Course work is now revving up for the summer season.  The weather is helping.  Ground conditions are good - not too soft, not too hard, enabling an early outing for the new gravel bander.  Gavin has treated the area between the 7th tees and fairway and finished the walk-off area by the 9th green:  he is delighted with the machine’s performance, which fully lived up to expectations in both productivity and quality.  It operated perfectly even with one of the less powerful tractors.

Fairways have been cut almost to normal summer height.  The rough has been topped off to 1.75", slightly less than summer height.  The semi rough will be shaped in by the end of the month.  It’s too soon to lift preferred lies:  the last thing we want is to take them off and then have to put them on again. Weedkiller has been sprayed round the base of the trees.  The green aprons have been solid tined to help improve them.

The greens have been dressed, quite heavily, applying more than 2.5 tonnes per green.  They will be done again, probably twice, during the summer.  Dressing is not cheap:  currently it costs £57 a tonne - last year it was £50.   It’s been extensively brushed in, and a short burst with the sprinklers will wash it down into the surface.  The greens can’t be cut until the dressing is below the grass - it would blunt the cutter blades.  After a week to recover they will be quite deeply verticut (scarified) to pull out dead and decaying plant material.  It won’t be pretty but it needs doing to keep the greens healthy and firm them up; they will soon recover.

This week the focus will be on the bunkers.  The sand depth will be checked and topped up with an estimated 40 tonnes of sand.  A couple of bunkers need to be cleared out to sort their drains.

New man James has settled in well, unsurprisingly given his history.  Will has reported Covid positive; he’s barely symptomatic but staying away.  Social distancing within the team has been reinforced.

Alan Wood
20 March 2022


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