Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Water Water Everywhere

"Same old song and dance." We are still locked in a battle with the elements. We've received over 8 inches of rain through the 9th of August. The torrential downpours could not come at a worse time for the golf course. The extreme heat and humidity cause disease pressure to skyrocket. When we receive excess water during times of extreme heat our turf declines at a rapid pace. Creeping bentgrass roots begin to recede when soil temperatures exceed 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Yesterday we observed afternoon soil temperatures exceeding 93 degrees. Wet soil gets hotter than dry soil and is much slower to cool overnight. Until the weather breaks, areas such as 8 fairway (pictured below) will keep getting worse. Attempts to repair these ares by seed or sod must wait until temperatures fall.

Pictured below is a view from the 11th fairway. Puddles of water, shallow and deep, can be found throughout the property.

Our heavy duty trash pumps have run non- stop all week but each night's rain seems to nullify the previous day's progress.
Course's throughout the country are feeling the pressure this year. You know it's getting bad when articles start appearing in The Wall Street Journal. Wakonda's greens are still very healthy despite the horrible weather conditions. Our success can be attributed to the new turf cultivars being grown in sandy soil with plenty of air movement & sunlight. The new turf still has roots approximately 8 inches deep while many other course's greens have less then 4 inches.

USGA agronomist Ty McClellan visited yesterday. He was impressed with conditions here at Wakonda and stated that we are in very good shape when compared to other courses he has visited recently. We will have more on Ty's visit in a future posting.