We began our renovations on the 4th of September with the hope of boxing it off in one day. We had hired in a core collector and power brush to make the task easier. Unfortunately for us the core collector wasn’t the greatest so we had to collect the cores all up by hand, which is very time consuming. Day 1 we had 10 greens cored, dressed and brushed in.
As you will see later on in the blog through a weather graph the Tues (5th) was a complete wash out , nearly 19mm fell, which in one respect was great to wash in the dressing but on the other hand made everything else a complete nightmare.
So we went into the Wednesday with 9 greens to complete. Wet greens with wet sand was not going to be fun. We were having good success until the tines we had bought wore out with 3 greens to go, this is not normally an issue if you use them on drier greens, but due to them being sodden it wouldn’t pull a complete core out. The pic shows how the bottom of the tines have worn out. This meant we had to solid tine (12mm) greens 9,16 & 18 and the putting green.
All in all during these 3 day we got all the greens done and topdressed. We applied approximately 25, the target was 30 but due to the sand being so wet it was impossible. We overseeded on the Thurs with 30kg of bent grass seed.
Since we finished on the Thursday the weather really turned against us, making it impossible to carry out any remedial work that needed doing. The greens were only cut twice during this week because it was too wet, we couldn’t get on with the roller and more importantly we couldn’t get on with the feed because of the wind. None of the greens that needed topping up could get finished either, to be honest it was very very frustrating for the greens staff.
The last of the heavy rain fell last Thurs (14th), 5mm from midnight – 5am. Thankfully after that storm had passed weather conditions became calm, we fed the greens that morning. Granular feed ideally gets watered in, as you can tell from the graph, since we applied the feed, rainfall has been minimal!!!!
The pictures above show the before and after effect of applying the feed. These photos were taken 4 days apart, there is still a lot more feed to break down and become available to the plant so every day the recovery will get greater. Due to the weather we experienced during this work I would say we are around 5-7 days behind where we would like to be, unfortunately it was completely out of our hands.
We managed to get another 5T of sand on Tues 19th, this has helped top up the majority of the un-filled holes. For the next 10-14 days we will let nature take over in the recovery. After this period we will apply small amounts of dressing every 2 weeks whilst the grass is still growing.
We have been advised by the STRI to stop tine aeration until the end of October, this is to try to limit the amount of eggs the crane fly can lay into our greens. Because of this we have rejuvenated our very very old slit tiner, this will be used early October to allow gaseous exchange and water infiltration.
Thanks for reading, please follow us on twitter @ashtonleagreens, this will give you daily reports on the state of the course and updates of what we are doing.
We also have a facebook page, search for Ashton and Lea greens. Please like the page and ask your golfing friends to like the page, make them aware of the good things we are doing and producing.
We are now also posting pictures on Instagram, search for ashtonleagreens, you should find us.
Any concerns or opinions on what we are doing please contact us directly on email@example.com.
Thanks, Mark Shuttleworth ,(Deputy Head Greenkeeper)