Friday, October 12, 2018

Not a very pleasant end to the week weather wise and the forecast doesn't look good for the week end either.  100% chance of 30 - 50mm of rain for Saturday and 100% chance for 30 - 80mm for Sunday means it may be a wet one!!  The wind is also a pain with debris down across the courses but the crew did a great job again today in particular cleaning up after some gale force gusts on Thursday.  The wind was so strong that it has even started shredding the bark from the Gum trees which normally doesn't generally happen until well into November.  

Leaves on 3R green makes putting tough.

4R fway covered.

Bark being stripped from Gum trees.

No motorised buggies allowed on the West course today and virtually no play came out as a result.  The greens stay dry though so we took advantage of the situation and got the West greens de-thatched and mown while the surface was dry in the late morning which is a bonus as this is normally done in front of play while it is still dewy.  A dry surface means a much better result and the photo below shows a tiny sample of what was removed with the main thing being a lot of it was dead material that makes up the thatch layer in the turf which is the layer between the soil surface and the top of the leaf blades.  The less dead material in there the better and the de-thatch also helps create some new shoots.  We also took the opportunity to put some liquid fertiliser on the West greens after the de-thatch so although no golf it was a win win for us. 

Mainly brown dead material removed.

The new stump grinder that will primarily be used as a tree root grinder got it's first run this week up the RHS 1W fairway.  It did a great job as expected and so starts what will be a virtually never ending task of removing tree roots from fairways in particular.  At this time of year with the increase in grass growth it will be difficult to allocate time to this new task but we will get it out as often as possible.  It is a head down type of job and takes a lot of concentration so if you see it out on the courses please make sure the operator knows you are about to play.

The new addition to the fleet.

Tree root chopped off on 18W.

The forecast may not help us win next week though as a contractor had been booked to add some sand to bunkers on the West course. That requires the use of a large backhoe (and shovels + rakes) and trailers to transport the sand around.  Unfortunately if it is too wet then the job is postponed and the problem is the contractors are normally booked a month ahead and it is normally that long before I can get them onsite again.  That also puts it back into the busy time of tee and green renovations as well.  Here's hoping the forecast is wrong.


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