Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Why Is The Practice Green Closed?

The golf course maintenance staff aerified the practice green on September 7th. While the putting greens performed well overall this season, even through the difficult weather of this past summer, the practice putting green was placed under excessive stress. Simply due to its nature, almost everyone who plays a round of golf first puts on the green, the practice green is placed under extreme traffic stress on an annual basis. High levels of traffic stress lead to soil compaction and turf thinning. In order to offset this damage, the golf course maintenance staff aerified the putting green prior to the aerification of the rest of the greens in regulation.

Following aerification, the practice green was also seeded. The intent of the seeding is to introduce more desirable creeping bentgrass into the putting surface, rather than the less desirable annual blue grass, or Poa annua. The variety a bentgrass chosen for the green exhibits a greater ability to withstand the traffic that this green absorbs. Introducing new seed into an established stand of turf is a time consuming and labor intensive process. Following aerification, all cores were collected and the holes were then filled with sand. After the holes were filled, the surface was then sliced in two directions, creating a 1/8" furrow. Following the creation of the furrows, the greens were seeded with the new bentgrass variety. The greens were then swept, incorporating the seed into both the aerification holes and furrows. Lastly, the putting green was fertilized by both granular and liquid fertilizers to encourage rapid recovery and seedling growth. The putting green will reopen for member use on September 24. We ask that all members refrain from walking on the green until this time. By eliminating all foot traffic, the seedlings will stand the best chance of survival, thereby providing an improved putting surface next season. The finished product is shown below.

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