What a difference a week makes!

According to the Weather Channel, we just had the warmest average June temperature on record.  With temperatures reaching 92 degrees on the golf course last week, and no watering capabilities on the back 9 holes, I think it is pretty obvious why a new irrigation system is desperately needed.  The maintenance staff has devoted about 40% of the man hours allowed to apply water on the greens that do not have any irrigation yet.  This required three staff members 8.5 hours per day to accomplish.  Unfortunately, we do not have the capabilities to supplement watering on the tee boxes or fairways.  Some tee boxes lost their leaf blade, but many crowns of the grass plants are still alive.  Areas that are dead will receive aerification, seed, and topdressing sand to grow back in.

Some members have asked about the hydro seeding of holes 1, 7-9.  We will hydroseed these holes when irrigation is pressurized in the next several days.  Applying seed now would be gambling with the weather being able to keep the seed moist enough.  Seed will not germinate when temperatures are like they were the last couple of weeks.

We appreciate the patience on the practice areas at the driving range.  The Director of Golf, Duane Page and I made the split second decision to allow the construction crew to install these areas, while cleanup was being done on #7-9.  These two areas will be complete as we transition onto the back 9.  Irrigation construction on the back nine holes started on 6/30/15.  I feel really good about the time on these holes.  Only two holes on the back nine will have the 3-trench procedure (11 and 18).  Everywhere else will be a 2-trench process like #1.  Many holes on the back nine are dead ends as well.  This means the crew can install the hole and water can then be turned on immediately.  Also, we installed pipe ranging from 2.5″ all the way to 12″.  I’m very relieved that all the 12′, 10″, 8″ and almost all the 6″ is installed on our property.  Larger pipe is slower putting in due to the weight and the machines used to install.

Please excuse our new project underway on #3 tee boxes.  We have the ladies tee area complete and ask all golfers to tee from there until the other tees are laser leveled and sodded.  We will be doing tee enlargements on #4, 6, 16 & 18 ladies’ tee boxes.  Please excuse our dirt on those areas.  As well, remember that the front nine holes are growing in tender grass plants.  These areas will play as “ground under repair”.  While we strive to provide great playing conditions all the time, a major project like this sometimes shifts focus.  Most staff members are keeping the golf course maintained.  However, some must be involved in projects related to the irrigation install.  Thank you all for the patience; the end is in sight!

Logan H. Nesbitt, Golf Course Superintendent

Laurel Ridge Horizontal Logo CMYK