LINKS SUPERINTENDENT REPORT FOR APRIL 2013
The first half April continued where March left off with below average daytime temperatures (9oC) and plenty of strong, cold easterly winds. The second half of the month improved slightly with temperatures increasing (11oC) and some welcome rainfall (on 6 days).
WORK ON THE LINKS
Due to limited growth the targets for April month are to stimulate growth where possible (greens and newly laid turf especially) by fertilising and top dressing and to get the greens as smooth and consistent as possible coming out of the winter via top dressing, brushing, rolling and cutting when necessary.
The work to replace the control network for our irrigation system continued although not without few a few problems resulting in the installation of new cabling in many places. This work is expected to continue through May although any disruption on the courses will be minimal.
The greens received a home mixed granular fertiliser once soil temperatures had risen suitably; they also received their monthly applications of Wetting Agent and Seaweed.
Towards the end of the month Hydro-ject work commenced where by water is injected into the soil profile. This is a superb method of aeration as it is non-disruptive to the surface yet creates small channels in the soil profile which helps provide deeper rooting. Seaweed is normally also injected with the water which again is great for stimulating root growth.
· Approaches and surrounds receive an application of wetting agent, fertiliser and sulphate of iron
· Tees and weak/trafficked areas all received granular fertiliser as required and all new turf received a liquid application of fertiliser
· Minor turf repairs to winter damaged areas and rabbit scrapes were carried out as required
· Newly formed tight turf to rear right of 9th green was cored, top-dressed and fed
Other work included:
Cleaning weed from burn; adding slabs under gravel in ditch alongside 9th/12th and 10th tee; installing slabs alongside current ones on path up to practice nets; installing old astro-turf at entrances through fence and alongside grass clipping bays; strimming mounds and sea lyme as required.
The monthly program of wetting agent and seaweed commenced at the start of the month then were fed with a compound fertiliser and top dressed later in the month.
· Approaches received an application of wetting agent
· New turf and the low areas of the 3rd & 4th fairways were top dressed
· Young broom in the heather areas of holes 10, 11, 12 & 14 was cut
· Newly turfed traffic routes had rubber crumb applied to surface to help improve wear tolerance
· Fairways brushed prior to their first cut
· Trafficked rough between 2 & 4 was verti-drained
· The astro-turf mat in front of the 3rd tee was removed and turfed over whilst the silt in the neighbouring hollow was removed prior to the area being oversown
· Minor turf patching took place on the 3rd and 11th holes
The green received an application of wetting agent and seaweed and were also top dressed.
· Tees and new turf was top dressed
· Selective feed on tee’s and traffic routes
· Fairways brushed prior to first cut
· Minor turf repairs as required
· Sand from strong easterly winds blown from beach was removed from tented village area to left of 1st hole
· Assisting on Championship Course with Irrigation update
New turf on current 12th (new 10th) hole was fed and top dressed in preparation for its full opening in May. Once opened there will be GUR on both sides of the hole where the seeded areas still have to develop.
All the seeded areas on the new 11th and 12th holes were fed with a controlled release fertiliser early in the month to aid development. The greens and fairway received their first cut and were over seeded where required.
A light application of Glyphosate (a systemic total weedkiller) was made to the majority of the new 12th fairway in a bid to control the ingress of annual meadow grass as it is an undesirable grass especially on new turf.
Three quarters of the turf nursery alongside the contractor’s compound was turfed with commercial turf.
As we are usually waiting for the grass to grow and with it being the start of the staff holiday entitlement for the year (they never take them at the start!), April is a good month for providing training for the greenstaff. This month we had men receiving training in/on:
· Abrasive wheel and Stone cutter
· Fire Extinguisher use
I also arranged for Grant Moir, the R&A’s Director of rules and Course Set-up, to conduct a presentation to the staff on course set-up and on ruling issues that we should be aware of whilst managing the golf courses.
3rd May 2013