Thursday, December 13, 2012

Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses

Bay Oaks Country Club is in the process of becoming a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary.  The press release below outlines the program and our club involvement.  Thus far we have applied for certification in the areas of: Wildlife & Habitat Management, Chemical Use Reduction and Safety, Water Conservation and Water Quality Management.  Listed here are a few of the things we have done to further our environmental conservation efforts:
- implemented minimal maintenance techniques on out of play areas, including shorelines
- 30 min environmental conservation classes with Jr. Camps over the summer each week
- installed a Garden with the help of the Bay Oaks Garden Club
- performed a bird survey with member and non-member help
- ongoing wildlife survey
- designated wildlife habitat areas on the golf course
- recycled old tires
- implemented recycling program for Golf Course Maintenance in addition to the recycling taking place already at the club
-fertilizer applied through the irrigation system to the golf course which is much more efficient than granular applications
-mulching tree debri for use on site
-leave dead trees standing where not a safety hazard to provide wildlife habitat

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

New Triplex greens mower

We received a new greens mower today.  Now we can rotate our old greens mower to a tee mower.


Today was our first frost delay of the season.  For frost to form the three c's have to come together.  Cold (near freezing), calm (little to no wind) and clear (clear sky).  When frost forms on the grass, the cells of the grass plant freeze.  Any traffic that impacts the frozen grass plant causes the frozen cells to burst thus killing the grass plant.  This is why we delay golf until the frost has melted away.  Thank you for your patience on frost delay mornings as we are protecting our golf course for all to enjoy.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Is Summer finally over????

After a beautiful week of warm fall weather, Mother Nature decided it is finally time to cool us off and bring us a touch of winter.  Along with the 20MPH winds blowing across the golf course today, we had 1.15 inches of rain overnight bringing our YTD total to 53.5 inches.  As usual that amount of rain has our bunkers washed out and flooded so we are busy repairing them today.  Good news is, with the strong winds the golf course should dry out quickly.

On another note, the sink hole repairs were finished just in time last Tuesday.  An hour after the sod was put in place we had .75 inches of rain.  As expected the repairs are holding up perfectly.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Sinkholes repaired just in Time

We recieved .75 inches of rain yesterday afternoon bringing our total for the year to 52.35 inches.  It has been a dry fall so it was nice to get the rain.  The sinkhole repairs were finished up yesterday as well, just in time for it to rain on the new sod.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Sink holes

The sinkholes on holes #2 and #4 are almost repaired.  Both were caused by corrosion of the corrogated metal pipe that was used for the drain lines.  In both cases, seperations of pipe joints helped to cause the sinkholes also.  Once the repairs are complete on both holes they will get sodded at the same time.
#2 sinkhole before repair
#2 sinkhole after repair
#4 sinkhole before

#4 sinkhole, drain box and drainage piping exposed

concrete drain box removed, 6 pipes entering, 2 pipes leaving
24" corrogated metal pipe, joint smashed and seperated, big hole for  dirt to fall into

36"x24" ADS plastic tee installation, new drainage

36inch stack rising to finish grade, ready to connect incoming pipes
deep hole, inside of 36inch stack

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Herb Garden

We are currently preparing an herb garden adjacent to the halfway house.  Once it is complete our Bay Oaks Garden Club will take it over and grow fresh herbs and possibly vegetables down the road for Chef to use.  Below are some pictures of our progress.

The area tends to hold water so we drilled drainage holes through the concrete wall to allow extra water to escape.  The 2 inch gravel layer below the soil acts as a drain to keep the soil from staying overly saturated.
spreading gravel drainage layer

We used a mix of native topsoil, organic garden mix, sand and mulch to form the soil used in the garden.
soil mix being placed over gravel

soil mix spread and ready for irrigation installation

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Greens Aerification recap

Our final greens aerification of the year is complete.  Everything went smooth and the greens are on their way to recovery.  We will do extra rolling for the next couple weeks to regain smoothness as fast as possible.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Rain Totals YTD

I had the question posed to me about year-to-date rain totals.
Year-to-date we have recieved 43inches of rain here at Bay Oaks Country Club.  We had a brief shower today but it was not enough to register in our rain gauge.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Final Greens Aerification

Our last greens aerification of 2012 will take place this coming Monday and Tuesday August 13 and 14th.  We are using 5/8" tines which pull a 1/2" core every 1.5 inches.  We will follow that up with rolling and topdressing to fill the holes and smooth the putting surface.  This is the same procedure we used in June which was successful.  The driving range will open on Tuesday as normal, though the golf course will remain closed.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

We really are mowing

I promise you all, we really are mowing our tall grass.  Some of the out-of-play areas grew up to 12-18 inches before we got them mowed causing an over abundance of clippings.  The clippings will eventually go away, either by us picking them up or by natural ways.

It has been nice having a stretch of dry weather.  We need it to get caught up on all of our normal maintenance practices.

Friday, July 13, 2012

More Rain

We have received 6.5 inches over the last 5 days at the golf course.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Weekend Rain

Over the weekend, Friday through Sunday, we received 2.35 inches bringing our YTD to 34 inches.  We are playing catch up on the rough mowing.  All the rain over the past couple weeks has really helped the rough grow.  Please bear with us as we mow and disperse the clumps.

Short Game Area - Here We Go - Stripping the Chipping Green

Today we stripped all the grass off the chipping green.  We used some of it to replenish our nursery, Hearthstone Country Club took some as well.  We also removed all the sprinkler heads from the area.

Maca's Trail is now CLOSED until the construction on the short game area is complete.  Once work starts there will be heavy equipment operating and tree clearing going on and it is not safe for people to drive through the area.

