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Greens are in very good condition with no outbreaks of disease over the Christmas period, which is normally a hotspot for Fusarium to appear.
Preventive fungicide applications continue to be applied monthly to combat further threats, this will enable the greens to remain in good condition for the coming season.
Greens continue to be cut with pedestrian mowers once a week at a cutting height of 5.5 mm. At all other times the greens are switched and blown removing dew and debris.
Raked fully twice a week with footprints attended to daily.
Special attention is being paid to distributing the sand evenly around the base of the bunkers and keeping the back edges defined.
This extra work is having a positive effect in the playability and the cosmetics, but we do rely on our members and guests to rake the bunkers correctly to maintain standards. (Keep pushing the sand forward!)
Bunkers that require more sand will be topped up in the spring before the golfing season commences.
Tees are still being cut when required at a cutting height of 17 mm.
In the coming weeks all tees will be aerated with the verti-drainer to reduce compaction from winter play.
100 and 150 yard markers have been replaced with new posts and a fresh lick of paint. The mounts in the ground were a problem last year so we have replaced them allowing post to be removed if necessary.
Tee markers will soon have their annual makeover when they will be sanded down, painted and varnished ready for the spring.
Short game area
Work is progressing very well to the new short game area on the practice ground.
The green is now ready for the cores to be applied in March once we hollow core the greens as part of our greens aeration programme.
Construction of the bunkers is now complete and drainage has recently been installed.
Sand will be added prior to area being open.
Ground works to the teeing ground is finished and recent works have concentrated on creating the foundations for the winter mats.
Note: Playing from these mats is optional and not compulsory and was designed to give a different prospective of the green from a slightly elevated position.
Practicing on the grassed areas will be encouraged and our work in the spring will include establishing better grass coverage to this area and replicating cutting heights on the golf course.
A woodland path has also been created which links this area and more importantly creates a safe passage, avoiding the need to walk on the driving range.
Order of future works:
- Install mats
- Crown lift and Prune trees.
- Turf teeing ground and green surrounds.
- Apply cores to green
- Establish better grass coverage in front of the green to allow fairway heights of cut.
- Grow-in area ready for opening in August.
9th greenside bunker
Improving the bunkers is something we always consider and try to achieve with strict budgets. Recently the 9th greenside bunker was identified as one bunker that could be improved considerably without breaking the bank.
The leading face had eroded to such a degree the trap had become nothing more than a splash bunker with very little penalty.
Drainage was also an issue with this bunker being prone to flooding that left a puddle in the base for several days.
The programme of works consisted of re-establishing the front face with consideration to mowing angles, creating more depth and installing drainage.
Ground works have now been completed leaving only the bunker banking to be turfed and replenishing the sand.
Bunker will be closed until the newly laid turf is established.
Woodland clearance work has been carried out to the area adjacent to the 12th green. This area was identified for work as many dead and decaying trees were leaning over the path which potentially could fall.
Thinning out this area will also encourage better air flow which will have a positive effect to the 12th green.
Annually we hire a cherry picker and use it to assist in removing any dangerous limbs around the course and public walkways that our trees effect.
We also plan to use this machine to help our work in reducing the height of the trees adjacent to the 16th tee to allow more light and airflow.
This work was carried out several years ago to good effect and should improve the growth and recovery to the tee.
Trolley and buggy use
The weather this winter has been relatively kind in terms of rainfall which has enabled buggy and trolley use without too many restrictions.
We have a very tight course and spreading wear can be difficult so I do encourage members to carry your clubs if possible to protect the course further.
Ropes and signage is all around the course for guidance, but we have noticed buggies going beyond the ridge on the 17th which could be dangerous for the operator and may cause unnecessary damage. Please leave buggies on the fairway in front of the green to avoid slipping into the pond and the greenstaff having to fish you out.