The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 15th May

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We’ve quadra hollow-tined the greens 1.5 inches deep with a 1.5cm spacing. The tine size is just 8mm so it's less disruptive to the putting surface. We top-dressed a 20 tonne (1 tonne per green) of Rootzone mix (70% sand,30% soil) then double brushed the dressing in and followed up with a cut.

Having dedicated Monday and Tuesday to greens maintenance we will now turn our attention back to the rest of the course. Cut,cut,cut. Fairways, practice areas, semi-rough, rough and tees, collars.

Full rake on the bunkers and hole change for tomorrow.

Greenkeepers’ Blog – Monday 14th May

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More hollow tining, mowing the grass which is growing at an alarming rate, and just generally keeping the course looking brilliant. It's a beautiful Monday and anyone playing this week is going to find a course in peak condition. Also, check out the arty photos from Roger! The T&P media team seems to have a rival...

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – Wednesday 2nd May

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On Monday and Tuesday we pencil tined all the greens followed by a cut and a roll. Wednesday's rain meant a bit of extra work re-raking bunkers but we're on top of things now and concentrating on getting the course ready for a busy few days over the bank holiday weekend. Very pleased to have had so many positive compliments from the members about the course condition too, we do appreciate it.

The last two photos show the new marker posts that we've now placed around the pond, and the metal ones they've replaced. This was a health and safety issue raised by the golf committee and we're happy to address such things.

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 29th April

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The work goes on, even in Friday's wet weather. We took the chance for a bit of creative strimming and gave some TLC to the greens mower units following the top dressing. The weather was a lot better for Saturday and those who played in the President's Cup reported that the course was playing extremely well. We do our best 🙂

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 26th April

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We've been working on getting good definition into the rough and fairways, and bringing some uniformity to some of the trees around the course. An early morning double rainbow was well worth a photograph and some lovely wild flowers are springing up. All in all it's really starting to look great, in time for many months of golfing fun.

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 25th April

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Some really good weather has meant that we've been almost too busy for photos and blogging, but here are a couple of images showing our work. On Monday we gave all of the greens a heavy top dressing, then a brush and a cut, with almost no disruption to golfers.

Keeping the players playing without getting in their way is always something that's important to us, so on the few occasions that we disrupt things we ask that you bear with us whilst we're making your course as good as it can be.

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 16th April

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There were two inches of rain in the early part of last week, yet we managed to keep to 18 main greens right through from Thursday to Saturday. We've been cutting the tees and greens and some rough, but a lot of the rough remains too wet to be cut. The new fairway markers are out, freshly painted, making the course look even more special.

The first photo is quite interesting, it shows just how effective the verti-drain work has been. That's a playable green despite having suffered an enormous amount of rainfall, as you can tell from the puddle.

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 11th April

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Below are a few interesting photos from Shaun, the first of which shows the hazard posts and distance markers having been painted for the new season. That alone is a pretty big job. Then we have a couple of photos showing a puddle which formed underneath the 17th fairway. The water built up with nowhere to go in the clay so Roger had to dig away some turf to relieve the pressure.

The photos of two ditches on the 2nd show just how well they deal with water. Some members have asked us if they work because they're often empty, but they most certainly do work, shifting water off of the course very quickly.

Then there's a couple of pictures of a sprinkler, which has had grass and soil gradually accumulate around it. Eventually this stops them raising from the ground and they break, so we have a special tool to cut the ground accordingly.

There's also a photo of the bunker on 18 being pumped out and whilst the pump is on the course we've also used it to empty the soakaways on the 10th and 12th holes which always need attention after so much rain. We dig soakaways at various locations around the course, fill them with stones and sink a pipe to the bottom of them. They're essentially just big buckets to take water from around the greens, but the clay soil out there means they need to be emptied as they won't drain on their own, other than in summer when cracks below ground can assist with the process.


