6 days ago, the greens were sprayed with a selective herbicide to kill off any weeds, mostly Parsley Piert and Pearlwort.
Due to the club hosting the Amateur Championships last year, the decision was made to skip our annual herbicide application. Timing is everything and now the Halford Hewitt and Lord Brassey have passed we wanted to get to grips with these invasive weeds as soon as possible.
Leading up to the herbicide application the greens were strengthened through applications of Sulphate of Ammonia, Urea, Magnesium Sulphate and concentrated seaweed liquid. This meant at the time of the herbicide application the turf was growing healthily and in the best position to fill any gaps left as the weeds die.
As we can see from this photo the weeds are very small, and, with the addition of aeration, topdressing and further light fertiliser applications, we can continue to improve the surfaces.
The definition of a weed is a plant that is growing in the wrong place. Although this weed is similar to a very fine grass, it has no place on our greens, Pearlwort is a perennial mat-forming plant with narrow leaves and waxy to the touch. Pearlwort can become a troublesome weed when allowed to spread and establish in turf.
In this photo the weed has begun to lose its colour indicating that the herbicide has started to take effect.
This week, Royal Cinque Ports hosts the Halford Hewitt. With a total of 640 competitors it is the largest amateur golf event in the world. Every day during competition the greens were hand cut at 4mm and rolled directly after. Green speeds of 10′ 4″ on the stimp meter were achieved, which is optimum for links greens. New Pedestrian mowers are due to arrive soon, this will allow us to carry out our preferred technique of greens mowing more often.
In this picture is Links Superintendent Chris Barnard.
This week saw the first outing of the new Toro 3550 fairway mowers. The club has purchased two of these mowers which are currently set at 9mm. The quality of cut, clip rate and finish is far superior to previous machines. In the near future the clippings will be collected helping to bring the fairways up to the same standard as the approaches. From now on we will be mowing fairways and surrounds in one. The 3550 is the lightest fairway mower on the market and has a gentle footprint by using 3 wheel drive and slick tyres rather than treaded.
By using two fairway mowers we can cut every fairway on the course in front of the golf, this benefits the greenstaff and golfers alike.