Greens Director update 6th May 2019

Course Condition: 
The course is now being played in “summer conditions” i.e. blue tees and without preferred lies, if not always in summer weather. The car warning light advised me of possible ice this Saturday as I drove on the M62 towards the club.  It is after all still spring and as we can see on many of our larger established trees they are not yet if full leaf.  
Staff hours are now largely focussed on grass cutting and the presentation of the course for us to enjoy. There are however some areas of the curse which are still suffering from last years exceptionally hot and dry summer followed by a somewhat dry winter. This is particularly evident on some of our tees which we were unable to water last summer as this would have left none for the greens.  These areas have already been seeded but will remain an area we will focus on over the coming weeks. 
Some of you may have seen the irrigation system “burst” we had on the 2nd hole which took the system out of use for over a week during April.  Fortunately, at that time the greens were not affected and the repair was undertaken relative quickly with the temporary stream in front of the hole lasting only a day or so.


Greens:
The low overnight temperatures including frost several mornings a week are hindering growth on our greens.  The sand based structure retaining the cold long into the day when air temperatures rise.  To try and address this all greens have had two applications of top dressing and fertilizer as well as having been verti cut twice and rolled. A third light application of top dressing may be applied next week together with another application of feed to ensure growing conditions are ideal once overnight temperatures rise.
The bare patches from last summers drought on our greens are slowly recovering with chemical wetting agents being applied through both the irrigation system and hand held pipes to the worst affected areas.  This chemical should help retain moister in the root zone area and allow the seed applied to germinate. The use of a mechanical over seeder is scheduled for later in May when growing conditions will be ideal. 
Lastly in respect of the greens I am please to be able to say that at last the hollo coring holes are now closing up.  I appreciate that this has been a concern for many throughout the winter and am grateful for your patience in this regard.  Hopefully this year the weather will allow us to undertake hollo coring in August as normal which with the normal summer conditions should see these holes disappear within a week or more. 


Winter programme:
Winter is now behind us and although we didn’t achieve all we would have wished from our winter plan we did achieve some notable successes. If time permits we still plan to lay a path to the right of the 12th green removing the unsightly rubber path from some years back.  Below is a brief summary of the additional work achieved over and above keeping the course open such as pumping out bunkers and servicing the greens etc.

  • All course ditches cleared to allow water to flow off the course unhindered.
  • Practice nets fully refurbished.
  • 1st / 18th pond drained and approx. 1500 tones of silt removed.
  • Drain to 2nd pond replaced and exit area redesigned with wooden sleepers.
  • Some of the excessive tree coverage removed to the right of the 3rd hole.
  • Trees removed to the right of the 5th tee to increase sight line from Blue tee areas.
  • Path installed to 8th hole from driveway to fairway.
  • Fairway cut on 8th hole moved across to pond, bunker filled (to be turfed in near future) gorse planted to right hand side of fence and left over the ditch.
  • Waterfall and stream re design on 18th hole.
  • Fountain in 18th pond removed, refurbished and replaced.
  • Water lilies replaced in the 1st / 18th pond.
  • Top dressing of crushed brick applied to all existing paths.

 

Finally:
I would like to thank the “tigers section” for their donation of £700 towards the cost of repairing our fountain on the 1st / 18th pond.  The contribution was most welcome and helped in the ongoing fight to deliver improvements within the budget which NGC can support.

 

Enjoy your golf

Andy Booth
Greens Director