Monday, January 18th, 2010

Last week's weather seemed more like the end of February than the middle of January. We will take it though. After all of that cold weather, temps in the 50's have given the greens a boost. We are still mowing on Tuesday's and Friday's and getting a fair amount of grass. We just fertilized them Thursday and gave them a tenth of a pound of nitrogen along with the Redox formula. We have stuck to the schedule and I believe it has really paid dividends. The greens are as nice as I have ever seen them for this time of year regardless of the harsh weather we had in December. Mike crunched some numbers last week and found that we only applied 3.6 pounds of nitrogen per 1000 feet over the entire year. This is compared to 2008 where we applied 5.5 pounds. The beauty of this program is that it builds the soil to a point where it becomes more efficient thus reducing the need for additional inputs. I can't prove that this program is what saved our greens this winter but I would sure say that it helped prepare them by building a stronger root system and gave them a leg up when it came time to recover.

Here is a picture of 17 right after the freeze followed by a picture taken last Friday, 28 days later:

Project Update
The chipping green bunker is in our sights for this week. the "cornus" if you will has finally developed a fissure and we had to cut it off before someone fell into the bunker. You can see from the picture here that the right side was cut back. We are actually going to cut out close to two feet of sod across the top and bring the lip back down to the bunker elevation. It is amazing how much sand accumulates over the years.

We also finished draining the lows along the cart path on eighteen. No more sloppy spots!

We had a set back on the flag pole this week. As I was trying to pull a new rope through the pulley, the new and the old rope separated causing both to fall to the ground. Very frustrating! Our next plan is to rent a lift and thread the new line from the top. While we have the lift we will replace the light sensors on the parking lot lights taking care of two projects at once.

Northwest Winter Damage
Given the current conditions of some greens around the NW, the USGA is hosting a webcast on the winter injury and will be open to all walks of the golf industry. If you have time I encourage you to give it a try. It should be very interesting. The webcast will be held on Monday, January 25th at 11am. The following information is from the invitation that went out to the OGCSA:

From the Fire to the Freezer - An Update on Putting Green Damage West of the Cascades

The weather pattern in the Pacific Northwest on the wets side of the cascade Mountain range is known for mile summers and winters. However , this was not the case this summer with pythium causing extensive damage to many courses. Now along comes winter with a very cold December and more turf loss. Get the latest from our USGA Green Section agronomist Larry Gilhuly and two golf course superintendents coping with the current situation and what to expect s the spring arrives. The webcast uses Microsoft Live Meeting 2007 Client and may not work for Mac. Use this link to check your system.

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