Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Irrigation System Blow out

We spent yesterday blowing out the irrigation system for the winter.  The timing is based on our potential water needs and the onset of winter.  We were at a substantial deficit until the 4" of rain came last week. 
We use a very large compressor that sends a column of air through the system while we operate our control boxes and turn on a few heads at a time until only air comes out of the head and we then move on to the next set of heads.  The rain in the middle of the afternoon made for a miserable last couple of hours of work but what else can you do during a rain storm but blow out irrigation.  Final steps in winterizing the system will be to break down the pump station.  We have heat for the pump house but this is a preventative measure in case the heat would go out for an extended period of time due to a power outage or heater failure.  By program alone, we ran about 3.2 million gallons of water from October 1st until shutdown which is a lot of water for this time of year.  Our water budget for November took a pretty good hit due to the extra water requirments.  We had a couple tons of seed in our rough we were trying to keep alive, trees were pulling any available moisture from our rough and we were keeping some moisture to the zoysia as it was going into dormancy. 

Friday, November 26, 2010

Firewood For Sale

We are selling seasoned oak firewood to our membership for $ 50.00 per regular pick up truck load.(Pickup only at the maintenance department)  The wood is available Monday-Friday from 7:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. or on weekends by appointment only.  Small loads are also available at a reduced rate if you would like a small bundle or two or fill up the back of your SUV.  Please contact me either through email or cell phone for further information.  Your account will be billed in the usual manner.  

First snow of the season

The first snow of the year.  Around 1/2" of snow fell on Thanksgiving Day and combining the 19 degree low temperature had led to the cancellation of the Turkey Trot Tournament.

4.11" of rain over the last couple of days filled the lake and the bunkers.

We've had another break-in at the maintenance facility on Monday evening.  Damaged a number of carts, doors, and did some damage to the 3rd green.  The damage is not severe but removed some turf about 1" wide by about a 15' arc.  This area will be sanded and should heal over winter.  We are taking further steps to secure the facility and with some evidence we found after the crime and with the work of Normandy detectives, we hope to get a number of folks picked up over the next few days. 
Snow over the 10th fairway

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Fall Weather Stats/Drought conditions

Some fall weather statistics to ponder.

                                   Temps                             Rain
September                    71.3  49th warmest       3.73"  109th driest
October                         61.9  27th warmest       1.06"  24th driest
Nov                               52     Top 10 to date       .2"    Top 10 to date

The fall season(Sept/Oct/Nov) is trending to be ranked in the Top 20 warmest/driest periods on record.

I thought we might get a nice rain last night but only about .13" at our weather station.  The course is a little drier than we like to see going into winter.  Our lake level has been drawn down over the last couple of weeks due to the dry conditions.  Our lake needs to be refilled once the level of water draws down to the point just above the intake where the pump system will automatically shutoff.   Our lake is recharged with city water and or rainfall.  The draw down to our lake is limited due to the amount of total volume of water that our irrigation lake is capable of holding.  Future expansion and dredging of our irrigation lake is a part of our Master plan which would be very helpful to reduce the use of city water which we all know is expensive and is a resource that should be conserved.               

Below is a link to information from Texas A&M regarding damage that can be caused from drought conditions going into winter and cold weather/winter desiccation which can be enhanced due to dry conditions.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Anonymous Donor, rough aeration beginning

We have been in need of an aerator for our rough since I arrived in 2008.  I was able to locate a pull behind rough aerator in the last couple of months that was very reasonably priced and in great condition.  A very generous member heard of our need and purchased the aerator for us a couple of weeks ago.  Thanks to our anonymous donor for their generosity. 

The staff is beginning to pull cores in the rough this week. The soil is not overly moist so the plugs that are being pulled are not very large but they will still do some good for our rough turf.  We will be dragging the cores to try to break them as much as possible but I am sure there will be some remnants still left in the rough that will ultimately break down during rains we receive over the next few weeks.  

I am out of the office this week but will be getting some pictures posted in the next few days of the aerator and the work that is being accomplished.  We are going to try to make at least a couple passes through the rough before winter and at least one in early spring which should help our rough become less compacted and have the ability for water to penetrate the surface of the turf. 

We are also beginning our late fall application of fertilizer to our rough which will allow the turf to grow slightly and strengthen its roots before winter.  The slow release part of our fertilizer will be available next spring for our rough to fill in and grow into early summer.  The thicker the rough is in the spring, the better its ability to slow down the bermuda grass that is laying and waiting for warm weather to arrive.