Assistant Links Superintendent James Bledge was lucky enough to be selected as part of a 100 strong Greenstaff and volunteer team for the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles this week. By copying and pasting this link, his exclusive pictures from the course can be found: https://www.flickr.com/photos/75427905@N08/sets/
He will also be tweeting on behalf of the Head Greenkeeper Steve Chappell from @centenaryHGK.
A layer of the new topdressing we changed to last season is beginning to build up and show in the top of the soil profile.
Continued applications on a regular basis will benefit the greens by diluting any thatch and decreasing chances of disease outbreak. It will also help in keeping the surfaces firm, free draining and smooth as is expected on traditional links courses.
By being a pure sand the topdressing material is far easier to work with as it dries more readily allowing it to be brushed into the sward with relative ease. This means less sand remaining on the surface which invariably ruins the sharp edges of the cutting units.
We’ve made an early start to the winter work and the first project was the installation of rubber mats at the 5th. We’re focussing on paths and tee platforms first to give as much time as possible for them to establish before winter.
A total of 720 mats will be laid on the 5th, 6th, 14th, 16th and 18th holes to vastly improve the worst of the paths.
After the mats are laid they require some time to settle before golfers can walk on them. This allows the grass to grow through and hold them in place. It will be a few weeks before carts and our machinery can use them.
In order for the staff and Club to progress Lee McCaughan was invited to move into a new role as irrigation technician. A links course situated in the driest region of the country demands full time attention to irrigation. Lee is very experienced in irrigation and is looking forward to attending courses and improving many areas of the course that have suffered in the past due to insufficient attention. The system requires a full inspection with any issues being addressed on a priority basis. Lee’s previous position was advertised in the International Greenkeeping magazine and received a great response from very qualified and experienced Greenkeepers. After the interview stages the decision was made to employ Lee Campany, First Assistant from North Foreland Golf Club. Lee is very excited for the opportunity to work at one of the worlds top courses and he is looking forward to progressing his career at Royal Cinque Ports.