Hyde Park Est. 1909, A Donald Ross Design

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Zoysia Grass and Tropical Storm Bill

The recent humidity and now moist soil conditions has sent the Zoysia grass in high gear. The new Zoysia on the approaches of holes 4,6 and 8 are coming in quite nicely. We are close to the regular mowing heights on 4 and 8. The approach on 6 will take a little longer because of the difficulty mowing the steep slope. The staff continues to sand topdress these areas to firm and smooth.

The new Zoysia has come along way since being laid dormant last fall. As noted, in the photos below.

 

It generally takes about a full growing season for new Zoysia grass in this area to play and look like the existing fairways

Establihed Zoysia at Hyde Park
TS Bill

With an inch of rain this week, the soils are becoming moist and in some cases saturated. The most recent forecasts have the remnants of TS Bill stretching into the Ohio Valley this weekend. It is unclear at this point how much rain will fall, but it will almost certainly impact cart rules and course status. Please check with the Proshop, club emails, Twitter and facebook for the latest on course conditions. In advance of the wet weather the staff has been busy preparing the course with:

  • Increased frequency of mowing
  • Applications of plant growth regulators and plant protectants
  • Sand Topdressing to tees and greens

The forecast next week does not look promising with more rain hot and humid conditions. The staff will be busy with venting of the putting surfaces to dry them out depending on what Mother Nature throws at us.

Thank-you

Pat O'Brien

Grounds Superintendent

 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The Heat is on! Keep Cool.

The past week has been very hot, humid and most likely it is going to get wet! Many of you know from our conversations on the golf course or on the putting green I prefer the playing conditions to be on the drier side of the continuum for both playability and plant health. We can always add water, but it is very difficult to take it away, unless there is adequate drainage. Saturated soil conditions reduce the amount of oxygen available to the root systems. Water, is also an excellent conductor of energy, when soil temperatures rise, the root systems begin to slough off and the plant becomes ineffiecnt at uptaking the necessary water and nutrients to survive.

Some of the tools that help us reduce stress to the plant in these challenging weather patterns include; careful monitoring of moisture in the rootzone with a moisture meter. The Grounds Staff utilizes moisture meters to determine how much water needs to be added during the course of the day based upon weather conditions and other factors. Moisture data is recorded both in the morning and afternoon with the form below and is disseminated to the staff.
 
Data is recorded using this form
Moisture Meter

The Grounds Staff on a hot day will be adding supplementary water to cool the plant, this will only take a couple minutes, please wait until they are finished before hitting you're approach shot to the green.

Some of the other practices/tools we employ to enhance turfgrass survival are:
  • Applying plant protectants to all surfaces to reduce plant pathogens
  • Use of "Turning boards" to reduce stress on collars
  • "Venting" -placing a small .250" diameter hole about 2" into the surface allowing for increased oxygen exchange

  • Fans- help circulate air, reducing canopy temperatures.

These are just a few of the key strategies we utilize to help enhance plant health. If you have anymore questions please do not hesitate to contact me.

Thank-you,

Pat O'Brien

Grounds Superintendent

 

 

Monday, June 8, 2015

The Drehs Cup

Last week the staff had an opportunity to showcase the golf course and grounds to the HP members and their guests for the Drehs Cup. This event was concieved to honor Larry for his over 30 years of service at HP as the Head Golf Professional. I am very fortunate to work with Larry and his staff, day in and day out they are the most determined, engaged and professional group I have ever worked with.

Larry Drehs

The Grounds staff did a wondeful job behind the seens to produce championship conditions for the event. The rough was dense, the greens were rolling smooth and the property was detailed. In order to produce these conditions, the staff worked very long hours, double mowing and double rolling the putting surfaces well in advance of the event. The focus is on repetition, not lowering mowing heights to condition the Turfgrass plant to remain healthy with all of the stress. In fact, the staff in the 36 hours prior to the event, mowed and rolled the putting surfaces 5 times to achieve the desired smoothness. These practices are only for tournament preparation and would not be sustainable for the Turfgrass plant on a daily basis.

The final shoot-out to determine the eventual winner of the Drehs Cup was picturesque on holes 6 and 7. The longterm tree management program was showcased with the wonderfull views from 7 tee, 4 green and 14 tees. The tree removals have enhanced turfgrass health by reducing shade but as an added bonus the topography has been enhanced with low maintenance fescues to accent the surrounding areas. It is hard to believe that HP is located in a dense urban area.

View from 14 tee before tree removal

The View from the 14th Tee During the 2015 Drehs Cup Shoot-Out
 
A view of the 7th

Thanks to the entire Grounds Staff for their hard work and determination for maintaining this property at such a high level.

Thank-you,

Pat O'Brien,

Grounds Superintendent