Friday, December 8, 2017

Winter Report 12/08/2017

With winter coming upon us these last few weeks, the crew has been working very hard on some projects around the course. These projects have continued our plans of getting around to repairing and renovating our bunkers. We started this process a few years ago and are continuing this trend into this winter. We have completed two greenside bunkers on hole number 6 and a greenside bunker on hole number 12.  We focused on these three bunkers specifically because these bunkers were deep and in much need of repair. Our process included raising the clay floor of these bunkers to make them less deep and also clean the drainage. Below I will chronicle the process we took on hole number 12.

First we removed all of the old sand that was in the bunker, exposing the drainage as well. This particular bunker on number 12 had about 8-10 inches of sand in it. This bunker also had part of the face collapse and part of our process was to re-establish the shape this bunker was intended to have.

This picture with the stake helps show how deep this bunker was from the lip. These green and white stakes are approximately 9 inches tall. As you can see in the picture, the lip is still about 2-3 inches above the top of the stake. Because of this difference between the floor of the bunker and lip is why we are raising the floor in this bunker. The discrepancy between the lip of the bunker and the floor makes it difficult to keep the sand raked up on the edges.

Here you can the guys bringing in dirt to start shaping the collapsed face and raise the floor. We brought in roughly 12 tons of dirt into this bunker to raise the floor to the correct depth.

This is the new floor base of this bunker after the dirt work had been completed. You can see we shaped the dirt for sod to establish the shape again, as well as bringing the floor to the correct depth. After this was completed, we started to trench in the drain line. Once the drain line is installed we fill with pea gravel.

After covering the drain tile with pea gravel, and before adding our bunker sand, we installed new zoysia sod along the collapsed face. Bringing the shape of the bunker back to its original design.

Here is what the bunker looked like with new sod installed and the drain tile covered in pea gravel. The final step was to bring in the bunker sand and spread uniformly at a depth of 4-6 inches, USGA specifications.

Here is what the final product looks like! The boys worked very hard on the three bunkers we completely renovated. It took two days per bunker to compete and we are very proud of how each bunker turned out.

We thank a strong and supportive membership for always appreciating and helping to provide the materials and man power to continue to provide improvements to the golf course.

Carter DeMay, GCS

Friday, August 11, 2017

Irrigation Main Line Repair

Starting on Wednesday August 9th, we broke ground on repairing an 8 inch irrigation main that feeds holes 12 through 16 tee on the course. This main line is the only source of irrigation water to those holes, and was leaking terribly. We took advantage of the weather break we had in August to turn the irrigation system off to make this repair. With the help of Houska Inc., this repair was finished in 2 days and we backfilled the hole on August 10th. Below are a few images of the repair.
Our preliminary dig to locate the 8 inch main

The first exposed T junction by the fusion of PVC and poly line

Close up of the PVC and poly junction. This is where our leak was in the line.

Post fusion of new junction to go from poly line to PVC

Final product photo. Two large thrust blocks to prevent movement in the pipes and junctions.

Angle number two of the final product.

One of the other things that needed to be taken care of during this repair, was keeping our greens and tees watered while the irrigation system was down. With the cooperation of our clubhouse staff, we were able to use ice from one of the ice chests to put on our surfaces. Putting piles of ice down on the surfaces allows for a controlled release of water to the hotspots on these surfaces.

Drew spreading ice on hotspots on #9 gold tee

The amount of ice needed to keep hotspots hydrated

Friday, July 14, 2017

Greens Venting 7/14/17

If you played golf on this gorgeous Friday in July, you may have noticed that many of the greens had aeration holes in them. We started to do a summer venting on our greens this morning. Venting is a solid tine aeration with a 1/4" tine. We do this throughout the summer to allow gas exchange to take place in the rootzone on the greens. In the high humidity and high temperatures that we get here in the St. Louis area, allowing the putting surfaces to breath makes a tremendous difference. Here is a good saying to help understand what this process means to the greens:

"You stop breathing, and I'll stop drinking water. Let's see who lasts longer."

Tommy running the aerator on the putting green first thing this morning.

An overhead view of the amount and how small the holes we put in the greens.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Course Update 5/6/17

View from #16 Ladies tee

The last week of April went out with a bang and left us with some things to clean up. The golf course was closed from Friday April 28th until yesterday May 5th at 1:00 PM. In the at time, we experienced days of rain accumulating 10" of rain. Needless to say, there was water everywhere on the golf course. Thankfully, there was not any damage. We lost a tree due to oversaturation in the soil and the tree uprooted. The tree (pictured below) was the "leaner" on number 4 that played into the golfers second shot into the green. The shot now opens up tremendously and allows for a very reachable par 5 in two shots. Clean up started middle of the week and progressed greatly, the golf course is open to play to day on both nines for the first time in a week.
Easton investigating the water level on #2 Fairway

