Hello and welcome to our fresh new blog for 2018. We have decided to bring our blog back this year as I feel it’s a good way for the greenkeeping department to let you know what’s going on around the course. Hopefully the blog will also explain the reasoning behind our tasks and will help to better educate the golfers and possibly reduce the number of moans and groans that we are receiving. Our intention is to release a new blog once a month and try to include as much information as we can on what’s been happening on the golf course.
As you will all be aware we have experienced a bad run of weather in the last few months. I think the last time the full course was open would have been around about the end of November. The forecast for the next few weeks is not looking much better. We understand it can be frustrating for you as golfers to either be playing on winter greens or not being able to play at all due to course closure, but spare a thought for the greenkeepers too as we have several jobs which need to be done but unfortunately can’t due to the weather. It’s very frustrating to say the least.
Since the greens have not been played on since November not many of you will have noticed the disease marks on the greens called fusarium patch. This disease can be sprayed out with a fungicide. We have known about this problem since the middle of December but unfortunately, we have not had the right ground or weather conditions to be able to spray them. Fortunately, the weather allowed and on Monday 15th of January we were able to spray the fungicide. Winter greens also got a small feed to help them along.
Throughout the winter you may have noticed that the winter greens are now getting a little worn. Due to these greens being smaller they are not really designed for as much play as they have been getting in the recent months. Changing the hole on these greens can be difficult due to the stony ground and carrying out this job could cause damage to our hole changing equipment. As golfers we have to be thankful that winter greens is an option as this still allows us to play golf when the ground conditions are not at their best.
The reconstruction of the 8th tee has been started but unfortunately this is taking longer than we would have liked it too due to the recent weather conditions. The first phase of this process was removing the turf which has almost been completed. We are hopeful we can start to make some progress on this task in the next few weeks as we know the start of the season will be here very soon.
With all the bad weather we have been experiencing recently our team have taken the opportunity to upgrade the maintenance facility. We have installed new LED low cost lighting, new heaters in the drying rooms and freshly painted the workshop, toilets, canteen and office to brighten the place up. Tee markers have also started to be painted.
You’ll all be aware that with recent weather the course has been closed numerous times in recent months and the all too common saying that can be heard from golfers is “we have played in worse than that before”. Unfortunately living in a world where health and safety has taking over almost everything and developed the now blame culture where if someone falls the first thing they think about is who can they claim money off rather than the old school it was my own stupid fault?? I am quite sure that most of you would manage to go out and play no problem in bad conditions, but it only takes one person to fall and sustain an injury and the club could be looking at a claim against them it’s a horrible society to be in nowadays but that’s the reality of it. So now we have to protect you as golfers and ourselves as greenkeepers. So, we are not closing the course for the sake of it, it all comes down to SAFETY.
Any other news
We have had some changes in the greenkeeping team over the last year. We welcomed Chris Hunter to the team as a mechanic/greenkeeper. Chris has a great knowledge of car mechanics and previously worked as a landscaper, he joined the team in March last year and has fitted in well with the team. Ryan Queen one of our assistant greenkeepers has left us for pastures new so we wish him all the best in his new venture. We are currently advertising for new staff to join our team.
Hopefully I have managed to cover most things that have been happening on and off the course in the last few months and that the blog gives you some insight into some of the tasks we as greenkeepers have been carrying out. Fingers crossed for better weather and I hope we will be able to start making some more progress on the course.
Deputy Head Greenkeeper