Saturday, June 7, 2014

Golf Course Maintenance Update

June 1 came and our temperatures finally reached 90 degrees.  It is rare in Houston to go the whole month of May without any 90-degree days.  The last week of May did bring some much-needed rain.  The dreaded cracks in the deep rough were starting to spread but with the 7 inches of rain we received May 26-28 the are closed back up and the grass is really growing.  This is evident by the amount of grass clipping in the rough.  Once we get caught back up mowing rough, the amount of clippings will decrease.

In May we started using an aquatic vegetation specialist to keep our golf course ponds clean of algae, plankton and aquatic weeds.  The water quality in the ponds has increased significantly and over the next few months there will be a gradual decrease in the amount of weeds around the edges of the ponds.  He does use a boat to apply products to the ponds so please do not be alerted when you see an aluminum boat driving around the ponds.  He is not fishing and he does have clearance to be on property.

Monday June 16th and Tuesday the 17th we are aerifying the greens and verticutting the fairways for the second time this year.  We are using the same process we have used the last 3 summers in June and August.  We remove a .5inch core every 1.5inches throughout the whole green.  The material is removed, sand is applied to fill the holes and the greens are rolled and fertilized to achieve a quick recovery.  Aerification is necessary a minimum a 3 times a year to remove enough organic/thatch material to keep up with what the greens naturally produce.  By removing this material and replacing it with sand we increase air and water exchange throughout the green profile.  The benefits are increased rooting, quicker infiltration of water, a firmer putting surface once healed, decreased compaction and an overall healthier green.  The healthier the turf, the better they can withstand the extreme temperatures we experience in Houston.  Our final greens aerification of this year will take place August 11th and 12th.  

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