Cutting sod

Cutting sod

Clearing off the sod

Chipping Green stripped

Replenishing our nursery green

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Short Game Area

Last Thursday we sprayed the existing grass where the new short game area is to go with herbicide to eradicate it.  As the picture shows, a week later there is a noticeable difference between the healthy grass in the forefront compared to the dying grass around the chipping green.  We applied a second round of herbicide today to ensure a complete kill of the existing grass.  We are scheduled to start stripping the sod off the chipping green tomorrow, Friday June 29 and plan to finish that part of the process the first part of next week.  All this has to happen before the contractor can start work.  Once work starts on the new short game area, for safety reasons, Maca's Trail will be closed for the duration of construction.  The back driving range tee will also be closed due to lack of access.  The primary driving range tee will be set-up on grass Friday-Sunday and mats Tuesday-Thursday.
Dying grass where short game area is to go.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Greens aerification

This is the process we are using to aerify and clean-up the greens.  The aerification is the easy part.  The clean-up is what takes the most time and manpower.
Clean-up the plugs
Green topdressed
Dragging the sand into the holes
Holes filled with sand

Sunday, June 17, 2012


We received 2 inches of rain yesterday morning bringing our total year to date at the club to 30 inches.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

#11 Fairway aerification

The aerifing process on #11 fairway is complete.  There is a noticable amount of clay in the fairway that has not broken down yet.  With regular irrigation cycles and mowings the clay that is in the fairways will work itself back into the turf canapy.  Part of our clean-up process included multiple vertical mowings which followed by a regular mowing causes the fairway to look scalped.  There is also a noticable amount of grass debri in the rough which is what was blown off following the vertical mowings.  This process is a step in the right direction for #11 fairway.
Aerifier 1" x 6" holes
clean-up, the fun part

Friday, June 8, 2012

Horseshoe Pit

We built a new horseshoe pit behind the pool while the Adams Tour was in town.

Saturday, June 2, 2012


We have seen an uptick in vandalism over the last month.  This is disapointing though not surprising considering the neighborhood kids are getting out of school.    Last night someone drove across #6 green twice. The tracks look like they are from a golf cart with off-road tires.  Please if you see any suspicious activity on the golf course or around the club at night call the police.

tennis restroom May 4
Driving range ameneties in pond #18, May 4
#17 green May 3
luckily bag stands float, May 4

Monday, April 30, 2012

Greens Aerification Finished

We completed our first greens aerification of the season last Monday and Tuesday.  The process was successful and our goal of pulling out large cores deep followed by a topdressing to fill the holes was realized.  Following the aerification and topdressing, the greens were rolled with a 2500 pound roller 3 times and our speed roller 2 times by Thursday.  The collers were also aerified and rolled.  The greens are recovering nicely and we are getting back on a regular mowing and rolling routine.  Today we aerified the large driving range tee.

deep-tine aerifier

behind the aerifier - fresh holes, the green takes a breath of fresh air

new holes .75"x11" on a 3"x5" pattern

coller aerification

material cleanup

material cleanup

dragging the green to help clean after all material cleaned up

15 green 1 week post aerification

holes are closing up 1 week after aerification

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Update Tuesday April 17

We recieved 1.5 inches of rain yesterday bringing our total for the year to almost 20 inches.
The aerification of #11 fairway has been rescheduled for the week of May 1 because the contractor has had some vital equipment break down.
We have prepared large areas for sod in the front left lawn of the clubhouse.  Our sod delivery was scheduled for today but because of the rains yesterday we rescheduled for next Wednesday.
A reminder, we are aerifiying the greens next Monday and Tuesday and the golf course will be closed both days. 

Friday, April 6, 2012

American alligator

The alligators are making there presence known again.  I have not personally seen an alligator in all the golf course ponds but I would make the assumption that there is one in each pond.  The one in the pond on #18 likes to sun itself on the bank closest to the practice putting green and 18 green.  Please use common sense and stay away and please keep your children and pets away. 

Below are excerpts from the Texas Parks and Wildlife website about the American alligator in Texas.  Both links are extremely informative and provide a lot of information.

"American alligators normally avoid humans, but American alligators can become perceived as a nuisance when they establish territories around people. As human populations in Texas continue to expand, there have been an increased number of encounters between people and alligators. Alligators have been known to prey on pets and must be treated with caution. Alligators can be surprisingly quick on land and are capable of running quickly over short distances." (

Another excerpt and link:
"Most Texans in "gator country" will live in close proximity to these native reptiles with no confrontations. However, there are occasions when certain alligators become "a nuisance" and must be handled by the proper authorities. TPWD received more than 400 nuisance alligator calls in Southeast Texas during 2003. (A substantial number of these were not true problem gators, and the sheer volume of these reports is taxing available manpower and resources needed to handle the real problems.) More than 100 alligators were relocated, mostly from subdivisions adjacent to natural habitat. A similar number had to be killed in similar situations. In these incidents alligators had lost their fear of humans and exhibited aggressive behavior. Relocation is not always a viable option, as by nature these animals are territorial. Relocating problem animals to other areas often creates greater problems. What is needed is a better-educated populace more able to recognize the few nuisance alligators and to coexist safely with the majority of alligators that are not nuisances." (

Friday, March 30, 2012


We recieved another .90 inches of rain yesterday returning the course to CART PATH ONLY for at least a day.  Yesterday's rain brings our "year to date" total to 19.10 inches.  There is certainly good news with all the rain we have recieved over the past 6 months.  According to the National Drought Monitor our current drought status is "None" which is quite a change from the "Exceptional" status we held on to for the final 7 months of 2011.  "Exceptional" is the worst drought status there is.  Compare the current Drought Monitor Map of Texas with the map from early October.