What a great time of the year, This week is turning out to be great for golf and getting a lot of work done on the golf course. I hope that you have had the chance to play a few rounds, the golf course is still in very good shape. I feel over the last 6 weeks the course is in the finest shape that we have seen in years.
This week I did raise the greens height of cut to the final height that we will be taking them into winter. This year we were at the height of .095 of an inch and as of today the greens at at .125. I did topdress the greens fairly heavily on Monday, I feel it is critical this time of the year to apply sand to continue to dilute the organic matter accumulation. What does this mean? if we continue to apply sand there is a greatly reduced chance of buildup of thatch, in doing so we will not be a need to core aerate the greens. Topdressing also directly relates to the firmness and smoothness of the greens. Even with the change of height the greens are still very smooth and pretty fast. we have been backed up a little with the core aerating of the approaches and were not able to complete the final 4 holes this week as scheduled but starting Tuesday next week we will complete them and then the plan would be to needle tine the greens. Using the solid tines this time of the year will allow for proper air and water exchange throughout the soil profile and encourage rooting.
As of last night all the fairways, tees and rough have been fertilized. This year, I changed my plans favoring apply a fertilizer now in place of a dormant application. My thinking is that the weather is favoring good growth and the plant will be able to utilize the nutrients much more effectively now. I am also hoping for a benifit of good growth in that we will not have to spray for late season dollar spot, which is always a problem here every year. There is some good research showing nitrogen can help lessen the chance for a major outbreak of dollar spot. We also verticut all the fairways this week, I am sure that you have seen a major change in the quality of the fairways over the last few months. The turf has greatly reduced graininess and is really "standing up". Starting Monday next week all the fairways will be spiked. This will leave a channel in the soil. It is always amazing how quickly roots will find these channels.
We completed verticutting the tees also this week. We are using a slightly different type of verticutter on the tees, this removes a lot of material from the tees. I feel the tees are much firmer now. I will core aerate the tees in the early spring next year.
We finally completed the sod work around the tree on #2. I feel this is a major improvement then the rough that was around the tree, I will post a before and after photo soon.
I look forward to seeing you on the course in the next few just about prefect days ahead.