Greeting Oak Meadow Members
June is being kind to us. We have temperate weather and less rain. These are excellent conditions to improve the quality of our greens. The best news is we currently have root structures that are 8 and 9 inches long. This makes the greens more tolerant to heat in July and August. Getting here was difficult, we had torrential rain that allowed the turf to seek water at the surface.
Following is what we did to get here.
Last fall we hydro-jected the greens. This process busted up the compacted soil at 8 to 12 inches. This spring we professionally aerated the greens at a depth of 10 inches. We removed the old cores and used them to improve the collars. We then over-seeded the greens several times. We vertical cut and top dressed when we could.
Once the rain stopped we did not turn on the watering system. Starving the greens of water. This forced the roots to go deep searching for moisture. With our soil in better condition the roots had air spaces to grow.
We are currently mowing at 0.140”. We are trying to perform the final cut with a walk behind mower. We are rolling the greens two times a week. We are experiencing an issue with our new mower. It is equipped with “tournament blades” they are thinner and should be giving us a high quality cut. They are not giving us the cut we are expecting. Toro is taking the entire unit back, putting the heads on a bench and going through the machine. This issue will get fixed.
We still have too much Poa anna in some of our greens. In preparation to rid us of this nuisance species we are over-seeding the greens now. In the heat of July you will see some yellow spots; thusly you may fear we are losing the greens. This will not be the case.
We want the Poa gone, Mother nature will do the work for us. The heat will kill the Poa. With the bent seed in place it will quickly fill in the yellow areas. Once every green is pure bent we will have spectacular turf that grows at the same rate. This will give us a smooth even putting surface. Remember bent grass tolerates heat better than Poa.
In the spring we will spray Proxy on the greens, it will limit Poa. This spring was a constant battle with rain which diluted the Proxy and washed it away.
The new practice green is coming along. The rain did wash away a lot of the seed. As of today we have seeded it three times, slowly over the next 3 weeks it will fill in more. There is nut-grass growing on the green. We will have to pull this nuisance grass out by hand.
Once the new green is established Dave Weinbaum is going to help us install a nice bunker next to the old putting green. Many thanks to Dave.
The drainage issue with 12 tee box is fixed, we are trying to get good turf established around the Tee. We will get there just give us time.
The ditch along 8 fairway has been repaired so we should have less issues with flooding.
If you have noticed there is a new bench on the practice green with my name on it. The benches are constructed from the White Oak Trees that we have harvested at Oak Meadow. They are custom made by Tom Winzer. You will see many more over the next few months. If you would like a bench with your name on let me know ASAP. Many have been spoken for.
On September 28th we will have a tournament to help pay for many more improvements at the club. The “Tough Putt Challenge”. It will be a 2 man four-ball and a 2 lady scramble. The weather will be temperate. We will shut of the water for a few days, firming up the greens. Lower the walk behind, double cut and double roll the greens. They will be fast. Please support this tournament if you can.
The money raised will be earmarked to update and improve many of our tee boxes. Examples will be #1, 13, 5, forward 3 and 6. Others as well, it just takes money.
Finally, I failed to mention that along with Mike Lorey; Billy Johnston, Jason Frost and Shane McKern all pitched in to help re-furbish the tee signs last winter. They did a fantastic job. I believe they are currently working on fixing up the larger course sign. Give them a thanks for doing this.
See you in the fairway,
Dr. David J. Moreland