Welcome to the April edition of our Course Blog keeping you updated on the general condition of the golf course plus details of all the work Head Green Keeper, Shaun Kench, and his team have been doing.
April was generally a very warm month, given the time of year, with temperatures hitting an incredible high of 23 degrees and an average of 14 degrees. Only 10mm of rain was recorded up to the last weekend of the month. We are expecting very heavy rainfall as a result of Storm Hannah hitting the UK on Friday 26th April as well as much lower temperatures and high gusting wind.
We finally got the greens hollow cored to a depth of 4 inches during the month. They were also verti-cut to 8mm and we removed over 4 tonnes of moss, thatch layer and organic matter from the surfaces! The greens were then overseeded with Bent Fescue Greens Mix, top dressed and fertilised with 12-3-10 Ultralight Uno.
Many people have asked, in regards to the top dressing process, why we don't fill the holes completely. There are several reasons behind this and hopefully the following explains why:
Hollow coring reduces compaction, so filling the holes almost reverses the whole process.
Too much sand would encourage the greens to dry out much quicker throughout the summer months.
29 tonnes of sand was applied to the greens as per the recommendation by the agronomist we are working with.
Following the process the greens have recovered really well so far and will be close to full recovery within the next week or so.
The tee boxes have been overseeded and top dressed as well and will receive an application of fertiliser in the coming days. Once established, and the fertiliser kicks in, we will begin to selectively spray the weeds on the tees, approached and other problematic areas throughout the golf course.
The irrigation system has now been fully tested for any electrical issues and so far no problems have arisen or materialised that give any cause for concern. On Monday 29th April we will be running our first automatic run in the morning so if you are playing please be aware that sprinkler heads may pop up unexpectedly!
AROUND THE CLUBHOUSE & HOTEL
Jonny spent much of April busy planting around the hotel and public areas as well as tidying some bushes and trees on walkways. He also helped us out on the course renovations work so his time on the estates has been a bit limited, but his normal duties and work will continue into May and beyond.
It seems that each month we have to mention a departure from our Green Keeping Team and again, unfortunately, this month is no different as Barry leaves us on 30th April! We all wish him the very best in his new adventure and he will hard to replace. However, there is some good news! After lengthy conversations we have encouraged Dan to rejoin the team now that his family issues have been resolved, so welcome back Dan! We also welcome Alan Smart to the team as replacement for Barry and he is due to start with us on 1st May. This will be the first time since starting his role as Head Greenkeeper that Shaun has had the luxury of a full team, and will certainly help with the improvements to the golf course over the coming months and years.
Our complete team is made up of:
Head Greenkeeper - Shaun Kench
1st Assistant - Dan Anstiss
Assistant Greenkeeper - Alan Smart
Summer Casual Greenkeeper - Radford Matthews
Summer Casual Greenkeeper - Tom Bellows
Estates Gardener - Jon Ivey
Shaun and the Green Keeper Team would request that all on course directions, signage and line markings are all adhered to until further notice when playing. These are all visible and are in place to help keep the course in a presentable and enjoyable condition for all golfers. It is also requested that due to the reduced light in the mornings that the Green Keepers are given right of way at all times, and can all golfers please wait to be called up before playing shots.
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