Fall is Just Around the Corner and for the Turf Department That Means More Chores To Do
17 SEP 2021
Beginning our long shut down…
It is mid-September and that means it’s time to start our early shutdown procedures. We have begun the cutting down of our naturalized and fescue areas starting with our rear fescue faces on Sidewinder. Due to the great growing weather we have had for most of the year, our fescue has reached heights of over 3 feet. With over 250 acres we must get an early start to finish before the snow flies. There is a fair amount of cleanup after the cut as we make every effort to remove clippings from our playing surfaces and cart paths. The fescue areas must be cut down as they will become matted down from the winter as they go into dormancy. It also allows our sprayers access to apply herbicides next year in those in play areas.
We are also beginning to cut down our perennial flowers and some grasses. There is surprisingly quite a bit of removal needed along the back terrace wall as the tall grasses have blocked just about all views of the rear property!
We will soon start packing up and winterizing our hand watering hoses (hopefully!) and then power washing, super cleaning and rust control application of all the turf equipment fleet. Having our equipment cleaned to perfection is key to our winter maintenance.
One of our daily fears is the possibility of a hydraulic leak. All our cutting equipment is powered by either a gas or diesel motor that powers a hydraulic pump which powers several highly pressurized lines and motors. Due to wear and tear and age there is always the potential of a burst line or a seal that may fail. The heat generated by the pumps is what actually kills the turf grass. Well, it happened…ugh. Our verticutting tri plex blew a line in the last couple passes on the first Sidewinder green and the first pass on the second green. We are currently waiting to see if our leak has killed the grass or if it will recover. It looks as though the crown of the plant is still in good shape and the damage is just foliar. We will wait a bit longer before we begin the over 100 hours of plugging.
On a nicer note, our beehives have been extremely active during this weather. They are still gathering from our numerous apple and pear trees. We are estimating our hives are over 150,000 bees strong! All guided by 2 queens. We hope to harvest honey in the coming weeks.
Did you know
We have over 10 acres of greens surface (average 18 hole course is 2.5), over 70 acres of fairways (average 18 hole course is 23), over 10 acres of tees (average 18 hole is 2) and over 10 acres of bunkers (average 18 hole is 1.5)….wow!!
Bill McAllister, Golf Course Superintendent