Golf Course Superintendent’s Update 6/15/18

Summer temperatures have arrived a little early to Waynesville.  The area is expecting highs in the mid-to-upper 80’s through most of next week.  It is nice to have this wonderful golfing weather, but this pattern means the start a tough season for the turf.  As a northern bred species, bentgrass prefers cooler temperatures.  While it is possible to grow bentgrass here, there are approximately 90 days in the heat of the summer that we must work to get the turf to survive until cooler temperatures arrive again in mid September.  Signage, cart rulings, stakes, ropes and traffic diverters are placed around the property to give the turf a great chance at survival.  Thank you for increased adherence to these rulings.

As many have seen, some turf decline has appeared on a few golf holes.  I was stumped by this when first noted last Thursday, so I called in an expert to view the damage with me.  After sending overnight samples to a disease lab in Raleigh, the test results came back negative for disease.  While that is a very good thing, the problem happened from the almost 19 inches of rain that we received from the middle of May until here recently.  Water moisture levels were reaching 60% in the sample plugs.  This much saturation was basically allowing no oxygen into the root zone of these areas, thus suffocating the grass plant.  After the conformation from the lab, crews aerified and seeded these areas on Monday and we have already seen improvement. Many courses in the area had similar damage.  It infuriates me that the course went from fantastic to now having some trouble areas, but, I greatly appreciate the helpful comments.  We will make every attempt to repair as many damaged areas as we can in the coming weeks.

I would like to wish a Happy Father’s Day to all fathers at LRCC and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Logan H. Nesbitt

Golf Course Superintendent’s Update 5/25/18

There are many projects happening around LRCC.  We continue to finish our mulch and pine needle applications.  This has been especially tough this year due to our work crews being delayed three weeks and the abundant rainfall.  We are working on each area when a free moment and Mother Nature allow.  With the abundant rain, clumping of the grass clippings has been a problem.  If one thing drives me crazy on a golf course, it is clumping of clippings.  Normally, afternoon mowing reduces this complication because clippings are dry.  However, with the evening rain showers, the grass is never really drying.  A turbine blower is being sent out daily, but the wet clippings make blowing extremely difficult.  Thank you for your patience with this issue.  Due to the course receiving so much rain and being so wet, I ask all golfers to please follow the cart path ruling for the day.  The sign signaling the daily ruling is located at the #1 white tee.  Driving where prohibited damages grass by turning, spinning, or simply compacting.  I know that it is tempting to drive across the fairways and think, “one cart wont hurt”.  If everyone had that thought, that’s 20-50 carts per day!

We are trying a new product for our cart path ends and walkways.  In years past, a coarse sand was used on these areas.  Teaming up with Green Mountain Golf, a Klingstone product will be tested that is applied over a more coarse stone.  We will be using this product on the path at #5 green and #14 greens walkway.  As well, a similar product will be applied to a bunker on #5 to test the benefits of washout reduction.

The culvert on #17 is set to be replaced hopefully next week.  Material is settling around the current pipe somehow and causing a slow collapse.  The other course culverts will be evaluated this year as well since they are all the same age. When this work starts, a cart path detour is possible for 1-2 days.

A new set of tee markers has been ordered and will be added to the fairways soon.  A few members had the idea of a forward tee location to assist play on some of the harder holes.  I have ordered a complete set of markers for this purpose.

Hopefully, everyone is happy with the course progress.  Being mentioned in the same sentence as Biltmore Forest CC and Balsam Mountain Preserve is an honor and confidence builder to my team.  I thank you for the encouraging words and hope you each have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!

Logan H. Nesbitt, Golf Course Superintendent

Golf Course Superintendent’s Update 5/19/18

Welcome to the 2018 golf season at Laurel Ridge Country Club!  The maintenance staff is very excited to provide a great golf course this year after a very successful 2017 season.  For the first time in my 14 year superintendent career, all maintenance staff members returned from the previous season.  With the need to hire eliminated, staff is already trained and familiar with each task and hole locations.

Crews accomplished many projects over the winter and we’re excited for golfers to experience these enhancements.  Some tasks are being wrapped up this week and others will be addressed in the coming weeks.  Some of these upcoming improvements include:

  • additional yardage markers will be added
  • bunker rake handles will be refinished
  • more 150 yard stakes will be placed
  • #9 ladies’ tee stairs will be replaced
  • #17 culvert will be fixed
  • mulching will be completed
  • brush piles will be burnt
  • new locking valve box lids are ordered

We hope everyone enjoys the gorgeous annuals that are currently being planted throughout the property.  We are blessed with a greenhouse on property and grew many flowers from seed this winter.  A small amount of money made our greenhouse full with beautiful plants.

