September 23rd was the 2015 Fall Equinox, the day I circle on my calender as soon as summer starts in late June. The fall or autumnal equinox is special because it marks the time when cool season turf can really start to recover and thrive as opposed to the 12 weeks or specifically 88 days of summer. And because Granite Bay Golf Club is predominately a cool season turf golf course it is the time that we recover from our summer turf setbacks.
It also marks the time of the year that we start to aerify the golf course which can help with the aforementioned recovery process. We have front nine, back nine alternating closures starting on Tuesday, October 6 2015.
2015 Fall Aerification Schedule
- Tuesday 10/6/15 Course Closed Core Aerify Putting Surfaces
- Wednesday 10/7/15 F9 Open Aerify / Seed B9 Fairway / Rough
- Thursday 10/8/15 B9 Open Aerify / Seed F9 Fairway / Rough
- Tuesday 10/13/15 B9 Open Continue Aerify / Seed F9 Fairway / Rough
- Wednesday 10/14/15 F9 Open Continue Aerify / Seed B9 Fairway / Rough
Aerificarion Process Fall 2015
Four years of drought and Granite Bays total reliance on Folsom Reservoir as it's golf course irrigation source has taken it toll on many of the turfgrass areas throughout the course. Mandatory reductions of 25% in 2014 and 36% in 2015 along with the lack of deep soaking rain for trees and turf have left the soils dry.
We've managed these reductions avoiding wholesale loss of turf but not without our issues. As much as the golf course needs an aggressive core aeration right now we have to be careful because this drought is not over. We still have a mandate to reach a 36% conservation from a 2013 benchmark and aggressively opening the golf course up with aeration would require more water for recovery then we currently have.
Therefore our plan is to core aerate greens and spot aerate fairways and rough. We will be rolling the dice and seeding all of the areas that have thinned out this summer and hope that the forecasted 95% chance of a strong El Nino event will soak and establish the seed throughout the winter. Hopefully this forecasted event will at minimum ease the drought restrictions in 2016 at which time we will aggressively core aerate the entire property in the spring. Hope is not a strategy but the scientific forecast does give me some. Time will tell.