rough.

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