For the past three winters Willie and his crew have been renovating the irrigation system around our greens to add part circle heads which will only water the putting surface. This has been a long project in the making but will help, and has already helped, us to reduce our use of water and electricity while at the same time providing a better playing surface for our golfers.
Willie and Jonathan, with help this year from Barry, have worked tirelessly in all kinds of weather to add new control wire, pipe, and Rainbird irrigation heads to the greens loop. So why have we gone to all this trouble? When the golf course was constructed full circle irrigation heads were placed around every green. These heads, as the name implies, make a complete 360 degree rotation watering both the greens and the surrounds. With the new heads we are able to adjust where the water is applied and we can water only the greens without watering the surrounds at the same time.
Installing these new part circle heads will help the playing conditions of the course, especially play around the greens, but will also help us continue to reduce our use of water. In the past in order to get 0.2" of water on our greens which might be needed to water in fertilizer or a fungicide we would have to run the full circle irrigation heads for 5-7 minutes watering both the green and the surrounds. Many times the surrounds did not need any additional moisture and that would make them soft and difficult to play through or maintain. With the new part circle heads we can place the same amount of water on the greens in 2 minutes with no unwanted irrigation on the surrounds. Having these new heads in place will reduce our water use on the greens by over 1 million gallons of water annually and will reduce our use of electricity to operate our pumps as well.
I am very proud of the dedication and hard work Willie and Jonathan, and Barry this year, have shown to this project and to continuing to improve the golf course. We are very lucky to have crew members who go out of their way everyday to take ownership of the golf course and give it all they have.
As I have said this has been a long project and a lot of hard work has gone into it. We will be sodding the trench lines over the next week and then adjusting the sod as it settles. If you are playing, please do not step on the sod or play off of it until spring arrives and it starts to green up. These areas should be played as Ground Under Repair until further notice.