Monday, June 23, 2014

June has been a busy month

A lot of work has taken place at Harrison Bay since my last post.  The golf course maintenance staff has been hard at work and with summer temperatures finally arriving the turfgrass has taken off and the course is looking better and better by the day.

The greens have completely recovered from our June aerification and we are back to our normal maintenance practices such as double cutting, rolling, topdressing, vertical mowing, and venting.  These processes are tedious and sometimes inconvenient but they are a necessity to continue to maintain high quality putting surfaces.  Please bear with us as we do these practices, especially if you are one of the first groups out.  We are working as fast as we can to get it done right for all our guests.

One of the projects that we took care of while we were closed for aerification was to repair the winter injury areas in 10 and 15 fairways.  The damaged sod was cut up with a sod cutter and removed from the damaged area.

We then used large rolls of sod from Mid Tenn Turf in Manchester, TN to repair the areas.  It was a lot of work and of course it rained on us right in the middle of the process which made it that much more difficult but the staff stayed with it and got the work done.  These areas have been rolled several times and have been topdressed and fertilized and are ready for play.  We will continue to lower the height of cut down over the next month until it is back to fairway height.

One of the things we are doing different this year is our mowing pattern on our tees and fairways and we get a lot of questions about this.  Mowing the fairways and tees in this pattern is known by many superintendents as the "classic cut" as it takes us back to the day before the modern lightweight fairway units that made striping fairways so easy.  This mowing pattern was chosen because it reduced the time it takes to mow the fairways, the fuel used, and the emissions created.

Some people like the look and some don't.  I guess it is a personal preference but we are doing it to save time and money.  We estimate that by mowing our fairways in this pattern we will save 312 manhours, 811 gallons of diesel fuel, and eliminate the production of 18,641 pounds of point source CO2.  Along with the sharp look that this mowing pattern provides these saving are the icing on the cake.

As the work is never done on a golf course we have several more projects that we will be carrying out during the month of July to continue to improve the course.  We will be aerifying and topdressing the tees this month, we will put the finishing touches on the greens plugging project that Willie and Jonathen have done such a great job on, and we will continue to repair areas in fairways and around greens damaged by the cold winter of 2014.

As the summer progresses please take time to enjoy all of the aspects of the golf course and not just the green grass.  We have an abundance of wildlife to enjoy watching and the Operation Pollinator plantings on holes #1 and #10 are beginning to bloom.  As the seasons progress and these areas mature we should have a great stand of wildflower color in these areas which will provide food and shelter for many bees and butterflies.

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