Friday, May 24, 2024

Summer is Coming

It is only 27 days until the official start of Summer marked by the Summer Solstice on Thursday June 20th. This begins the 94 day period leading to the  Fall Equinox on Sunday September 22nd where the hours of daylight equal the hours of night. The Summer season has traditionally been the hardest season on this golf course and most of our preparations and efforts throughout the year are aimed at surviving it. 

Our 2021 renovation / turf conversion addressed in part our summer issues by converting our fairways to warm season hybrid bermuda, however the golf course is still 60% cool season turf in the rough which is susceptible to these Sacramento summers. We have been adding Tall Fescue to the rough because of its superior heat tolerance to ryegrass, but it is still a cool season variety and therefore doesn't thrive when it gets hot.  As a reminder, hybrid bermuda does not do well in the shade and with our tree lined Parkland Style Golf Course and associated shade, the best options for the rough are the cool season varieties of turf. 

So summer is coming but we feel good about our preparations and the condition of the golf course going into this stressful period. First, we are not worried about 40% of the golf course, specifically the fairways as they will thrive in the summer heat. Secondly, we have a strong population of the hardier Tall Fescue that has been established over the last three years and thirdly we successfully core aerated all of the rough in the early spring and we are counting on big dividends from that process.

How you can help is minimizing cart traffic in the rough during the summer. Utilize cart paths when you can and enter golf holes through the gates then drive on the durable fairway turf until you exit the hole through the exit gates. Currently we do not have any holes designated cart path only but anticipate closing a couple holes at a time in the summer to mitigate the wear and tear of cart traffic, so respecting those closures when we do have them is also helpful. 

Thank you in advance for your help with this matter. We all want the same thing, a golf course that we can be proud of year-round. Below are some pictures of recent progress on the golf course.

Last week we finally got to fixing a nagging low spot that was left over from the 2021 renovation to the left of the new forward tee on #2. Prior to us starting to sod this area it was a lovely puddle of mud.

We decided to do a sump drain because our normal recourse of tapping into existing drainage was a much larger job then we wanted to tackle at the time. A sump drain is a big hole filled with rock. The vertical drainpipe in the picture will serve as an inspection hole where we can monitor the depth of the drainage water at any given time. Additionally, the pipe will be helpful during rainy weather as the area is still low and might need to be pumped. 

Above is the finished product. No more mud hole.

We recently purchased a large fairway drag brush that we have been using ahead of fairway mowers to remove the grain in our Santa Anna Hybrid Bermuda fairways. This brushing has really tightened these fairways up. 

This week we started repairing some of the bad areas along cart paths primarily. The process is strip the area of what bad sod is left then rototill sand and compost into existing native soil conditioning the soil so it has a fighting chance of supporting new sod. 

After to soil preparation, grading and tamping, we add some fertilizer, re-sod with fresh sod from our nursery then irrigate and rope off  to cart traffic so new sod can establish. We addressed areas near #3 green, #16 green & #6 green this week.

This picture was taken Friday 5/24/24. All seven Cygnets still flourishing at about 5 weeks old. The Family move regularly from pond to pond now, and one of the parents has been spotted on multiple occasions flying around low and looking for I don't know what.

A postcard image taken by Meredith of the same Swans and Cygnets this morning, Friday 5/24/24. 

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