The Dwarf Ryegrass tee on the back tier of the range tee is now ready to get torn up on Sunday by 72 of the worlds top golfers. It is a bitter-sweet moment after producing this surface from almost nothing. Dwarf rye grass really works on this tee and apart from the colour, the sward difference is as close to fescue as you will get.
In the centre of the photo you can see the new yardage post. All of the distances to the coloured posts on the range are measured from here.
After a long dry spell the course has turned very brown. Mother nature stood in at the weekend and after 4mm of rain there appears to be an instant return to colour to many of the fairways. An application of wetting agent was applied a week ago which will help distribute the water more evenly through the profile. It also helps water to stick to some of the higher spots and crowns on the fairways.
In this next photo we can see an area on a green deliberately missed to demonstrate change in surface tension. you can clearly see that the wetting agent has pushed the dew into the canopy as opposed to beads of water forming on the plant
In May of this year we were joined by Greig Easton from Fife, Scotland. Greig was a Course Supervisor at The Castle Course, St Andrews where he spent 10 years building the course from a strip of farmland and developing the land into what is now one of the best courses in The British Isles. Greig has a wealth of experience including working in Germany and Holland, he also has extensive irrigation knowledge which will be a great asset to the club. Greig is looking forward to working with James and the team to raise the standards even higher at Royal Cinque Ports and we are all delighted to have him on board.
High winds have helped dry any sand applications instantly. Greens were dressed and spiked with an 8mm solid tine to a depth of 3″. As well as allowing air to penetrate the profile, the holes also allow sand in to do its job of diluting organic matter.
Aeration is a vital part of turf health and by using 8mm tines we do not cause any disruption what so ever to golf. We always try to undertake aeration on a monthly basis.
In order to cause as little disruption as possible to both golfer and greenstaff we have opted this year to dress with a ‘little and often’ strategy. It is planned that every 2 weeks we try to put down around 7 tonnes depending on weather and competitions. The more sand the better as this helps smooth the surface and keeps organic matter levels in the top 20mm of the profile to a minimum. This is an area we are working very hard to achieve. In the past dressings were dragged and brushed however with such a light dusting the roller does a great job of vibrating and pushing the sand into the canopy. The surface is then playable.
Ernest Doe were very kind to loan us this brush as a demonstration to our greenstaff and also the members to the benefits of brushing. We really try to push fescue on the greens here and as a consequence more aggressive techniques of refining and organic matter removal such as verti cutting are discouraged. This is no ordinary brush. the yellow bristles are very stiff fibres that adopt a more rake like action, pulling dead material out of the sward and pulling up and fat, puffy bentgrasses that lie flat. After using this brush our cutting yeild increased by 300% this goes to show how much more grass we were removing, as a result green speeds increased and there was in improvement in ball roll. Hopefully in the near future we can purchase this brush and it can be used on tees and fairways to produce fantastic results.