Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Trees and golf

Golf Course Superintendents refer to the time of Memorial Day until Labor Day as The 100 Days. This is the stressful time to grow cool season turf. The sun will be at its highest point in the sky soon, UV radiation begins to damage the plant, respiration outpaces photosynthesis, irrigation systems become irritation systems, and so on.
Our 100 day stretch at Briar is marked by small fluffy white stuff falling from the sky. No, it's not snow, it is cottonwood seed. Shortly after the oaks finish making their mess on the property, it's the cottonwood's turn. I love trees, I really do, I just want them in the correct place, maintained, and not damaging assets.
Tree management in golf costs real dollars. Branches on playing surfaces must be removed prior to mowing, loose debris clogs up rollers and radiators, tree bases require hand trimming, and tree canopies need to be properly maintained. (We won't mention leaf removal until October 😀)
Trees directly impact the bottom line by the money that is spent maintaining them and indirectly by causing delays in work production. As we enter our 100 days, we like to be as efficient as possible, to free up labor for the important job of managing the cultural methods that are necessary to keep the cool season turf alive during the peak of stress. The jobs of slicing, spiking, hand watering, top dressing, brushing, and so on, need to be the priority in June, July, and August.
I hope you had a pleasant holiday.
See you on the slopes, I made first tracks!

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