Sunday, February 18, 2018

Progress Report In Pictures

As spring approaches we are scrambling to get some things done before the grass starts growing.  Last week we got over 5" of rain so our focus shifted to things we could do with soggy ground.  Hopefully things will dry up enough for us to complete some winter weed control and some drainage work.  Bunker repairs are also high on our wish list, but conditions haven't cooperated.  The guys have done a fabulous job on tree removals, cart path repairs, and equipment maintenance.   Read on for a few pictures of our progress...

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Cart Path Repairs

Alan, Jimmy, and Richard will be sore for a few days after today's effort.  Mike is repairing the chipper so we put tree work on hold and went after some broken concrete.  As you know, cart paths are broken in many places.  We have plans to replace about 15 sections this year, but for now we did some "band aid" repairs to a couple of really bad areas.  Trees are the problem and broken paths are the symptom.  Looking forward we'd be wise to remove those trees that are soon to break concrete.  If they are within 10-15' of a path they should probably be pruned at the base.  

A post from this time last year

Roots have pushed this section of path up almost 2" on hole 3

The tree is about 12' from the path

Alan and Richard putting the pieces back together on hole 4

Sunday, January 21, 2018

A Little Walking Is Best For Now

The frozen ground is thawing out with these recent warm days.  While the ground wasn't overly wet before it froze, there are likely going to be some very soft spots as things thaw out.  Additionally, you invested a great deal of money seeding high traffic areas in the rough last fall.  Much of that seed was late to germinate and is very immature.  Traffic on turf, under current conditions, would be a bad idea.  Compaction will be magnified by the fact that the freezing and thawing have made the soils very soft.  Not wet, but soft.  For these primary reasons we are cart path only at the moment.  

The textbook would say the course should still be closed due to the frost layer beneath the surface of the greens.  I have learned over the years that we seem to be ok as long as the soil above the frost line isn't saturated.  It's not ideal to have traffic on greens right now, but the rare opportunity for golf in January is hard to say no to.  Don't let this warm spell pass without getting some golf in.  The course will be fine as long as everyone follows the rules.  

A few articles on winter golf...

Wednesday, January 17, 2018


"What do you do all winter?" pops up almost daily it seems.  I can assure you the wheels are in constant motion, but they may change direction often.  The recent trend has involved of a lot of woodwork.  It might be cutting down dead trees, repairing tee markers, building/repairing bluebird boxes, Adirondack chairs, or refinishing a piece of clubhouse furniture.  We have to race to get as much done before the grass starts growing again.  Once that time comes we switch from wood to turf.

The chipper has been eating a lot

This one was not healthy

Mike is very talented

Check out the host stand next time you're in the Harbor Club

New bluebird boxes

Ready for the course

It won't be much longer before a new family moves in

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Latest Course Update TUESDAY JAN 9th

Temperatures are going up and so are hopes for playing golf.  I'd love to play as well, but unfortunately the ground conditions are not cooperating.  Keeping the course closed for at least another day is primarily meant to save you time from getting all geared up to play only to get to the first tee and find out it isn't playable.  Trust me when I say that despite the much nicer weather, the ground conditions make golf an impossible game to play at the moment.  Additionally, any traffic on the turf would be very harmful under these circumstances.  As soon as the melting snow and rain from last night have soaked into thawing ground we will open things back up.  We will likely have to keep some holes closed for longer than others so be prepared for a partial golf course once we open back up.

Here are some pictures of our warmest green at noon today.  That is ice in the top picture and it's about 3" thick.  By afternoon it was a puddle on top of frozen turf.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Frozen Tundra

I haven't dug through the Fawn Lake record books yet, but I think a few may be getting updated soon.  I can't remember it being this cold for this long.  Single digit temperatures with high winds and no humidity can be a bad combo for grass.  We were in a very dry spell before this cold snap so the turf was already dehydrated.  The course would benefit from a nice blanket of snow, but unfortunately what we've had is not enough to do it much good.  About an inch fell last Saturday before sunrise and covered all the short grass.  It was gone in a couple of days and then last night's snow fell.  The wind has moved it around to where some places are snow free and some are a foot deep.  With another few days of frigid weather ahead it may be awhile before the course is playable.  

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Winter Mode

We are gradually working our way into winter mode on the golf course.  The leaves continue to eat up most of our time, but we are also getting the irrigation system put to bed and preparing things for the cold weather. 

When it comes to playing golf in the winter you will notice that our hole location strategy changes.  When the ground freezes it is impossible for us to cut a hole in the ground.   For this reason, and to help save labor, we are now in full Winter Hole Location mode.  There are three holes in each green (One in the front, middle, and back of each green).  We will move the flagstick regularly among the three holes.  Periodically during the winter we will cut fresh holes in each green. 

Copies of this hole location chart are available in the golf shop...