Monday, October 17, 2016

The Hottest, Driest Summer I Can Remember

As I watch The Weather Channel and see the massive amounts of rainfall dumped on the Atlantic coast from Hurricane Matthew and the recent storms in the Pacific Northwest I am astonished that we have received so little rain this summer.  As of today we are sitting at a total rainfall in the past 57 days of 0.15".  It is so little rainfall that this creek which runs below the bridge on #14 has dried up.  My heart goes out to those who have had their lives disrupted or destroyed by the recent storms but we could definitely use some of the rain.

Not only has this summer been a dry one but it has been a relentlessly hot one as this graphic from September shows.  It actually dawned on me the other day that we have not had a "rain day" where the agronomy staff gets rained out all summer long.  Usually we can count on several of these throughout the year but this year, not one.

Other areas of Tennessee have received periodic rainfall during the summer but our lack of rainfall has set us up for an exceptional drought conditions in the Chattanooga area.  For the golf course these dry conditions have provided some good and some bad conditions.  On the bad side it has been extremely hot especially during the heat of the summer but our faithful golfers still came out and enjoyed the course and we thank you for that.  On the good side the dry conditions resulted in some rather firm fairways which gave our golfers some added distance on their drives, and how doesn't like a little extra distance on your drive.

If you have played over the past few weeks you have probably noticed the use of portable sprinklers being used on extremely dry areas around the course.  Yes, we are running our irrigation system most every night but these areas are in need of extra attention and in most cases simply don't get good coverage from the irrigation system.  Making sure the turfgrass goes into dormancy healthy is the main priority during the fall months and will hopefully ensure a good transition in the spring.

It has been a looooonnnnnggg, dry summer and our dedicated staff has accomplished a lot of great work on the golf course.  This is my favorite time of the year as the leaves on the trees change colors, the shadows creep farther across the course, and the wildlife on the course get more active.  We will be working everyday to keep the leaves off of the course so you can find your golf balls in the playing areas, after all we do have one or two thousand trees on our course.  We hope you will come join us and enjoy the course during this special time of the year.