Finally a good spell of weather! So much the topic of conversation among everyone recently, whether golfers or not, it has really lifted spirits getting some of the ‘smooth’ after so much of the ‘rough’.
From a greenkeepers point of view it’s no different, despite new challenges coming from the warm sunny days, we’d always take sunny over wet!
Rather than discussing anything specific this week, I’m just going to give a list of what we’ve been doing and what we’ve still got to do.
- Greens have been fertilised with an organic feed. This is the first of the year and although we’ve had to start to water recently the greens are in really good shape with the season in front of us.
- Tees are now looking great after several cuts and the grass is now used to the height of cut. I hope you are enjoying the new tees on Pennington’s and Metcalfe’s Ace too.
- More than half of the fairways have been cut down to summer height. They have a really good body of grass too, one positive from having had a long rest this winter.
- Most of the semi rough has been cut and is just about where we would want it.
- All long rough has received it’s spring cut except on Cottage Corner and Winney Bank, a great achievement from the team getting this mammoth task completed. Thanks to Dave Smelt too, for his great help with this!
- 39 bunkers have now been cleaned out, weeded, mown round and topped up with fresh sand.
- The driving range has been cut several times now and we have finally started ball collection using the tractor over hand picking, which saves an enormous amount of our resources. New targets are being prepared for the outfield and with new powertees just installed, the range is looking top notch.
- The area in front of Dickens Dilemma tee where we took turf to build bunkers has been prepared and seeded with wildflower. This is roped off now and GUR, so within a few weeks we should have a rather nice little feature on an already pretty hole.
Work to do
- Greens need a wetting agent applying and are still to top dress. Both of these tasks will be carried out over the next 2 weeks and once completed will end any significant works to the greens for some time.
- Tee banks are still a bit long on some holes but these will soon be back to normal.
- Fairways are still to get down to summer height across the course and also need a few more cuts to really ‘shine’ up.
- New bunkers are still to introduce to play and we hope to do so in the near future, but the 2 bunkers that collapsed due to the flooding, may take a while for us to get to repair them.
- The first tee path way is still to finish and we are still waiting on news of astro turf being delivered for it. Once we get news we will be able to complete this in no time.
- Newly planted areas of Gorse required weeds spraying off and will also need watering if the warm weather continues.
- Once we have the above tasks complete, then spraying of weeds across the course will begin. This is a monumental task though so will be something that will be ongoing throughout the summer. The worst areas will be done first though and with some luck you will see a huge improvement on previous years.
- The main project of 2018 is the construction of a new green on Rawcliffe. Using materials from the now decommissioned holes on Millennium, we will be building a new green to the right of the existing one. Then next winter the hole will be redesigned with new bunkering and tee positions, ready for the new hole to open early 2019.
Hope the sun continues to shine and there’s plenty of golf to be had for all to enjoy!