We look forward to an exciting 2018 and seeing everyone around the club!

Logan Nesbitt, Golf Course Superintendent

2018 Youth Summer Sports & Activities Camps At Laurel Ridge

LRCC is excited to offer three week-long Summer Youth Sports & Activities Camps for ages 6-14.   Your child or grandchild will benefit from valuable lessons from our Tennis & Golf Pros plus many other activities such as swimming, arts & crafts, educational programs plus much more.  Days packed full of sports and learning activities will ensure a fun experience for all!

Camps are open to the public and space is limited.  Reserve your child’s space today or contact Mandy for details, info@laurelridgegolf.com or (828) 452-0545, ext. 131!  Camps run from 10 am-4 pm daily in the following weeks:

  • Camp I – June 25-29, 2018
  • Camp II – July 9-13, 2018
  • Camp III – July 23-27, 2018

Please click here to download the 2018 Youth Sports & Activities Camp Brochure & Registration.

Attention Golfers! Play Beautiful Laurel Ridge Country Club in the Great Smoky Mountains for only $49!

GolfWeek Magazine published, “Laurel Ridge is the yardstick by which all area golf courses are measured”.  Now you can play one of the premier mountain golf courses in WNC for only $49! This offer is available any day after 3 pm. Call for your tee time, 828-452-0545.

Golf Course Superintendent’s Update 11/3/17

I hope everyone is enjoying the beautiful color on all our trees.  We have had a very late leaf season due to above-average fall temperatures.  Many trees are simply turning from green to brown and the leafs fall off.

Our Hispanics finish their season at the club today.  They have been wonderful to work with and wonderful for the golf course.  Having the same trained guys back from 2016 was a major boost to start the 2017 season off quickly.  Our winter season staff will consist of two men on the course, our mechanic, and myself.  We will continue to clean up leafs and mow turf that is still growing.

My goal for the off season is to send out a monthly update, so please be looking for these.  My staff thanks each of you for a very successful 2017 golf season.

Logan H. Nesbitt, Golf Course Superintendent

WCU Golf Tournament Was A Success!

Thank you so much for hosting “The Mutt” Catamount Football Classic golf outing in October.  A great time was had by all our donors and fans!  We truly appreciate the time and effort you made to make the event a success!  The success of these golf outings in terms of fundraising dollars directly impact our Student-Athletes at WCU and the mission of the Catamount Club.

We loved being able to set up in the pavilion for registration and then dinner.  Everyone said the greens were in great shape and that they enjoyed the course.  They also loved the coffee, lunch and dinner!  Thanks again for all you do! ~Miffy Henley, Assistant Director, Catamount Club, WCU Athletics, 11/2/17

Beautiful Location!

“Beautiful location! The setting was perfect for a mountain wedding. I especially enjoyed watching the deer crossing the fairway while waiting for the ceremony to start.”~Jessica Erin 10/30/17

LRCC Tennis Pro Competes at World Cup Competition

LRCC Tennis Pro, Larry Turville, won the deciding #1 singles match against Austria to help the USA win the 65 & over Division, Britannia Cup in Lake Nona, FL recently. The USA also beat Argentina, Croatia, Great Britain, and Australia along the way to win the championships. There were in all 22 countries represented.

Larry represented the USA and Laurel Ridge very well! Congratulations to Larry on a very successful World Cup competition.

Golf Course Superintendent’s Update 10/20/17

According to the Park Service, this weekend will be the peak for leaf lookers on the Blue Ridge Parkway.  The foliage has been beautiful this fall.  Leaf drop is always a tough task for maintenance crews since leaves continue to fall after we have already completed morning tasks, necessitating cleaning the leaves off greens again after lunch.  Hopefully this has helped keep the putting surfaces clean for afternoon play.

Fairway aerification began this week, but the rental machine is having a few issues.  We hope to have a replacement Monday afternoon to continue this process next week.

The following tasks were performed this week:

  • Mowed greens 6 times
  • Mowed T,C,A twice
  • Mowed fairways twice
  • Mowed rough twice
  • Mowed clubhouse
  • Mowed DR twice
  • Raked bunkers twice
  • Changed pins 3 times
  • Interseeded clubhouse grounds
  • Added 2 additional sprinkler heads on #5
  • Partially aerified #5 and #12 fairways
  • Leaf cleanup
  • Started brush blading native areas

Have a wonderful, colorful weekend!

Logan H. Nesbitt, Golf Course Superintendent