Only 3 mm of rain this week, but heavy dews have kept the greens quite soft.   They are switched first thing to clear both dew and worm casts and to discourage fungal disease.  The team start at first light and follow a sequence that should clear the 1st by 07:30 and then keep ahead of play but as the days shorten it does becomes more difficult to stay ahead of fast movers.  We had an issue last weekend where some early fast moving starters caught up with the greens staff and found themselves playing on unswitched greens. 

This week tees have been verticut, dressed and fertilised - that’s them for this year.  Greens have had to be sprayed with a mixture of anti-fungal agents to deal with fusarium and the sinisterly named anthracnose (aka basal rot or foliar blight).  It looks a bit like fusarium and needs prompt attention.  When the fungicide has taken effect the greens will be fertilised to set them up for the winter.  Soil temperature has dropped markedly and growth is quite slow.

Although it has been quite a dry week the course surface is quite soft and ‘mud balls’ are appearing.  We will therefore instigate Preferred Lies (NOT Winter Rules) from Tuesday October 19.  The week is forecast showery and Preferred Lies were inevitable sooner or later.

We have an important County event from 26 to 28 October.  The Four Counties Boys match is played between Cheshire, Lancashire, Notts and combined Shropshire and Herefordshire.  It has been twice delayed by Covid, initially from 2020 then again from this spring.  

We need the course to look its best - County golf is part of our strategy to promote Eaton - and we need members’ help.  Divots are again prominent, despite a divotting exercise 3 weeks ago.  Some of the marks are large and deep:  it’s hard to believe the perpetrator would not realise what has been done and with a large and very visible clod of turf a metre or two ahead of the mark it’s even harder to believe it’s not been noticed.  The vast majority of play at Eaton involves our own members; is it too much to ask that they show some pride in their course?

Very similar comments apply to pitch marks on the greens, which despite the low rainfall are quite soft at the surface and mark up easily.  It would be much appreciated if players could try to repair marks - their own and one other. 

Alan Wood 

17 October 2021                                                                                                                                                                                                         



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