Friday, May 27, 2011


A long time ago I learned that being optimistic, as opposed to pessimistic has a lot of advantages. And perhaps more importantly, you'll have more friends because people want to be around positive happy people more than they want to be hanging with whiners and complainers that have nothing good to say. But having said that, I also try to be a realist. I don't believe we can be true to our family and friends, or successful in our jobs if we are oblivious to the truth. And this spring has been a bit of a test!
So, without complaining, lets look at the current spring conditions.

Wet is a bit of an understatement. We have recorded just over 4 inches of rain since the 16th of May. And if we look back in our records to April 10th, we have recorded over 9 inches of rain.....................Awesome EH? At least the aerification healed quickly........right?

What a difference a year makes. A very quick comparison to the spring of 2010 for a second.
Last year, in the first 8 days after we pressurized the irrigation system, ( which is in the first week of April) we had already put out more water (144,271 gallons more) onto the golf course than we have for this entire spring. With only a few days left in May, we have put out 343,950 gallons, compare that to 4.99 Million gallons at the same time last year!
But........... I'm NOT complaining! It's still way better to be wet........... than dead, whether you are a human...........or turf grass!

And you know what else? It wasn't that many years ago that I sat through meeting after meeting hearing about how lousy the rough was. members won't believe this, but if you were here before 2005, you know! We talked a lot about how much it would cost to totally tear up the rough and re-sod everything to try to get the turf thicker. I remember saying, "Once we get the double row irrigation system in, lets feed it and see what happens". It took a while to get the funds approved to buy the fertilizer, but we did!
Funny how we don't hear that song about lousy thin rough anymore.

And between the thick rough, and the wet conditions, we have actually had to push mow areas that are too soft to get the mowers on.

Good thing Steve was in a good mood when I sent him out to start push mowing 40 acres of wet rough. Some areas in fairways will have to be mowed with walker tee mowers set at fairway height if things do not improve early next week.

Now I know what is on your mind. You show up to play golf only to hear "NO CARTS TODAY"!

And your a little Pis........I mean, disappointed. But you throw the bag on your shoulders and head to the tee. You hit a half decent drive, and start sludging through the slop we are currently calling rough.

A few holes into your game and your thinking, Man I could use a beer...............but that damn Superintendent said "NO CARTS".............which also means no bevy BEER!

But low and behold a few more holes in and what do you see? Maintenance workers...........driving carts.........and mowers..........others driving equipment blowing clippings! And you think to yourself...............WTF?..............which for you non "texting" people is short for "Whys that fine"? Well, we don't really thinks it's "fine" to be out there with the equipment in such wet conditions, but we have little choice. We are not going to get away with not mowing all these areas until thing dry and firm up. The mowers are getting jammed up with the long wet grass as it is, and if we don't disperse the clippings with blowers we'll never get through it next time we mow. But if it's OK for all my equipment to be out there, why not the bevy cart?

Well first of all we have many areas we train the staff they have to avoid, and every morning starts with a detailed meeting of where staff can, and can not go, and an update on changes to the normal procedures, but for the areas we have to go into, we have an advantage you may be completely oblivious to.

But lets look at what causes the's not the bevy cart.....specifically.......but the tires. This is a picture of the tire on the bevy cart. Right about 7 and a half inches wide.

Now if we compare that to the tires on one of my mowers, what do you notice?

This tire is almost twice as wide. It acts like a snowshoe spreading the weight out and making it float on the turf, by spreading the weight out over twice the area, reducing.........but not eliminating the damage. Think the Bevy cart is light? not even close! with all the beverages and ice it carries, it is as heavy as my large equipment.

The simple act of driving in the wrong area, has severe consequences. On a daily basis we see the damage to cart path edges where people don't keep all four tires completely on the path!

This area at 9 green is badly damage just because tires are coming off the path slightly. The weight of the Bevy cart would do far more damage, and it has a very good chance of finding a soft spot and getting stuck up to the frame.

Here is a good example of what many areas would look like if we let carts go out in this weather.
The long range forecast is still for a HOT and DRY summer, so maybe we should enjoy the cool wet conditions while we have it.

And finally, The large Siberian Elm which was removed from the east side of the 7th red and yellow tees has left a lack of protection for members who use these forward tee to hide behind. I encourage everyone to take the courtesy cart to the back tees while people are hitting. We have put up a safety screen in the short term. Our plan is to plant a number of trees back into the same general location sometime this fall which will regain the barrier we had.

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