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.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Saturated Solutions LLC Demonstrates Imants Tree Root Pruner

Roots from trees are always competing with turf roots for nutrients and water. One way to combat the problem is by root pruning the trees. By cutting tree roots near the drip line of the tree we can improve weakened turf without hurting the trees.
Greg Moore from Saturated Solutions LLC provided us with a demonstration of the Imants Root Pruner yesterday. The machine boasts a depth of cut at nine to ten inches. Here at The Farms CC we have very rocky soils and found we could safely only reach a depth of six inches without damaging the equipment. It was tested near greens #10, #13 and #15. We tested it quickly on the right side of #15 fairway but the excessively rocky soil proved too much and we bent two blades.
The test will be if we see improvement in the turf to the rear of ten green, the right of thirteen green and the right of fifteen green.

Rocky Area on Hole #15 Bends Blades

Greg Moore from Saturated Solutions LLC

Under the cover showing the heavy duty blades

Blades cut two slices at six a inch depth

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Etiquette Reminders! Fixing Ballmarks and Filling Divots!

It's time for a couple of important etiquette reminders. The top two are fixing ballmarks and filling divots. They are especially important because they not only improve the turf from a health perspective but directly effect a players round of golf. No one wants to find their ball in an unfilled divot or have a putt bounce off line due to an unrepaired ballmark.
Divot mix is provided on every tee and cart. Walkers are also provided with mix at the proshop or as they head out to the first hole. We work hard to prepare a special mix for filling divots and it is important that it gets used up so we can refresh it constantly. Remember, we only fill divots on tees and fairways. Replace your divots in the rough and first cut.
The USGA has provided players with a series of informational videos under the label of "Fore the Golfer". Below is a video about fixing ballmarks correctly. Please enjoy and remember to fix your ballmark and at least one other while you are on the green.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Demo Days!

No, I don't mean Callaway or Titleist. I'm referring to demonstrating golf course maintenance equipment. There is only one way to tell how a piece of maintenance equipment will perform on our course. Contact the equipment vendor and set up a demonstration here at The Farms.
Golf course maintenance equipment is not cheap and we must thoroughly investigate all aspects of its ability to perform the task required, how well it is built and the service record of the company that distributes it.
Last week we tested an air injection aerifyer which fractures the sub-soil at depths from five to twelve inches. The Air 2 G2 was used on the practice green at a depth of seven to eight inches. The concept of this machine is interesting because it is supposed to provide lateral fracturing of the sub-soil which improves oxygen, relieves compaction and improves drainage without any surface disruption. If you didn't see us operating the Air 2 G2 you wouldn't have known we were there. We even flooded a spot and you could see the air bubbles rising through the puddle. The puddle dissipated fairly quickly.

Today we tested the VC 60 verticutter made by First Products on #8 tee & fairway and #18 tee. We are constantly battling excessive thatch on many tees and fairways. Jim Skorulski, our USGA Northeast Regional Agronomist, recommended we give this a try. I was very impressed! It cut clean lines, removed a lot of thatch and made tight turns with ease without tearing. Even where we went in two directions. Did I mention it was FAST? After the demo we just blow off the material it generated and mow. We will also perform a light topdressing to further aid in thatch reduction.


Monday, June 8, 2015

Work Continues on Lateral Hazard on Hole #9

We are continuing to improve the lateral hazard on hole #9. We have created a trench to confine the draining water and dug a small sediment pit before the outlet. We are continuing brush removal to improve the golfers' ability to find golf balls and will be seeding the disturbed areas today.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Pay Attention to Detail

We are finally catching up on some of our major Spring maintenance practices. It is time to pay attention to detail! You will begin to notice little things like weeds disappearing, string trimming of trees, stairs and curbs, landscape planting maintenance, etc.
We are doing a bit of "house - cleaning" on the right side of hole #9. The lateral hazards lack definition so we are clearing brush and cutting back the tall grass. We will be able to better mark the areas and players will have an easier time finding their ball.
Using small track hoe to remove some of the larger wild rose bushes
It finally feels like Spring! May was the hottest on record and we were near five inches behind on precipitation. Thankfully we received 3.6 inches of rain early this week. We needed it!
The greens are finally growing and we will be topdressing them lightly next week to smooth them out a bit. Before you know it, it will be June twenty-first, the first day of summer!