Greens Chairman April Update

Course update

16th April 2019

The recent cold and dry weather has held the course back in the last couple of weeks. The ground temperature has not risen sufficiently for the grass to grow and we have the familiar early spring issue of the different grass types growing at varying rates.  We have been unable to shape the course as planned yet due to the lack of growth.  If anyone knows a reliable rain dance we would appreciate you cracking on with it. Probably best if you can do it during the hours of darkness. We’ll pay for the Red Bull. The cutters are at 19mm for the fairways. Wayne assures me that this is high. The rough has been cut recently only to maintain an even height. In terms of presenting the course we have compared a couple of holes and have decided not to stripe the rough and go with a more traditional appearance of striping only the fairways.

The greens were micro tined and sand dressed between Monday 8th and Wednesday 10th April. Thank you to the members for their patience as the work was carried out. The Greens Team as always tried to keep the disruption of play down to a minimum. This treatment is often not noticeable however, the cold weather has prevented a quick recovery from this process and some of the holes are taking longer to close up. To compound the issue further the cold weather has also prevented the Greens Team from using the watering system to good effect. The weather is forecast to warm up in the coming days and with a much warmer outlook we will soon see a rapid improvement to the greens. Further treatments to the greens will occur during the season. We will of course keep you informed so you can plan your golf accordingly.

Last Monday a company came to the club to demonstrate a machine which could be used to scarify the fairways, pick up leaves and top off long grass prior to the winter. It appeared to be a very useful machine but we decided ultimately that the money could be better spent elsewhere. Our fairway mower is due for renewal and it is only the fitting skills of the Assistant Head Greenkeeper Dip that has kept it going for so long. Just to give you an idea of cost a decent refurbished fairway machine could cost in excess of £20,000 whereas a new machine could be in excess of £35,000. No wonder Valda the treasurer winces every time we turn up at the office.

Thank you once again to our gardeners Andrea Robinson, Sandra Gilmour and Peter Robinson. The knowledge that Andrea and Sandra have about plants is fantastic. Over recent months they have kindly purchased some plants of their own accord which they have donated to the club. If you can help in any way please speak to them.  I know Andrea had said George was going to donate a tin of stain so Peter could spruce up the outdoor furniture around the clubhouse. I’m notquite sure if he was going to stand and watch him do it. The hanging baskets will arrive soon from The Shaw Trust at Seaham. This always enhances the clubhouse appearance during the summer months and additionally helps support a worthwhile charity.

The ditch crossing in front of the 10th green is to be developed with plants. We hope to return the ditch to a genuine penalty area once more and improve the appearance. Bulrushes and reeds were mentioned alongside other types of suitable foliage. Tony James came up with the original idea to improve the ditch using plants and has decided to take a lead on this one. His original plan included a conservatory in front of the 17th tee but we have managed to talk him out of this. Kind donations to pay for the plants have already been received from Davie Hanson, Dale Froud, Paul Crawford, John Huscroft, Dave The Chef, Davie Pringle and David Naunton.

The next Greens Committee meeting is on Thursday 18th April 2019. If you would like to bring anything up prior to that please get in touch with one of the following people;

Wayne Ingledew (Head GreenKeeper)

John Ellison (Greens Chairman)

Dave Bryson (Captain)

Ian Baxter

Dave Pringle

Christine Bell

John Walvin

Enjoy your golf.