Tree on #4 Fairway

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Final Greens Aeration Update

Easton is really looking forward to this update on greens aeration. He is very excited to announce that all greens are completed and have been aerated! We will be continuing to do some work on them to promote the new growth and heal the greens in from this process. There will be fertilization happening in the coming days, weather permitting, as well as more topdressing to keep the greens in a playable state and to fill any remaining holes. Many thanks to all the membership and the rest of the Old Hickory staff for the patience and cooperation with our staff. We completed aeration in three days, which is extremely quick!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Greens Aeration Update #2

Easton is VERY proud of how hard all his coworkers are working to get this springs greens aeration completed! After two days of aerating, we have completed 14 greens which includes all of the front nine greens. Today, the back nine will be closed and the crew will be finishing up the rest of the greens. We will be completed with the aerating process after today, which is three days of aerating. Thank you again to our membership for being patient and cooperative with us during the very important and much need process. Also, more thanks to the rest of the Old Hickory staff for their cooperation as well!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Greens Aeration Update

Easton wanted to give everyone an update on our progress with greens aeration after the first day this morning. We had a beautiful day to work on greens yesterday, setting a record high for the time of the year. The guys worked their tails off and were able to get EIGHT greens completed yesterday! We aerated and topdressed numbers: 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 9, and 18. As well as the putting green by number 1 tee! Our plan for the second day of aeration is to finish the front nine greens by going to numbers 3, 7, and 8. We may also get number 17 finished if time a lots for it. Thank you to all the membership for your continued patience during this very important process, as well as, the support from the rest of the Old Hickory staff!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Important Notice!!! Greens Aeration will Begin on March 20!

Although this past weekend didn't make it feel like it, spring arrived fairly early this year. With early arrival of spring, comes early arrival of some of our basic cultural practices here at Old Hickory. This notice to get word out about our greens aeration beginning on Monday March 20. Below is a video from the USGA on why superintendents and golf courses aerate the greens. Also in this post, is an article from the USGA giving another explanation to the importance of the process and why it needs to be done to ensure we keep good, healthy turf on our greens.

Why Do Golf Courses Aerate So Much?

Please enjoy the literature in this post! I also hope that it helps you understand why this process is so important for the golf course!

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Bentgrass Tee Aeration

On March 6 we started aeration of our bentgrass tees. This is a very important process to remove some of the thatch layer to help promote healthy root growth. We are taking a 5/8" core at 2.5" interval that are 3" deep. We do this on tees in the spring and the fall.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Granular Pre-emergent Part 2

With the soil temperature approaching an average of 50 degrees Fahrenheit, we have accelerated our efforts in getting our pre-emergent down. We use this machine to applicate in the majority of the golf course. Pictured: Tom Salvo and Assistant Superintendent Ryan DeGrendele.

Granular Pre-emergent Application

It's the time of year for prevention of weeds! We've finished our sprayable pre-emergent in fairways/zoysia areas, so now we have moved to our granular in the rough/tall fescue. We start by walking our tee surrounds to better control our throw. This pre-emergent helps to control the germination of crab and goose grasses, as well as some broadleaf weeds.

Monday, February 27, 2017

New irrigation #7

The boys are doing a great job of getting our new irrigation line put in on number 7. The old line had been removed from lake bank repairs this winter. 340 feet of new pipe and four new heads are getting put in today.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Winter Dessication Prevention

With the rise in temperatures and wind in February this year, I felt this was a good time to share the importance of water management during drought conditions. Without significant precipitation in the last four to five weeks and one of the dryer winters my staff and I have experienced in some time, I would recommend reading the following article posted by the USGA on winter desiccation and water management throughout the year.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Dormant Zoysia Round-up Application

The boys started our dormant zoysia application yesterday. This application cleans up any remaining weeds and that pesky Poa Annua in the dormant  zoysia. Along with herbicide, we also apply a pre-emergent to prevent new germination of weeds. Today and yesterday we targeted green surrounds and greenside bunkers. The rest of the week will be fairways and fairway bunkers.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Great day for golf!

When the forecast says a high of 65 degrees and it's already 50 at 8:00 AM, we let them out early! Everyone enjoy this beautiful January day!

Friday, January 20, 2017

First Greens Mow of 2017

With the projected forecast this weekend, we are mowing the greens for the first time in 2017. This will "get the fuzz off" as we like to say; giving a smoother and truer surface to putt on.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Employee Appreciation Dinner 1/8/17

A picture of a few of our "Men of Turf" from the Employee Appreciation dinner last night. Thank you for all the hard work you guys do, not only for me but for the club itself. It definitely does not go overlooked! (Pictured from left to right: Assistant Superintendent Ryan DeGrendele, Myself, Blake Cardwell, Ron DeShon(Sarge), Genaro Garcia (G), Tom Salvo)