The early part of December was very cold with the ground being frozen solid and the daytime temperature rarely above 2oC. This all changed during the second week of the month with it becoming being very mild, warmer than average and at times particularly wet, especially so over the weekend 21st – 23rd when the culmination of prolonged heavy rain meant the Barry Burn burst its banks in a few areas causing large areas of standing water and for much debris to left deposited along its course. This period of heavy rain also meant the water table rose substantially meaning that the natural drainage of water across the courses, be it on turf or in bunkers, was severely affected.
The bulk of the work this month was continuing with the Winter Works Programs across the courses however the cold spell at the start of the month meant that the gorse management work commenced and the wet weather at the back end of the month meant that the bulk of our time was spent clearing flood water and tidying/repairing any resultant damage.
The greens were cut once and rolled twice during December and also received an application of fungicide and Iron Sulphate to prevent disease ingress. The approaches and surrounds received an application of Iron Sulphate.
From just before Christmas through to the New Year the bulk of the work involved removing water from the 10th, 11th and 17th holes by pumping and verti-draining after they suffered from flooding from the Barry Burn.
Winter Works
·        Removing slabs etc from alongside 1st tee and driving up-fill sand on to site
·        Mound in front of 4th tee lowered and re-turfed
·        Turfing of mounds to right and rear of 9th green completed
·        Preparation work to pathway at 8th hole
·        Preparation of Island at 17th including the installation of a new irrigation pipe network and the turfing of the RHS
·        Removal and turfing of another section of road along the right side of the 6th green
·        Revetting bunker at LHS 5th fairway and raising run-in
Gorse/Broom Removal
Gorse and Broom cutting took place at:
8th carry, 9th carry, RHS 14th carry (broom removal also), LHS 14th and LHS15th
The greens were cut once and rolled twice in December and were sprayed selectively for disease with fungicide.
Verti-draining took place on approaches and fairways with ½” tines whilst the tees and walkways were slit tined.
Winter Works
·        Turfing of 6th tee was completed
·        Bridge alterations at 3rd and 4th
·        Weeds and silt removed from burn at 3rd/4th
Gorse Management
Gorse cutting/removal took place at:
RHS 1st, LHS 6th, RHS 8th, RHS 9th, LHS 11th, next to 15th tee, in front of 16th tee (roots also removed), LHS 18th green and around various road edges/corners.
8mm solid tining on greens commenced and the 11th and 14th fairways were verti-drained.
Work commenced on and around the 4th green to re-contour the left side of the green down to the lake edge. The bulk of the beach type area within the confines of the lake was removed during this time with the sand being used to raise the low area on the approach.
Four bunkers were revetted during December – 2 at the 8th and 2 at the RHS of the 16th green.
Stuart Kerr, Andrew Pickard, Mark Reynolds and Stephen Sutherland attended a course in Basic Irrigation Design at Elmwood College on the 12th of the month.
Sandy Reid
Links Superintendent
8th January 2013