Thursday, June 28, 2012

Cart paths

One of the ongoing projects that we engage in is pothole repair. Lupe is working with asphalt in this photo. When he is finished, he puts sand over the material to prevent it from sticking to the tires. This is an ongoing project, as our winters are tough on asphalt.
I hope you have a smooth ride,

Monday, June 25, 2012

Sunny and dry

The forecast looks good for golf! There is no rain in sight. We like to keep the golf course dry, however, extended periods of dry weather will dry the soils out past a point where we can re-wet with the irrigation system.
When we irrigate we can only put down about a tenth of an inch of water. The result is a constant light watering at the surface, which makes for a soft playing surface. Soaking rains are needed to replenish the water in the root zone, so that we can allow the surface to dry and firm up. Water infiltration, a key concept for playable turf.
Is it August yet?

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Fairways gone white

You may have noticed a white cast that the fairways have taken on recently.  Closer examination reveals the cause....this little white flower.  The poa annua (annual bluegrass, yes annual!) grass plant is one of the most highly adapted monocots on the planet.  This fierce little competitor has evolved to be successful in numerous growing environments.
The success of poa also lies in its ability to reproduce.  Most plants have an environmental "trigger" that initiates flowering.  Some "triggers" include factors such as photoperiod, temperature, soil moisture, and may even combine factors.  Poa annua has multiple triggers and mainly responds to a number of stresses.  The timing of the poa flower? When it feels like it.
I have never witnessed in my nine seasons here at Briar, the poa in the fairways seeding like it is.
If you are a believer in nature and story it tells like I am, well, remember 1988?
Have a great Sunday,

Sent from Erwin's phone, please excuse grammar and punctuation.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Great day for golf, flower issues

Looks like a great day!
The course has begun to dry out again and is playing well.
One area of concern for me is some of the flower beds adjacent to patios and walkways. Flowers in these areas are displaying signs of chemical injury. The most common cause of this type of injury in these areas are people discarding beverages into the beds. While you may think this "extra drink" would be beneficial for the plants, the contrary is true.
Please refrain from disposing any beverage into a planting beds, most annuals are delicate and will not appreciate the effort.
Have a great day,

P.S. I look forward to the abuse I will take for this blog, go ahead, I'm ready. I have served up quite a meatball.
Blade is currently in the lead.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Our new Assistant Superintendent

I would like to introduce Ryan Gage, who Is replacing Dave Miloshoff. David took the Head Superintendent position at White Hawk in March.
Ryan is another Michigan guy, however he is a Spartan. Ryan was at Canoe Brook Country Club in New Jersey and wanted to get back to the Midwest where his fiancée resides. Ryan has jumped right into the fire as his first day was last Monday. Welcome to the driest summer since 1988 Mr. Gage, now grab a hose.
Please help me welcome to Ryan to Briar with a friendly "conversation" as all course complaints and suggestions should be directed toward him.
Just kidding (not really).
Enjoy to cool weather,

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Coyote pups.....vandals

The coyote pups are out!
Strange thing about coyotes, they will not jump the ropes on the course, instead, they will cut them with there molar teeth.
The cuts are as clean as scissors.
They also chew on other amenities like the green traffic stakes and tee markers.
I found this green stake lying out of place and you can see the small teeth marks at the top.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy fathers day!

One would think the inch and a half of rain we received would be my fathers day present, but not really.
The real present is the gift of being a father. Every time I leave home, I take a pal with me to photograph and sent pictures home to my daughter. Choco went with me this year, and enjoyed some golf.
Enjoy the view and happy fathers day!
They are truly blessings,

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Irrigation uniformity

We continue to check the efficiency and uniformity of our system. One area we are concerned with is one white fairway. The catch devices shown help us measure the water the system puts out. By creating a pattern with the device, we can graph uniformity and make adjustments.
We also found some rocks!
We are entering a very dry period.
Afternoon watering will be the norm as we do our best to avoid disrupting play.
Syringing, is the practice of using the sprinklers in series for short periods (3 minutes each) to cool the turf and relieve wilt stress.
Sorry for any dampness caused on my part,

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Crop circles of the golf kind

The 2012 golf season is off to a dry start. Every golf course in the area is experiencing the same challenges. All inadequacies in the irrigation system show up very nicely. The trick is finding the problem and having a solution.
Here is one example.
Dry area 6 feet in diameter around sprinkler head.
Watching the spray pattern indicates a faulty short range nozzle.
Inspection reveals a worn tip on the short range nozzle, shown in the photo on the furthest left nozzle. Compare a newer short range nozzle on the assembly on the right.
One down, a thousand more heads to go!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Golf courses and habitat

The days of "silent spring" are behind us for the most part. Golf courses are managed with a stewardship mentality. Water conservation, protection of water quality, chemical use reduction, and habitat management are at the core of most golf course managers philosophies.
This fawn was observed yesterday, separated from its mother. Our staff carefully placed her back where she had wandered from, and safely under cover. Last evening Jack observed their reunion. The golf course can often times be our reconnection with nature.
Come out and enjoy,

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Important divot mix info

One of the major goals this year is to improve the quality of the range turf. One way we felt we could do this is by changing the type of seed used on the range. The range tee will be seeded to a combination of bluegrass an ryegrass. By combining the fast germination quality of ryegrass with the thatch impact resistance of bluegrass, we hope to provide a better practice area.
The important message for the member is that we will now have two types of divot mix, one for the range an one for the course. The easiest way to tell the difference is by looking at the seed in the mix. Bentgrass is nearly invisible in a mix, very tiny seeds and is photographed on the left, at the tip of the tee. In contrast, the blue and rye seeds are much bigger and are photographed to the right respectively.
Please do not take any seed mix from the range to fill up the mix bottles on your cart. We want to avoid any blue/rye contamination in our bentgrass fairways.
The yellow color of the seed is a special coating that retains moisture and aids in germination.
I could go on about rhizomatous rye and fescues and if they have true rhizomes and stolons, but I think you have had enough,

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

How to practice

Sorry for the delay, but I would like to resume the conversation about the practice range tee.
The photo shows the correct ball placement for practicing. By placing a ball on the back edge of the divot, we are impacting a minimal amount of turf. Once about a foot of turf is removed, the ball can be placed at the front of the divot and inside enough to leave a strip of turf between divot lines. The strip of turf allows a micro environment that is optimum for germination, an encourages lateral growth narrow enough to help the divot fill in quicker.
Please share this with anyone who enjoys to practice the game and likes to hit off of healthy turf.
I also have a video demonstrating the process on theworldofturf you Tube channel.
Tomorrow.....changing grass types on the range and why!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

First joyride of the year

We avoided any serious damage, but we experienced the first joyriding of the 2012 season. Every year the golf course hosts evenings of power slides, spin outs, bunker jumping, and other nighttime fun. Please be on the lookout for any evening and nighttime cart activity.
Looks like a great day to play!