Friday, July 26, 2019

Another week of glorious weather and I read that July 2019 is poised to be the hottest month the world has ever recorded.  The warmest July on record for Brisbane was actually last year but that also has a chance of being beaten this year.  This time last year I was in Iceland in the middle of summer and it never got above 10 degrees so at least they help keep the averages down!!

The fertiliser that was applied to the River course greens certainly got a response with quite a bit of leaf being put on them this week.  The River course was closed on Thursday afternoon to allow us unhindered access for maintenance and we took the chance to de-thatch the greens.  It is quite unusual to do this in July but we got a great result.  A lot of dead and decaying leaf matter was pulled out and the greens got a great chance to "breath".  The photo below shows some of the material removed and there is not much green coloured leaf matter in there which is just the result we were after.

Primarily dead material removed.

It is still quite cool in the shade and the northern side of any east - west running fairways are still very thin due to the shading effect of the trees.  I snapped the photo below of 11R fairway at 1.35pm on Tuesday afternoon and you can still see the wheel marks in dew even though the sun had been out all day and the temperature was in the low 20's.  Further up the fairway near the players you can see much greener fairway grass that gets much more sunlight.

Dew still on the ground @ 1.35pm.

As mentioned last week a very busy golfing schedule over the next two weeks.  The Queensland senior amateur next week for three days followed the next week by the Vets week of golf means that our access to the courses is limited and restricted primarily to course set up only on the course being used for the event.  It's all been done before though and we welcome the challenge to present the courses as good as can be to the many visiting golfers.  

Friday, July 19, 2019

A very sincere thank you to those members who have gone out of their way to congratulate me on being awarded life membership of the Australian Superintendents Association.  It is indeed a great honour and I am humbled to have received it.  There is only one other Association life member and that is none other than Doug Robinson who was also the Superintendent here at Cool Tweed in the 1980's and has also done a significant amount of work over the past 25 years on the courses in construction.  I remember first meeting Doug in the early 1980's and as the then Association President he would send out correspondence with a return address in Banora Point which I had no idea of its location.  Fast forward nearly 40 years and here I am at Coolangatta Tweed and living in Banora Point!!

Back to the courses and some dirty rainy weather while I was on leave but that seems to happen to Assistant Simon every time I go away.  The weather this week has been anything but rainy with some amazing daytime temperatures for this time of year.  Yes the mornings have been cold but mid 20's daytime temperatures make up for all that.  There is still a little bit of leaf growth, particularly on the fairways and we were able to get them all liquid fertilised this week which might help them get a little more growth but the Iron and Manganese in the mix helps colour them up.  The greens, particularly the TifEagle West greens have lost their colour with the cold overnight temperatures sending soil temperatures down.  They too were fertilised this week but with more of a soil conditioner to help them survive the near dormancy they are now in.

A few frost patches around last Monday!!

Quite a bit of root pruning has now been carried out and if it stays dry we should start to see some results in favour of the playing areas very soon.  Not knowing where a lot of pipes and sprinkler control tubes go is an issue and unfortunately we hit some on the right side of 12R where you would have never thought they would be which meant some detective work in finding the leaks and then some sprinkler replacement.

Post root pruning.

A very busy month of golf coming up with a large number of tour / social groups visiting, Vets week of golf, Club Champs, Mixed 4Somes Champs, some pennant and the Pro Am.  There have been some course closures allocated to help us prepare the courses unhindered as that is when we are most productive and the crew are looking forward to the challenge of presenting the courses as good as the weather will allow us over the next 5 weeks.  Being able to work when the grass is dry is also a great help and results in a much better finished product.