Wednesday, February 29, 2012

What can I say haha

Spotted this on an American Super's site, had to laugh.To view a larger version click on the pic

Weeks Worklist

Ever wondered what we get up to in the last week before one of our major events ? Here's a look at this weeks work list.
Some good planning meant all the bunker edges, sprays and other time consuming work were all complete last week, leaving just the conditioning of the course this week. Remembering we still need to do manual water shifts on the back 9.
Monday 
Start B9 water shifts plus hoses and checks x 4 day
Move Holes / Markers
Mow Greens
Foliar Fert Greens
Spot water
Mow Tees and Aprons
Backlapp Tees Mower
Mow F9 Fwys
WB back putter
Bin Run
Start Rough laps mow
Water B9 Greens

Tuesday
Cont B9 water shifts plus hoses
Mow Greens x 2 no lap
Bunker Faces
Bunker Rake
Rough laps cont
Backlapp / check H.O.C Fairway Mower
Weed Front Entrance gardens remove agapanthus stalks
Edge all path edges
Whipper all wall ends, signs and banks
Paint spare Hole Cups
Water B9 Tees

Wednesday
Move Holes / Markers
Mow Greens x 1 Lap
Mow Tees / Aprons
Mow B9 Fwys, top lawn and Practice tee / Fwy
Rough Laps Con''t plus carries
Backlapp Greens Mower / Adjust (Lower H.O.C. 0.3mm)
Service Machine
Mow Greens P.M x 1 lap
Water Greens

Thursday
Start B9 water shift 2nd pass no hoses ( to be complete by 9pm)
Mow Geens x 2 no lap
Bunker Faces 
Bunker Rake
Spray 11th and 15th Greens (protectant)
Bin Run
Mow Surrounds G
Mow F9 Fairways
Commence Debris clean off (Kubota)
Mow Back Putter
Backlapp W/behind mower
Water Tees

Friday - Shotgun At 11am
Water Greens spot
Move Holes / Markers (swap Cups)
Mow Greens x 2 Lap
Bunker Faces
Bunker Rake
Mow B9 Fwys
Con't Debris clean off
Mow Tees / Aprons
Mow Surrounds T
OFF COURSE BY 11.30
Fit new bed knives Tees Mower
Backlapp in and adjust H.O.C to green heights
Backlapp Greens Mower check adjustments.
Clean / Paint removed cups
COURSE WORK RECOMMENCE 5PM
Kubota clean up debris
Finish B9 fwy mow if not complete 
Debris clean out Bunkers and Broom Faces
Mow Greens x 1 test Tees mower
Water Run Greens if req
Course Inspect for added work where req

Saturday and Sunday Morning each Day
Move Holes / Markers
Mow Greens x 1 Tees mower
Mow Greens x 1 Greens Mower plus Lap
Rake Bunkers
Debris Clean up

Saturday and Sunday Afternoon
Debris clean out Bunkers
Broom Faces
Debris Clean off Course
Greens Spot water / water if req.

I haven't included other work including admin work such as the Reno organisation, water auditing etc or the other equipment maintenance daily or on the run.
As you can see a pretty hectic week for the 4 of us and why it is impossible to do this amount of conditioning on a weekly basis. 
Mother nature can throw a spanner in the works or any number of other variables which can happen from time to time in which case we just add it to the list. We have previously attended other works in the lead up to this week so that we have the whole week to focus solely on course presentation.

Just thought you might be interested in why there is a difference between the course presentation on a major weekend compared to that of our week to week presentation, which we still try to set as high a standard as possible within time and budget.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Weeks Update

This week we have managed to complete all our base maintenance and course preparations for the Capel Classic as planned. This has included fertilising Tees and Fairways, spoonfeeding the greens as discussed previously, bunker edges trimmed and edged, Mowers backlapped (sharpened) and also some post emergent control of crab grass in the greens on top of our normal maintenance practices and back 9 manual irrigation.
Freshly Edged Bunker
  I might have made a judgement error in spraying out the crab grass before the Classic with the crab grass now turning black as the chemical starts to work, leaving an unsightly appearance on some greens, but with the greens renovations the week after the classic I wanted to get on top of this weed before it goes to seed causing more dramas in future.
A dying Crab grass
In an effort to clean the appearance up we will be grooming the greens tomorrow, this time not so much for speed or to thin the Bent rather to thin the crab grass and "mask" some of the visual impact it is having. It is only visual and not impacting on ball roll, with a light groom and dust in minimising any problems that may arise.
With just on a week to go to the Scott Park Homes Capel Classic we are well positioned to have the course in great condition once more to reflect the importance of the event. With $5000 of prizes up for grabs another big field is expected over the 2 days of the classic as well as the Shotgun event on the Friday.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

February Work

180 ladies can't be wrong.........can they ?
We have had some fantastic feedback about the course conditioning for the Summer Cup, by all means a very successful preparation for this event.
Just goes to show only a green keeper can please and satisfy this many women at once. ha ha

So where do we go from here, we only have 3 weeks before the next club major event, the 2 day Capel Classic sponsored by Scott Park Homes, our goals for this event are the same as for the Cup, to present the course in the most positive fashion possible with a focus on turf quality and conditioning, and once again peaking the greens to run true and smooth with a little extra pace.
We are going to do this by backing off the greens a touch for the next week or so, not much, not even 1/2 mm, (it is amazing what just a slight increase in height can do to turf health in a short space of time), before ramping them up again for the Classic. A decision to verti cut or lightly groom will be made by the end of the week and a possible light dust in for next Monday in order to achieve this.