The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 9th April

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Our greens are still benefiting from our more intensive maintenance and they're drying so much quicker after the verti-draining. They're having a cut and roll for the Seniors TUAP. Also this week we'll be bringing in the ropes and hoops and more of the grass tees will be in play.

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 5th April 2018

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Roger is on holiday so thanks to Shaun for taking photos. A bit of decent weather has helped us crack on with some work on the bunkers and with the mowers out with vengeance the course is becoming all lovely and stripey. There's a report from Jeff Mills out soon, it will be published with the next club newsletter and it contains a good amount of information about course conditions in March and plans for the coming months.

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 27th March with 2nd April Update

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The sun rose over the distant hills and Roger could barely contain his excitement. It was "Verti-Drain" day and his Instagram feed mentioned "#emotional" and "#whenyouwishuponastar". Anyway, the team got to work and despite a bit of inconvenience to the members, things are progressing very well on making our greens all kinds of lovely for the coming months.

Update from 2nd April. The combination of "proper" deep aeration and thatch removal has certainly sped up the draining process. A LOT of rain has fallen lately but we're still on main greens. The last picture shows installation of a drain on the 13th fairway two years ago.

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 24th March

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It's been another busy few days. The main job we completed was the work on the beech treese between the 4th and 5th fairways. That area is looking really tidy now. We've been power brushing the winter tees to, as well as putting out the new flags in readiness for the Captains' Drive-In. Clearing dew from the greens remains a daily task.

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – Upcoming Work

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Our blog isn't just about what we've done, it'a also about what we're going to do. So for 28th, 29th and 30th March we're going to be doing some aeration works on the course, which means the following:

  • Quadra Hollow tine all greens with 8mm tines
  • Top dress all greens with a sand/soil mix
  • Brush in the top dressing on all greens
  • Roll all greens

Golfers should be prepared for:

  • Slight disruption depending on when they play as a couple of greens may have to be on winter greens as staff work.
  • More dressing on greens than normal

Benefits of aeration/ tining are:

  • Removal of thatch build up
  • More air to the roots of the plant
  • Reduce compaction

So, apologies for any disruption caused, the work is very necessary and the greens will certainly benefit from what we'll be doing.

Greenkeepers’ Blog – 20th March – More Snow!

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Just when we thought spring was on the way we got hit with another dump of snow. This did provide a chance for some sledging though and today, as we write the blog, the snow has nearly gone.

Before "Beast Two" hit us we'd done some good working clearing the scrub from the corner of 17 and we reckon that with all of the recent work the course is going to look great and play beautifully during the spring and summer. Bring it on!

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – Wednesday 14th March

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Mixed weather recently, with 37mm or rain coming down over the weekend. We've been clearing/spiking drains, pushing off puddles and pumping out the sumps around the course. Then with some good sunshine on Tuesday we hand-cut nine of our main greens and added some lovely stripes to the ground between the 4th and 17th fairways.

Update - We've now completed the hand-mowing of all 18 greens and top-dressing is well underway.

The Greenkeepers Blog – Friday 9th March

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We've got 18 holes open on main greens, just a week after the heaviest snowfall for years. Pictures here are some efforts to clear the road and paths, a rather nice pic of the 15th, setting up for solid tining the tees and the thaw happening on the Blackdown Hills. The green with frozen snow is 14, which was one of the last to clear.

The Greenkeepers’ Blog – 3/18 – When It Snowed!

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Well it snowed and snowed and snowed. The club was closed for a few days and at the time of writing we're waiting for a final thaw so that the course can re-open.

Once we could get to the club the work began though, clearing roofs and gutters, unblocking course drains and pumping out bunkers and sumps.

We've painted a few more benches too and the ball washers are now all "good to go" for the coming season.

First job though was to cleat the road and car park, so that our members and visitors can get here, because all though they can't play golf until the snow is all gone, we wanted to get the clubhouse and pro-shop open as soon as possible.

Lots of snow in the photos, and a little graphic showing how a sudden thaw in the ground can damage grass roots.