Welcome to my blog!
It is my intention to give the readers a better understanding of what we do to maintain The Farms Country Club's 18 hole championship golf course and grounds.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Baby Turkeys Wandering The Course

I have had several requests lately for some pictures of the baby turkeys on the course. I finally saw them this morning. Here are a few pics...

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Memorial Day Weekend Quickly Approaches!

The Farms CC's maintenance staff is working hard to have all areas looking sharp for the weekend festivities! Here are a few pictures from today.

Robins Fledge The Nest!

Didn't take too long for the chicks to mature. As of this morning, two of the three Robin chicks had left the nest. That left this lone chick...

Friday, May 21, 2010

Spring Divot Day Has Record Turnout!

Forty plus members turned out this morning with one thing in mind... Fill all the divots!
That they did, and in a record one hour and fifteen minutes!
Golf chairman, Jim McMahon Sr., started this event several years ago and has never looked back. Green and Grounds chairman, Barry Burke, has also stepped up to help Jim keep the event a smashing success!
I want to thank every club leader, staff member and participant for donating their valuable time and outstanding effort towards this worthy event.

Help these dedicated members in their quest for outstanding course conditions...
Please fill your divots on tees and fairways (not in first cut or rough), fix your ballmarks and rake your bunkers. It is every golfers responsibility.

Talk about divots?

Jim McMahon Sr. and Barry Burke take a break for this photo op.

Baby Robin In Nest Under Clubhouse Deck!

This nest passes within a few feet of most of our members every day. The robins don't seem to mind.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Flowers Arriving at The Farms CC!

Annual flowers are arriving and being planted. We expect to have all the plantings at clubhouse areas completed by the end of next week.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

USGA Green Section Report For May

USGA Green Section Director, Dave Otis, has posted his May report for the Northeast region. I have copied and pasted it below. You can also find this report and an archive of previous reports, by visiting the link section of this blog.
I've posted this because much of his report covers things we are seeing at The Farms CC.
1) Bentgrass off color due to weather and/or mechanical injury (note newer tees).
2) Cool season brown patch (especially on practice green)... Don't worry, this disease will not negatively effect the turf health, only aesthetics.
3) Bentgrass and Poa not growing evenly yet (note all collars)
4) Poa seadhead management has worked well for us and the greens have been great this spring!

Here is Dave's Report...

What Month Is It Anyway?
By David Oatis, Director USGA Green Section
May 11, 2010

The weather always seems to jump around some in the spring, and it certainly is doing that this year! Long johns have been traded for sun block and vice versa a couple of times already this year, and that always makes for an interesting start to the season. Golfers have been out in droves on many courses, and their early start has made it challenging to get the last of the spring cleanup accomplished. Despite the unseasonably warm temperatures we have experienced at times, there have been plenty of cold snaps, and some areas still are experiencing some frost. Playing conditions in the Northeast Region probably won’t round into peak form for a few more weeks.

When golfers experience a few warm days, they start to expect better playing conditions. A few warm days followed by cold weather, and possibly frost, gives golfers the perception that things should be growing, but the annual bluegrass and the bentgrasses won’t grow consistently under these conditions. Here are a few things you can expect for the next couple of weeks:

Bentgrass is very prone to mechanical injury during the spring season, and even normal mowing and rolling operations may cause visible injury to bentgrass while temperatures remain cool.
With sporadic cool periods and even a few frosts, certain bentgrass cultivars become severely discolored. It may look like a disease, but more often than not, the discoloration is just a result of the cool temperatures, possibly combined with some mechanical injury.
Poa/bent putting greens will remain somewhat bumpy until the growth of the two species evens out, and this won’t happen until we experience consistently warm temperatures. For warmer, more southerly areas, this may be occurring right now. For cooler areas, this may not occur for another month.
Regardless of how effective your seed head suppression program worked, a few seed heads, (maybe quite a few) often pop up, and these will contribute to the bumpy conditions.
We haven’t seen any Annual Bluegrass Weevil damage yet, but it is just around the corner. Plan on the first weevil damage to begin appearing in the next two weeks or so.
Cool season brown patch and brown ring patch both may be active now, but as conditions continue to warm (especially if it is dry) cool season brown patch will fade away. The two are difficult to distinguish between, and since the conditions that favor each are similar and overlap, be sure to get a laboratory diagnosis.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Snapping Turtle Heads Across #5 Fairway

This snapping turtle decided to make its move across #5 fairway before the first players in the Founder's Cup tournament came through.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Practice Green Opens!

The practice green is open for play! It won't be long before the putting surface will play as well as the rest of our greens. It is important for us to continue the heightened maintenance to achieve our duel goals of health and playability. I hope you enjoy the improvements!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Flowering Dogwood Snaps In Half In Storm!

A Flowering Dogwood tree on hole #16 snapped in half during the wind storm on Sunday. Further inspection revealed that the interior of the tree was rotted throughout. The tree was located on the left side of the hole adjacent to the cart path.

Friday, May 7, 2010

When Will The Practice Green Open?

My goal is to have the practice green open early next week!

From a health stand-point, the green is recovering very nicely. From a playability stand-point, it will take a while for the surface to play like the other eighteen greens. We are topdressing the green aggressively to smooth the surface. We continue to overseed small bare spots. The height of cut is being lowered slowly so we do not cause any scalping damage. Scalping damage is the biggest concern at this point. This type of mechanical damage would set back recovery considerably.

Our early season patience will ensure a much improved practice green for the rest of this year and years to come.

Lightning Strikes White Pine On Hole #3

Lightning struck a white pine on hole #3 Tuesday of this week. The extent of the damage to the tree will be assessed over the course of the season. We have seen trees survive this type of damage, so we are hopeful it will recover.
More importantly is understanding how dangerous lightning can be to anyone on the course. It is imperative that players leave the course immediately when the horns sound!
The following picture of the stricken tree shows what a deadly force lightning can be. SAFETY FIRST!!!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Topdressing Greens Has Many Benefits!

The light topdressing of greens has many benefits. It helps to smooth the putting surface, increase green speed, reduce disease infections and reduce thatch accumulation. We try to topdress greens weekly or bi-weekly early in the season and only periodically during the summer months when turfgrass becomes more stressed. The greens still putt nicely after the light application of sand. The following videos show the equipment used to spread the fine coat of topdressing sand.