Thursday, December 30, 2010

Winter Work

Christmas has come and gone and a new year is soon to begin. Preparations for the 2011 golf season are in full swing. Though the weather outside is dreary, we are excited and working with anticipation for a successful year. People always ask us, "what do you do all winter?" Each day is a mix of equipment repair, washing, painting, sanding, tree pruning, and snow removal. Here are some of the things we have been working on in December:

Pictured above and below are flower planters from the tennis area. We are refinishing them so they will look good and last longer.

Below is a project that was completed earlier this month. The drywall on the east side of our employee break room was damaged by moisture so we replaced it. Our break room is now ready for the return of our staff in March and April.

Pictured above are our putting green cups. This year we decided to recondition cups, flags, and flag sticks rather than purchase new ones.

We have finally begun the process of pruning trees on the golf course. Winter is the best time to prune trees in Iowa. The cold weather inhibits the spread and development of tree diseases. Also, when the leaves are gone, it is much easier to see which branches need to be removed and where to make necessary cuts. All of our efforts are done from the ground using a pole saw. We can reach branches approximately 15 ft. from the ground.

When pruning trees we are looking for a few things to determine which branches need to come down. First, we are looking to remove any dead wood or grown- together branches. Second, we try to give the tree an aesthetically pleasing shape. Finally, we want to remove any low hanging limbs which inhibit a golfer's swing.

We will be leaving the limbs and branches lay throughout the course until our staff returns in the spring. Last year we were unable to do much pruning because of the near record snowfall- we have our work cut out for us this year and want to use the winter downtime to get the wood on the ground. Once our staff returns it will take just a few days to pick up all the branches and run them through our chipper between holes 12 and 13.