If you haven't been to the club in a couple of weeks, you'll notice upon your return that we're nearly completely green on the course! Its nice to see the golf course look like its supposed to after such a brutal winter.
The week began with the laser grading of our new tees on 3. We had a contractor bring out their attachment that reads a laser rotating on a tripod and adjusts itself to remain at the preset grade. Our selected grade on the tees is an unnoticeable 1.3%. All tees are constructed with a minimal grade to assist in surface drainage. When they finished grading the tees, we seeded them, raked in the seed, "rolled" it in with cart tires, then smoothed it with the back of a bunker rake. After that, they were watered thoroughly and a growth mat was placed on top. The mat helps retain heat but allows sunlight and moisture through. I expect to see germination this weekend, and still anticipate playing off of them by Memorial Day.
The tee surfaces are now completely prepared, but we still had a lot of work to do on the surrounds. Almost the entire staff was dedicated to do the necessary hand work around the tees. Along with that, Mark was busy installing the new irrigation system for proper coverage on the tees and surrounds. Friday morning's rain made things difficult to finish before the weekend but we will still be able to sod everything by the end of next week.
We also put out our new John Deere fairway mowers on Friday! I was extremely excited to see the quality of cut with as much grass and moisture as they were encountering. Our old mowers would leave a large amount of clippings, requiring us to blow off fairways after being mowed, but these left a very clean playing surface. As with any new pieces of equipment, there are a few adjustments to get just right but that won't take long at all. We're very excited to begin using the rest of the fleet next week.
Sean was the first person to use our new John Deere 220E greensmowers. We tried it out on the little putting green to make sure our mowing height was correct compared to the Toro mowers. After that adjustment was made, I was excited to try our front brushes. These brushes stand up the turf before the mower gets to it, helping to eliminate any "grain" in the greens. More upright growth translates to a dense canopy and better ball roll. I was giddy with excitement when I saw the effects of using the brush. it stood up and removed a noticeably large amount of dead winter material. I look forward to working this tool into our regular maintenance routine!
When you get to 12 green and 13 tee, you'll notice the pines behind 13 tee are gone. We worked with our neighbors to open up some air movement and increase sunlight to those tees. This could also benefit 12 green with some extra airflow.
Our new range nets have now been installed. After over a year battling with insurance, our claim is settled and the nets are completed.