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.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Extended Heat

 Excessive Heat Advisory in Effect for Chicago
       July 19th, 20th & 21st 2011 !!!!!!!!

If the weather forecast is correct, we are in for a week or more of one of the most intense weather stress periods on turfgrasses over the past 15 years. You may recall how the weather impacted courses all over the country last summer. Such iconic courses as Wingedfoot and Congressional among other actually closed for periods. You will notice a number of agronomic tasks being implemented this week to protect our turf. There will likely be many golf courses in the Chicagoland area that suffer turf loss this week due to the intense heat. Hopefully we can escape that situation here at NCC. There are some turfgrass species that simply cannot survive when soil temperature rise to extreme levels and destroy the root structure of the plant.

The photo below shows the 7 day forecast to have high temperatures in the 90s.

Extreme heat and drought are influencing factors on turfgrasses. For this reason we will be implementing a bit more cart traffic measures than normal. The photo below shows how cart traffic can damage turf if golf cart traffic is not rotated.

Below is a photo of turf under dry conditions with repeated golf cart traffic. exposure

The photo below exhibits the benefits and success of implementing cart traffic control measures.

The photo below is of new turf on the blue course last year. We put out some stakes to route traffic away from the young and stressed area.

We will put out a few stakes in the fairways in some of the higher traffic areas

During the next week we will do everything we can to provide quality and challenging putting green speeds but we will not sacrifice the health of the turf in an attempt to chase speed. This is a temporary measure and we will provide speed as soon as the weather conditions allow.

Our staff will be doing quite a bit of hand watering. Although we do have a fully automatic irrigation system, we hand water so that we do not over water the areas that are not wilting and so we are able to apply water to the exact areas that are stressed.

One of the areas where the turf wilts the quickest in on the bunker faces. These areas must be hand watered to prevent the bunkers from being totally wet. However, during the coming week in order to keep the turf alive, it will be necessary for us to irrigate the bunker faces more than normal. Some of the bunkers may play wetter than usual. We will try to keep the sand as dry as possible.

Some of the tee tops and the fairway drain lines on the newer renovated red and blue courses require hand watering during intense evapotranspiraton rates.

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