Tuesday, February 1, 2011

February 1

Doesn't time fly by with February already upon us.  The monumental job of cleaning up Brisbane's flood effected golf courses continues with helpers coming from as far away as Peninsula GC in Melbourne.  McLeod GC already have some holes open as does Wolston Park.  Both Brisbane and Indooroopilly had their courses playable over last weekend with a few shortened holes in play.  On our own patch here at Cool Tweed I don't think I have seen the course better for this time of year although the River greens are still a bit behind where I would like them to be.

The weather over the past two weeks has returned to a traditional summer with hot sunny humid conditions that has helped the River greens in particular move towards a full grass cover.  As I mentioned a couple of posts ago it is imperative that the River greens enter winter with a full cover of grass so they can deal with the shade issues that restrict growth and wear from our heavy play.  With Cyclone Yasi bearing down on the Queensland coast meaning potential rainfall for us and our long term local forecast of more rain, meaning cloudy conditions, I have this week opted to slightly lift the mowing height on the River greens to encourage the last chance at optimum growth conditions.  There has also been some re-turfing of some of the worst areas that have not recovered from last years shade on greens 4 and 13.  The greens will be fertilised this coming Thursday, weather permitting, and will then possibly be de-thatched depending on the weather and will definitely be sanded in the coming weeks, most likely next Tuesday following the Ladies competition.  If I can attain a full recovery of the turf surface the height may be lowered back next month.  We are certainly not alone with our greens being behind where they should be for this time of year with every SE Qld Superintendent I talk to experiencing the same and all the Course Blogs from the local area mentioning the same.

The West greens have not enjoyed the return to traditional summer temperatures but are in great condition for this time of year with the dis-coloration from the foreign Couch control a bit unsightly.  The high soil temperatures we are currently experiencing literally shaves the root structure of the Bentgrass meaning that the greens need to be kept moist to survive.  This in turn means that pitchmarks are at their worst and that is clearly evidenced when you walk on any west course green.  Please, please, please help the turf by repairing your pitchmark as every un-repaired pitchmark is a potential site for disease infection.  This is the type of weather that the fan at the 17th West green was installed for to help the green cope with and appears to be working with the green in the best condition it has been in at this time of the year for some time. 

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