During the "rest" period we will be applying granular gypsum to help them along, we will continue the spoon feeding fertiliser program which has held us in good shape since the commencement of the hot weather, providing .028kg N per 100m2 weekly to sustain healthy but not excessive growth, along with some seaweed extract and potassium for strength to help with combating the stresses we place on the greens and the temperature stress which have thank fully cooled to around 31 degrees.

The tees will be given a granular feed, to assist in divot recovery and the fairways will be given a foliar feed next week, the reason for this is we do not want to cause excessive growth in the fairways which means more time consuming mowing than we are already doing, but we still want some growth and colour. The other reason is the fairways will be granular fertilised  late March as an end of season fertilisation to get them through winter. 
Of course the back 9 manual irrigation system will be in full operation and the hoses out once more, eating into the available course maintenance time. 
Other behind the scenes work including machine maintenance and a bit of paper work, organising the upcoming March greens renovations, normal course grooming and set up, will keep us busy over the next week before the focus returns to groom groom groom the course including the dreaded bunker edges. 

Other work we will  be taking the opportunity to do is apply some post emergent crab grass control, which tho much less in the greens than previous years still presents a huge problem in some greens more than others.
crab grass
 It is also getting time to start applying pre emergent winter grass control and we are heading towards doing that as well, tho we are waiting for the temperatures to drop a little more before we do. 
Not a bad workload for just the 4 us on staff. 

A reminder to members...Greens renovations on the 10th and 11th of March, we desperately need volunteers to assist in the clean up and removal of cores, many hands make light work and hopefully we will have another great turn out like previous years.

Friday, February 10, 2012

New Greensmower

On Thursday we took delivery of our new greensmower as part of our equipment turnover program, the new mower from John Deere is similar to our existing greens mower, (which now will cut tees and the tee mower traded), but has revamped cutting heads which will save time and labour when making adjustments to the quality of cut and height of cut.

The older cutting heads required adjustments to 12 locations for height of cut and another 12 for quality of cut, a very time consuming task done regularly and was very open to user mistake by over adjustment, the new heads only require adjustment to 3 locations and all but eliminates user mistakes.
What this means for us, is less down time of machine and staff and better, more precise adjustments, what this means to you, our members is better conditions both through more accurate adjustments and more on course time for staff instead of in the shed adjusting the mower.

We are lucky to have a supportive membership and management that recognise providing decent equipment is one aspect to providing a decent golf course.

SUMMER CUP

The new flags are out, the cups are painted and the course striped up
                                                                                                                                                                   
It must be time for the Associates major event of the year and the first major event of the year for the club, yes the 2 day Summer Cup has arrived!

The past 4 weeks have been all about peaking the course in condition for this event with a focus on surface quality from Tees and Fwys to Bunkers and Greens and has involved allot of hard work and extra hours, specially with making sure the back 9 Fairways didn't suffer with our manual system of turf valves and extra time and effort spent using hoses to irrigate the gaps of no coverage, my thanks to all the staff for their incredible hard work over the past few weeks, in particular this week to get the course the way it is looking and playing at the moment. The course as it stands tonight at 9pm after doing some more clean up is a credit to them.

Our task has been made all the more difficult with seasonal winds up to 50km/hr, blowing debris over the course, with no means to clear them besides our trusty Kubota outfront mower, it can be a very frustrating, time consuming task trying to keep the course presentable under those conditions, to the staffs credit they stuck at it and thankfully tonight it is calmer and with a few more hours in the morning the final clearing will be complete.
 








As for the greens, the goal was to peak them for the summer cup, in healthy condition and increase speeds to 11ft,  they were at 10.5ft this morning after a water and only a single cut and in healthy condition, with little water out tomorrow and double cut they will definitely be hitting the mark if not more, so yes your hearing a very happy Super after all the plans and work come together with the challenges we have faced.



Now I realise, my last comment there about green speed contradicts what I wrote previously, so just to clear that up - - We can sustain increasing green speeds and all that entails for short periods or for special events during Summer, i.e. We aim to peak the greens specially for that event and involves a substantial increase in input of costs through increased turf product use and  labour time, something we can not sustain over a longer period during the hotter months without major risk of adverse effects to turf health or over extending our budget.

In any case enough of the trumpet blowing, my thanks again to our dedicated staff for all their hard work and not forgetting our regular volunteers Syd, who today spent the most part cleaning all the signs and markers and Ned who spent some time cleaning up branches that were down from the wind, also Ben for helping as usual with the clean up and watering. Thanks guys your efforts, they are very appreciated.

Good luck to all the ladies, happy golfing and we hope you enjoy the conditions.

Trial Dust In / green speeds

I have been meaning to update the blog on a few issues over the past week and a half but have been incredibly busy with the preps for the Summer Cup and the extra work load that creates as well as still taking the heat precautions and extra labor hours that involves, my apologies and will now try to bring everything up to date.
To save one very long post where you look, yawn and skip it, I might try to do a few smaller ones instead....Key word is TRY. 

Dust In Program
Initial results from the dust in program are inconclusive at the moment due to the intervention we were forced to make during the extreme heat period we had of temps on course ranging 38 to 42 degrees, and they are still around the 35 mark,  those interventions do cause the greens to be slower, with this in mind, whilst I have some results in, I prefer to wait another month before detailing them.

Stimp meter testing
 I would like to take this opportunity to reinforce the message given by previous supers, including myself over the few years I have been here, which is..........................Summer green speeds will always be slower than other times of the year for well documented reasons, ( I might post those reasons separately at a later date).  Regardless of the results of the trial, green speeds will still be slower,  our aim with this is to find a suitable compromise between members desired green speeds in summer and the greens health agronomically.
We are fortunate, the vast majority of members understand the reasons this.