The Turf Scouting Report for April 23 is available. Here is a link.
Today and tomorrow (22nd-23rd) ComEd will be doing tree work by 2 tee and along the fence to the 3rd tee.  They will be trimming branched in the way of the power lines.  Also, they will be removing some trees on the adjacent property near 3 tee.

The cart path around 2 tee will be closed while they are working.  Carts will need to leave the path and drive along the right side of 2 tee, and use the bridge to cross over the creek to the fairway.

If you ball comes to rest in the tree limbs, it should be played as material piled for removal with a free drop within one clubs length of the nearest point of relief, no closer to the hole.

We have learned through the years that several members of our crew are very good at stone work.  Their best example yet is the bridge on thirteen that was completely done in house by our staff.  The bridge on hole 1 also displays their work.  Today the task was to create a fire pit off of the back porch by the Pump Room.  Previous to today, the bushes had been removed  in the hedge to make room for the addition.

The stones that have been used are the same style as those used around the pond on 17, but are a smaller size.  The stones were dry stacked in a semi-circle next to the existing porch wall.  The pit was then lined with fabric and filled with stone.  The fabric was put in place to keep the stone from washing through the cracks in the stone during rains.  Once the stone was in place, it was topped of with sand to use as the base for the fire.

The fire pit should be functional shortly.

Today we prepared and reseeded the nursery for out fairway turf.  In late fall, a little over half of the nursery was removed to sod areas on the course.  Some of those areas included the herbicide damage on 2 approach, and several areas in the driving range fairway.

The area was stripped of any remaining sod pieces earlier in the week, then today we began tilling up the area and removing any rocks that came to the surface.

After the area was prepared, we seeded and fertilized the area, then covered with a blanket.  The blanket is in place to keep moisture on the surface for a longer period of time to aid in seed germination, and seedling growth.  After a good stand of grass is growing the cover will be removed.

It was seeded in anticipation of some forecasted help from the weather report this coming weekend.  As usual, we will keep you posted on the progress of the seed.

I have posted the most recent Turf Scouting Report from Friday, April 16.  This issue is highlighting the abnormally warm temperatures we have had recently. April 16 Turf Scouting Report.

I took this picture today of the flowers by 1 tee and had to share it with you.
You can now enjoy the fountain again as you make your way around the course.  The repairs were made to the fountain over the winter, and we got it back into the pond and running today.

Here is a picture of the fountain ready to be take back out to the pond.  It is inverted from this position when it is in the pond.  The silver casing on the top is a water proof case which houses the motor.  The motor spins a prop that pushes water through the white pipe and out the top.  The black plastic disc is a floatation devise for the motor.

The problems occurred with the waterproof casing.  The seal on the casing failed and allowed water into the electric motor, resulting in a short circuit that would trip the breaker.  The repair consisted of a new casing and seal, as well as an upgraded splice for the electrical connections.

Returning the fountain to the pond does not require much effort.  The fountain is tied to a stake on opposite sides of the pond.  One stake is by the electrical box for the fountain, the other is near the bridge.

Here, Joel and Ramon are setting the cable onto the stake under the water.  Without these cable properly connected, the fountain would spin around the pond.

The newest Turf Scouting report is available.  April 9 Turf Scouting Report

Hopefully you like the new look of the blog.  We will slowly be adding more items to this new page in hopes it is easier for our readers to follow along with us.

Our large Elm on the left side of 13 fairway is being treated for the prevention of Dutch Elm disease.  The spikes in the tree contain a product that is taken up by the tree to aid in the prevention of the disease.

Dutch Elm Disease

The devastation of this disease on the elm population is well known.  The disease is spread from tree to tree by two species of bark beetles.  Once the disease has entered the tree, the tree's natural tendency is to prevent the spread of the disease.  The tree does this by plugging the tissue that contains the unwanted pathogen.  Unfortunately, this also prevents the spread of beneficial water and nutrients throughout the tree and ultimately kills the tree.

This tree does not have any signs of the disease, this is a preventative measure to protect on of the most beautiful trees on the course.

These spikes will be in the tree for a few weeks, or until all of the product is take in by the tree.

Some more information from the University of Illinois on Dutch Elm Disease

The exterior of the clubhouse received a facelift this past week with new exterior lights.  The old lot had 2 broken lights, and all were weathered and deteriorating on the exterior surfaces.  It was a simple procedure, the new lights were able to utilize the existing mounts on the clubhouse so all that was needed was to take down the old and hang the new.


A short note on a few things on the course:

This spot is on one fairway towards the green.  This shows the most extensive winter damage we suffered.  It also shows how much more susceptible annual bluegrass is to winter damage.  The dead spots are annual bluegrass, the grass that is still alive is bentgrass.  We waited to see how much of this area would green back up and, as suspected, the annual bluegrass is dead.  We will seed into the brown areas soon.

This picture shows the recovery of a patch of snow mold on 2 tee.  Now that the soil temperatures are warming up, many of these areas will be grown in after another week.  Another picture closer up:

This picture shows our latest effort to get our heron to stand in a different part of the pond.  Here is the background on our problem bird: Blight On 17 Green

This effort involves a canoe tethered to a stake in the pond.  Our thought is that the winds will naturally move the canoe around which we hope will deter the bird from standing in that location in the pond.
One of the inside winter projects this year was to install a pulley system in the shop that better enable us to lift large or heavy objects into the storage area above the offices and break room.  Today while moving the beverage stations out to the course, we utilized the pulleys to move the stations into the back of a trailer.

The railing is removable for the purpose of moving things into the storage area.  The crew fashioned a cradle to hold the beverage station for moving.

They were able to lower the beverage station directly into the trailer for transport out to the course.

This proved to be a much easier method for moving the beverage stations around.  The beverage stations are on the course, but are not being serviced yet.
The new Turf Scouting report (April 2) is posted from the CDGA.

During the process of recharging the irrigation system, it is typical for problems to arise.  This year was no different, but fortunately we ended up with a short list of problems that need to be addressed.  Some typical problems are heads that stick on, heads that stop spinning, broken heads and leaks in the piping system. This year we had one head stick on, 3 broken heads and one leak.

Here is a picture of one of the broken heads.  The top portion of the head shoots out of the ground in spectacular fashion when the head is turned on for the first time in the spring.  Two heads put on this type of performance this week, with a head in 11 fairway being the unofficial winner for height of the projectile.  No doubt the head by the chipping green would have put up more competition had it not been for the overhanging appendage of a maple tree.  It is a possibility that there was some water left in the head that froze and cracked the head over the winter and resulted in its failure.

We had one leak in the system (that we have noticed so far) after refilling the lines.  This leak was between holes 10 and 18, behind the fairway bunker on 18.  A fitting was not installed properly and after refilling the lines this year it is likely the fitting shifted enough to cause the leak.  Most leaks in the piping system are fixed in the same manner, so here is the process for fixing a leak.

We were alerted of the leak by the river of water running across 18 fairway on Monday after filling the lines on hole 10.  We could see the water bubbling up around the head, so we started digging there.  After digging out the head, we found the leak was on the T fitting for the head.

We then cut out the T fitting.  

After cutting out the fitting, we found that one end was not inserted into the T properly.  The pipe inserted into the T fitting was not even through the gasket that seals the connection.  The arrows are pointing to where the pipe stopped, it should have been about 4" farther into the T fitting.

Now it is a matter of preparing the pipe in the ground for the new fittings.

I was able to reuse the T fitting, add a new section of pipe and join the two with a coupling.  When that is done, you turn on the water and cross your fingers.

Now the first leak of the year is fixed.
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