LINKS SUPERINTENDENT’S REPORT FOR OCTOBER 2011
October was a typical month with close to normal average noon temperatures (12.5° C) and a little lower than normal rainfall ((53 mm). Winds were predominantly westerly, light to fresh, with cloud cover prevalent throughout the month.
WORK ON THE LINKS
Greens, green surrounds along with winter greens were top dressed early in the month following verti-cutting. The rear section of certain greens received further dressing after solid tining. Fairways sand top dressed during the month included 6th, 12th and 18th, the turf nurseries and Public Putting Green. Tees on the 5th, 6th, 11th, 12th and 13th holes were top dressed following aeration while greens received a second top dressing. On the last day of the month, the 9th green was top dressed to fill 6” deep hollow tine holes.
A good deal of turf aeration work was carried out during the month including cross tine aeration on fairways and greens followed by rolling. Tees were slit tined as were roughs and selected tees including “Hogan’s” which were also hollow tined along with certain walkways and tracks. A start was made to greens verti draining with medium heave setting using
8 mm solid tines on the last day of the month
Minor Turf Repirs
Turf repairs involved “heading –out” divot scars on winter green areas as well as a number of tees as required.
The relatively mild conditions aided some late season growth and greens were mown four times per week generally and tolled as required. The arranged programme of cutting back rough around the course was carried out at a height setting of 3” – 4” on the rough cutting machines.
Certain weaker and or heavier trafficked areas on greens were verti-seeded with a fescue / bent seed mix as were some areas on green surrounds and including the 18th tee. A rectangular area of rough behind the 16th green running down to the burn was scarified and cut prior to disc overseeding in two directions with an ecology seed mix comprising of sweet vernal, sheep’s fescue, red fescue and wavy hair grass cultivars as agreed with
Bob Taylor and Richard Windows, S. T. R. I. This mixture was similarly oversown in weaker rough areas to the left hand side of the 18th hole and the right hand side of the 14th hole.
An autumn fertiliser (3-10-5 + seaweed and iron sulphate) was applied to greens and approaches in the first half of the month. Autumn fertiliser (2-0-10 +iron) was applied to teeing grounds and some weaker fairway areas.
Imlay Bridge – 10th Hole
Work commenced on this new stone bridge on the 18th of the month. Progress has been hampered by lack of stone more recently, however the raising of the burn walling has been achieved and one side of the bridge is complete.
Bridge Repairs – Ditches
The wide bridge crossing Jockie’s ditch to the left hand side on the 3rd hole over to the 4th tee was rebuilt with new timbers. The bridge in front of the 10th white tee was moved to a more appropriate position.
An iron sulphate dressing was applied to worm casts and mossy tees as required.
Greens were sprayed with a preventative fungicide towards the end of the month.
Other work carried out included sweeping pine needles – 9th fairway, ditch bank repair to the left of the 10th tee, loosening bunker floors and shaping sand in bunkers, raising sprinklers, and turf switch repairs.
Winter works got underway on the last day of the month with turf cutting on the 7th fairway and setting aside reusable material. A start was made to bunker revetments on the right hand side of the 2nd hole and the left hand side of the 14th hole.
Graden / Overseeding – 3rd Green
The 3rd green was scarified with the Graden machine followed by overseeding and top dressing early in the month. This machine was also used to scarify a selection of teeing grounds.
Turf repairs during the month involved re-turfing beneath the replaced protection fence at the 10th tee and divot scars were plugged on winter greens and the 8th and 14th tees.
Greens were top dressed near the middle of the month.
Greens were sprayed with a preventive fungicide during the month.
Turf Wetting Agent
Greens received their monthly application of wetting agent (Revolution) with liquid seaweed added.
Autumn fertiliser (2-0-10) was applied to teeing grounds and winter greens, whilst winter traffic areas were treated with a slightly different analysis (5-5-11).
Teeing grounds were hollow tined along with the re-turfed area on the 13th fairway. Walkways were slit-tined whilst verti-draining was carried out on the 9th approach, walkway to the 12th tee and low sections on the 4th and 12th fairways. Deep hollow-tining was carried out to the flood prone areas on the 7th, 8th 11th and 18th fairways along with the rear of the 15th green and 16th approach. A section across the front of the low lying 8th green was treated also. All tined areas were subsequently top dressed.
Other work carried out during the month included shaping bunkers, trimming round sprinklers, rolling greens, sweeping pine needles from the 5th, 3rd and 16th greens, tidying maintenance sheds and driving sand to the yard.
Buddon Links Course
Greens were pencil-tined with 8mm tines early in the month as were green approaches. Tees were verti-drained followed by slit-tining later in the month. Verti-draining was also carried out to fairways and walkways.
Greens were sprayed with a preventative fungicide early in the month as per the other courses.
Greens received an autumn fertiliser as did green approaches and teeing grounds.
Ditch clearance work commenced in October involving the ditch to the left of the 7th hole which is scheduled for piped extension southwards to the 10th green approach. Excavation also took place in the ditch running parallel to the 8th hole.
Greens were mown approximately three times per week and rolled as required during October whilst certain roughs around the course were cut at a 4” mower setting.
Practice Tee – Artificial Turf Installation
Preparatory work for this installation involved turf and topsoil removal within a strip just over 12 feet wide the full length of the top tier. Wooden framework was installed as required and the area within filled with road metal and compacted to form the solid even base for the tee turf matting. The area was blinded with quarry dust to provide a smooth finish. The mat installation took place on Friday 11 November.
Other work carried out during the month included seed divotting the 2nd tee following Dunhill Practice, bunker maintenance, blowing debris from greens and tees, and sweeping leaves from the 7th fairway.
A trial was carried out by way of cutting in heather seed using a disc seeder on the perimeters of several existing heather patches on the Championship Course.
Broom was strimmed in heather areas on the 7th and 8th holes of the Burnside Course whilst a number of dead or damaged trees previously marked for felling were removed from the 6th, 7th ,16th triangle.
On the Buddon Course, broom and scrub growth was removed from the ditch banks and base running down the 8th hole while gorse was removed from the ditch to the rear of the 6th green. Heather seed collection was realised from topping heather banks on the 11th, 15th and 16th holes. The spoil heap to the west end of the Links was tidied and several skips were uplifted mainly filled with grass cuttings.
Irrigation System Storage Tank
The old (1985) water storage tank at South America was emptied and dismantled towards the end of the month as scheduled being in an unsafe and corroded condition. The concrete base was also removed and associated pipework uncovered.
Mr C Chalmers is arranging to come and reconnect the larger storage tank to the 8” pipework going into the pump house.
John S Philp