This site is intended to share information relating to the management of the golf course conditioning and quality of Northmoor Country Club and the art, the science, and the factors that influence those conditions. Please visit as often as possible.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Aerification Process

After postponing our green's aerification for a week  due to ice and snow last week, we began aerifying the greens today.  The cooler weather will have a slowing affect on the recovery of the greens but these processes are necessary so that the surfaces will be healthy during the season.
Green speeds are generally slower for 3-4 days following aerification and topdressings because the sand significantly dulls the mower blades. Eventually the sand works its way off of the turf surface. 
Below are the processes that we use during the aerification process. 

Sand is spread over the green's surface 

The green is aerified.  Sand is injected into the upper end of the soil profile
The surface is mechanically brushed to spread sand into the open holes
Hand brushes are used to make sure the holes are filled level with the turf
 Excess sand laying on the surface of the green is removed using blowers

The greens are  rolled to help level and firm the surfaces.  Aerification generally softens the surface for an initial period until the holes heal and the surface firms.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Former NCC Intern Excels

Curtis Keller, former NCC Intern, is the host Superintendent at this week's PGA Senior Tour Legends event at Buffalo Ridge GC in Missouri.  It's always grand to see a former team member rise to the top of our profession.   Congrats Curtis.  Well done.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Augusta National - The Great Comparison

It's early April and many golf courses around the country are just coming out of winter.  Some are not even open yet.  But at Augusta National GC, it is Masters Week.  All golfing eyes are on the perfect golfing conditions at The National.  It is the place most golfers  envy, wish to play just one time or even visit just once.  John Morris,our Assistant Superintendent here at NCC was an Assistant Superintendent at Augusta  National for four years and played a key role in being in charge of the back nine for his four Masters.  I have  been to  7-8  Masters and there is nothing like it.   I will share a few interesting things about Augusta National that differ from virtually every private club.

John  Morris - Northmoor Assistant Golf Course Superintendent   -  4  Time Masters Team Member
My most interesting event at The Masters - I was offered $10,000 for my weekly clubhouse pass.

The Augusta National course is closed shortly after the Masters and doesn't reopen until October.
Below is a photo of a summer view of Augusta National.
Augusta National is known for their lightening fast and concrete hard greens.  Withholding water results in the wilting brown  spots you see  in the photo below.  Actually the greens are significantly more off-color and browner than you see on TV due to the television filters.  The course closes for the summer so if there is some discolored or damaged green's surface it is of no concern.  The greens may be  mowed  and rolled 6-8 times a day to get the desired conditions.  Unless it rains during the tournament, the greens are on life support by Sunday afternoon.

 Unable for the TV viewer to  see, some holes have 60-80 foot elevation changes.   This view of the  18th hole exhibits a steep uphill slope.  There is a 170 foot in elevation change from#1 tee to #13 at  Rays Creek.
  13 fairway mowers!!!!!  Most 18 hole courses have 2 to  4 of these.   The operating and capital budgets for Augusta National are not made public.  I can tell  you their budget is multi-millions of dollars beyond even the highest budgeted private club courses.  
Even with the best construction and highest quality sand in the industry, fried egg lies still happen.  Sergio Garcia's ball on the 12th hole on Friday's round this year.  
 The size of the bunkers are massive and some of the bunkers are 8-10 feet deep. Ricky Fowler #2
Each green is mowed and rolled a different number of times so it will play as it was designed based on its size, slope, contours and cupping location for the day
During the closed months of summer,  the greens often have green house type shade clothes placed on elevated poles above the greens to help shade the greens 
A number of the greens are rebuilt each year are built back to exact dimensions via use of GPS
The difficulty of the Augusta greens is staggering.  Imagine the best players in the world 3 putting from inside 4-5 feet 
Many approach shots cannot remain on the green unless the player is able to place their approach shot within a 10-12 foot circle on the green 
Lloyds of London actually does the security work for The Masters event.  If  any current ticket holder is caught selling their tickets, then that person loses their entry privileges for life.                          Tuna,  ham and pimento cheese sandwiches still cost only $1 at the concession stands

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Putting Greens Have Speed Limits Too

       U.S. Open | Washington State Golf Association           
Putting Greens Have Speed Limits Too
Putting green speeds have long been a hot topic. While there are many opinions on the subject, one thing is for certain – faster doesn't necessarily mean better. Every putting green has an architectural speed limit. When putting greens get too fast, hole locations intended by the original design can become unplayable. Here are a few things to consider the next time you think about green speed.

It will take a minute to  upload the video but please take a look.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Snow Cover

We have about 15 inches of snow cover on the course today.  This will likely result in wetter playing conditions initially in the spring when the course opens.  Let's hope for a warm, sunny and windy spring.

Tu enjoys running in the snow 


Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Dog Calendar and Course Coyotes

Many of you have come to see and know our new Border Collie- Australian Shepherd.  I rescued Tu from Orphans of the Storm shelter in Deerfield.  She is our new goose chasing teammate.
She is a huge success story.  I am her 4th owner.  She was previously simply in the wrong family environments.  She was with families with small children and she is a high energy working breed. 

The great news is she has progressed tremendously with her training.  She was also recently chosen to be the December poster pet for the month of December for a nationally published golf course management calendar. 

Last winter we received a number of calls about our Decoy Coyotes that we place on the course during the winter months to aide in goose control.  Below is a photo of one of the decoys we utilize.  We have the decoys placed near the lakes where the geese tend to congregate.  However, be aware that real coyotes do frequent the property at times.  We do implement coyote control measures but the random coyote does enter the property.  They have little fear of humans so please be careful.