Warmer Weather Prompts More Maintenance on the Greens
Written By Jack Creveling, Golf Course Superintendent
As weather warms up so does maintenance on the greens. Now that we’re well into the spring season, the Golf Course Maintenance team at Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club begins to do more cultural practices on the golf course greens to keep them smooth, firm and fast. This is the time of year that we begin to mow the greens in a vertical pattern to remove grain, thatch and allow for better incorporation of topdressing sand.
We vertical mow the greens in a circular fashion to allow any grain that is growing, the direction the leaf blade points toward, to be effected. This cuts into the canopy at a depth of 1/32 of an inch allowing for just the right amount of disruption for the grass.
We follow behind the vertical mowers with our normal walking mowers. This cleans the surface and removes the grass that has been cut. It also allows us to remove 20 times more grass than during normal mowing.
After mowing the greens we top-dress with sand to promote a smoother surface and to offset the organic material that accumulates in the soil.
Once the sand is dry, our last step is to broom it in to the canopy and follow behind with water. This fully incorporates the sand and allows for us to continue our normal practices on the greens of mowing and rolling with limited disruption. The end result for golf play is a firm and smooth surface. The day following this practice the green speed on the stimpmeter averages 11-feet 6-inches which is the same speed of the greens during the 2015 LPGA Coates Golf Championship presented by R+L Carriers hosted on the Golden Ocala golf course in January.
The golf course maintenance team works diligently to keep the greens in top condition for our daily players as well as those participating in the full schedule of tournaments throughout the year. Follow our golf blog to learn more about what the maintenance crew is working on.