Friday, June 26, 2009

Rainy Day's

What a wet June. So far this month we have received 3.9 inches of rain on the course. This is after the storms on the 23rd and 26th. Weather records for Denver go back to 1872 and so far this has been the wettest June since 1970. The normal averages for precipitation in the month of June are 1.3 inches. To bad we can't save some of this rain for July or August.

# 8 Mountain course after a downpour

We use five rain gauges placed in different areas of the course to judge the amount of rain we receive. Some times there is no rain on the mountain course but over a inch on the valley course. These rain gauges helps us with watering later in the week, some of the course will be watered and other areas will not.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Heat is on !

With below average temperatures and above average rain fall in June the first day of summer brought us the first heat of the year, 90 degrees plus. What a change is just a few short days. So far in June the course has received roughly 2.4 inches of rain with a average temperature of 58 degrees, and even a frost in early June? With the oncoming heat you will see many hand waters on the course as well as some roller basins and misters. We Use these localised watering practice's to stretch out our normal water cycles to 4 to 5 days. Conserving our most precious resource water!

Hand watering a collar

Misters on rough perimeter

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A worms life

Earthworm castings on golf course fairways and tees is a challenging issue for many golf course superintendents. Casting occur when worms ingest soil and leaf tissue to extract the nutrients. Then in the evening the worms emerge from their holes to deposit the fecal matter or castings as small mounds of soil. There currently are no chemical controls for worms and we wouldn't want to kill them any way because they are beneficial to the soil (natural aerification). The problem is the castings disrupt the turf surface and aesthetic value. There are some cultural practices that help limit the worm castings. One is sand topdressing, the worms do not like the sharp angular edges of the sand on their skin. The worms simply move to a different area. The worms also do not like acidic soil a simple application of a acidifying fertilizer has been known to help.

Worm castings

Topdressing a tee

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Wild Flowers

This season we have numerous wildflowers, many of the species are native but some have been seeded by us over the last few years. The mild wet weather in May and June has made germination possible. Enjoy the beauty now because next year there might not be as many.

Some of the species that you see on the course are as follows.

Indian Paint brush
Blue Flax
Rocky mountain Penstemon
Perennial Lupine

Greens Speeds

The Stimpmeter is a device used to measure the speed of a golf course putting greenby applying a known force to a golf ball and measuring the distance traveled in feet.
The device is an extruded aluminum bar, 36 in long and 1.75 in wide, with a V-shaped groove extending along its entire length, supporting the ball at two points, half an inch apart. It is tapered at one end by removing metal from its underside to reduce the bounce of the ball as it rolls onto the green. It has a notch at a right angle to the length of the bar 30 in from the lower tapered end where the ball is placed. The notch may be a hole completely through the bar or just a depression in it. The ball is pulled out of the notch by gravity when the device is slowly raised to an angle of about 20°, rolling onto the green at a repeatable velocity of 6.00 ft/s. The distance traveled by the ball in
feet is the 'speed' of the putting green. Six distances, three in each of two opposite directions, should be averaged on a flat section of the putting green.
One problem with most modern greens is finding a near level surface as required in the USGA handbook. Many greens cannot be correctly measured as you cannot find an area where the measured distance or green speed in opposing directions is less than a foot, particularly when they are very fast requiring a very long level surface.
USGA stimpmetered putting greens across the country to produce the following recommendations:
Slow greens: 4.5 feet
Medium greens: 6.5 feet
Fast greens: 8.5 feet
For the
U.S. Open, they recommend:
Slow greens: 6.5 feet
Medium greens: 8.5 feet
Fast greens: 10.5 feet

Some of the fastest greens in the world are at Oakmont where greens speeds can reach 13-15 feet