Some summer weather has dropped into place and the Golf Course is enjoying the chance to dry out. Growth in the rough will slow down as temperatures increase and the rain tails off. We have been able to put our growth regulator programs into place on the greens, tees and fairways which helps us reduce mowing frequency while increasing consistency and quality.
Our normal bunker maintenance on Monday's includes push mowing the steep banks and weedeating the edges. Keeping up with the edges with the weedeater has meant a nice clean edge and really only going out with shovels to cut a new edge once a year, if at all.
Our big project for the week was installing the new patio up at the new Halfway House. Last week we shaped in the area and now with the pleasant weather we can get the pavers down. Crushed stone is tamped in and then covered with concrete sand which is again compacted. Ultimately this is more tedious than floating out and sodding a new green! We start laying the pavers in a herringbone pattern and work to cut in the border all the way around the patio. Mr. Lombardo's stone subcontractors also started work Wednesday to extend our retaining wall in order to hold the soil and mulch in from the driving range tee side.
The stone guys worked their magic on the new wall which has turned out really nice. They also started facing the new outside walls for the Halfway House as we continued laying down pavers.
Our paver work continued and the building is shaping up and fitting in nicely. The new patio is easily accessible from some new stone steps from the range tee. There will be plenty of room to maneuver and sit down or grab a quick bite to eat and go. Pavers have been installed along the cartpath to allow carts to pull off so golfers can walk up to the House. The windows were installed on Thursday and the finishing touches to the outside will be pretty close to being completed by the end of the day Friday. Next week the F&B team will get their equipment loaded in and we will be open for business soon thereafter!
With the warmer more humid weather in the forecast we took some time to get our new fan installed on #6. The old fan will be used for parts as the other 5 fans on the Course continue to get older. The new fan can work at a variable speed, enabling us to have it running harder when its hot and slower at night so the green doesn't dry out too fast. It also runs smoother and is a little more quiet than the old fan. The fans on all of our pocketed greens help the bentgrass survive the sticker weather by moving air across the surface and keeping surface temperatures in check and comparable to the rest of our greens that are in much better growing environments.
This spring has been another odd weather anomaly. The wet conditions and lack of sun have actually brought on a disease known as Anthracnose to the sycamore trees. Sycamores are susceptible to Anthracnose in cool, wet conditions but not many people have seen such a widespread and intense undertaking as what is happening right now. This susceptibility is the reason why London Plane trees have come into favor instead of sycamores. Either way, as the weather changes, the trees will leaf back out and in a few weeks it will be like nothing ever happened. If only we could let the turf get diseased and wait a month for it to get back into shape, ha!!