Course open, winter rules, preferred lies.

This report is a day early due to temporary upcoming absence.  Gavin is on holiday this week, leaving Tony in charge - with a full ‘to do’ list!  

 The tees were verti-drained on Monday, as planned, although there was a fairly heavy frost which prevented machinery getting on the course for a couple of hours. 

It’s been full-on bunkers since then.  We had a load of turf delivered on Tuesday which has to be laid quite quickly - it does not survive rolled up for very long.  We have enough to do the bunkers on 1 and 2 (4 in all) as planned.  It’s going down well.  We now have to wait until it roots firmly through to the earth beneath - probably February/March next year - before we can finally shape up and  add sand.

Members will have noticed that several of the rebuilt bunkers have had turf laid inside them.  This is recycled material which was stripped off from where we dug new bunkers.  It will be treated with glyphosate to kill it and create a fibrous layer. This is the traditional way to separate the clay foundation from overlying sand.  Heavy foot traffic on ageing sand mixes it in to wet clay, making it more plastic and gradually extrude up through the sand to the surface - it’s our chronic bunker issue.  

The turf separation will rot over time, unsurprisingly, and ultimately fail.  There are synthetic barriers, ranging from rubber crumb matting to cement-like composites, but they all seem to have significant drawbacks in use and are very costly, so we’ve decided to stay with history until the alternatives are better developed - and affordable.

 There has been no mowing thus far this week, but assuming we finish turfing today then Friday is for cutting grass.  Having played this morning I can’t say that the lack of cutting was very noticeable.

 Alan