Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Fall 2015 and Winter 2016

As I look back at the extended fall golf season we just had, it sure was nice to reopen the golf course to our members and their guest.  We certainly had an increase in our pro shop merchandise sales, golf cart rentals, guest fees and many stayed for dinner and drinks following the bonus rounds of golf.  We were able to get our fall leaf removal finished like never before, which is an enormous help on our spring cleanup routine.  We added a drain in the cart path in that low area on your way to the 2nd tee.  We took down numerous dead trees around the edges of the property, chipped all of the brush at the end of the driving range and we even had that massive dead Ash tree east of the 3rd green cut down and removed.  All in all an A+ for golf course operations.  My only concern going into the late but abrupt start to winter was how saturated the ground was; we had 2.7 inches of rain in October, 2.5 in November and 3.2 inches in December.

It’s important for winter plant hardiness to have the grass gradually harden off slowly as it heads into winter.  With above average temperatures and above average precipitation, I’m just not sure how the plants went into the winter.  They could be very vulnerable to dramatic temperature dips when we go from a warm spell in February in the lower 40s to an arctic blast of temperatures in the single digits.  Having the surface be so saturated could result in a really high pressure for snow mold potential over the winter.  We sprayed to prevent snow mold fungus but with the high moisture levels it could be a rough spring because of that very nice but abnormal fall weather we enjoyed.