Thursday, December 3, 2009

The Aging of Our Ponds- Part II

The History of Our Ponds - Part II

In part one of the aging of our ponds, I discussed the crucial part our ponds play in water storage and irrigation delivery for the golf course turf. Additionally addressed was the fact that the aging process that our ponds, and for that matter most ponds experience is beginning limit both our irrigation holding capacity and our ability to remove the water for irrigation.
The history of our ponds might shed some light on our particular aging process and how it might have been accelerated. This information will not change anything just provide information so everyone understands our upcoming solutions.
The history of our ponds are intricately linked to the construction history of the course and this entire history is well documented. The following are excerpts are from “The History of Granite Bay Golf Club” which is on the Granite Bay website.
“The two bodies of water on the course play an integral role in the irrigation system, and both have interesting stories to tell. George's Lake between holes one and nine, is named after George Dunmore, the owner of the land and one of the original partners. Louie's Lake, which fronts hole number three, is named after Louie Costanzo, a close friend and business partner of Dunmore.”

“The present George's Lake is more than three times larger than the original stock pond placed there, along with fish, in the 1950's. In order to install the plumbing and pumps for the irrigation system, the lake had to be dammed. The California Fish and Game Department scooped up all the fish and moved them down stream to Louie's Lake, and the construction started. When the natural growth along the shoreline of the lake was dug up, the rootstock was saved and was then re-spread along the shoreline of the new larger lake. About eight months later, the new George's Lake, replete with fish, looked like it had been there since the beginning of time.”
“The story about Louie's Lake is a little on the bizarre side. Louie Costanzo, and Dunmore, were not only long time chums and partners in the Wexford project, but he shared George's passion for building a golf course. He had a habit of driving around the barren property and discussing ideas for the golf course with Dunmore. This, of course, was long before the involvement of Cook and Parsinen. One day Louie hauled a bulldozer out to the property and began clearing trees on what is now the 18th hole. Back then, it was to be the first hole and it was to play uphill. He then decided to create a lake at the location of the present third hole green, and began digging out earth, trees and brush. That lake now bears his name and might have been even bigger had the county not stepped in with a "cease and desist" order to stop clearing trees.”

The California Department of Fish and Game was not the only regulatory entities that Mr. Parsinan & Mr. Cook had to deal with during construction as you can imagine. The developers were required to compensate for impacts from development on a little over two acres of wetlands. This was a complicated mitigation process that resulted in the mandated formal design and monitoring of the planting of over 2000 riparian woodland and scrub species around George’s and Louie’s lakes. In addition to the various woodland species that were required to be planted around the ponds perennial marsh plants that were native to property were transplanted and moved to different parts of the pond edges to accelerate the re-establishment of the wet land habitat.
Fourteen years later we have well-established vegetation around both George’s and Louie’s Lakes. This vegetation fits the design style and vision of “Golf As It Should Be”. The vegetation consisting of trees, wetland shrubs, tulles and rushes continue to grow & spread and deposit foliage and material into most crucially George’s lake every year. This combined with the sediment that comes into George’s Lake from Linda Creek is creating a situation where the lake is losing its depth and breadth. Part III of the series of the Aging of our Ponds will cover more of this eutrophication or aging process.

Propagated wetland vegetation surrounding Georges lake #1 / #9

Propagated vegetation around Louie's Lake #3

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