Thank A Golf Course Superintendent Campaign

There is not a lot to update everyone on as we progress into the season. We continue to clean up the course. We added sand to bunkers. Seeded divots on tees for the first time. Took delivery of more sand as we prepare for Aerifying greens Monday, May 4th. The course is shaping up as temperatures continue to promote growth. The Tee up NE auction appeared to be a success from what I saw of the final bids. Mink went for over $300 so someone received the message and Thank You.
Speaking of thank-you's the video above came across my desk so I thought I would share it. The players here at Mink Meadows do not need the encouragement and the Members are some of the best I have ever had the pleasure to work with. There is a contest going on for golfers who participate, however and who does not like prizes?

Greening up! First Mowings

As a quick update things are progressing nicely. The saying is you cannot cheat the calendar so all though we had a slow start by a certain date everything is back to normal. The trees are budding, The osprey's are back, The turkeys too and the grass is starting to grow. Fairway Fred is back at it with the first mowing this week. We mowed tees also this week for the first time. The winter damaged areas on 3 green and the practice green do not look that much different and only time will tell whether they actually recover fully. The plugs I pulled out and grew in my office for a week were put back into the nursery and look pretty good so I am still optimistic.
4 from the left rough
3 green. Dye has not worked any magic yet
plugs from 3 green back in the nursery

Tom's are out strutting their stuff

New irrigation system computer upgrade
I spent a portion of last weekend driving to VT to help my son Josh pack up and move his belongings to a storage unit in New Haven CT. He has left Nectars night club in Burlington for a post as the stage manager of the former Paradise Theater which is being revamped and called College Street Music Hall It is right across from the Shubert Theater. He has also secured a part time job back in the golf business at Race Brook CC. Now if he could only find a place to live his mother could start sleeping again. In the move he had an old monitor that I was able to procure. With the new irrigation software we installed a map feature. The new software is area based so having the map is a great way to re-train your brain away from the old number based system.
I have looked at the Tee-up NE auction and there are certainly some DEALS to be had. It ends Monday so check it out and help support turf research in New England.

Catching up on turf conditions & Tee-Up NE

I would be remiss in my duties if I did not mention the damage we have suffered from the Winter weather. Amazingly the majority of the course looks great. I thought for sure we would have damage on fairways where we have in the past. They were under water several times going into winter and some under ice coming out. So far it look like they will be fine. The greens looked very good also as they came out of ice and snow cover. The 3rd had a small section in the middle that looked a bit off but that was about it. As the frost came out of the ground and we had a few freeze thaw cycles the 3rd and the putting green regressed. The entire right side of 3 looked dead quite frankly while the PG had only two small patches. Standard operating procedure is to take a sample (plug) with a cup cutter and bring it inside to incubate in a sunny window. If it lives you have a decent chance the rest of the area will as well.
good news after only a few days inside

bottom of picture is the plug from the nursery

under magnification there was healthy turf. another good sign
As the pictures show it looks as though the turf will recover. Never any guarantees but a good sign to see green in the sheath  under magnification and then growth after a bit of heat being inside. So what happens now for the greens? Well we could cover the bad areas and try to promote some warming of the soil or we could wait for Mother Nature to wake up and send us some heat. The forecast this week showed little sun so a cover would not gain much. Plus 3 green gets very little sun to begin with (might there be a correlation there as to why this is the only green with this much damage?) We have plenty to do still cleaning up the course and trying to get the irrigation system on so baby sitting covers is not that appealing. It would also mean a temporary on 3 and the natives have suffered enough so we will wait. If this is our only damage after that Winter I feel blessed and have very little to complain about. It is that time of year again where we enjoy the epitome of green and opulence aka The Masters. I would like to continue to plant the seed so that you all link the end of the tourney with the beginning of the Tee-Up NE golf auction. This is a fundraiser for turf research in New England. We get clubs to donate rounds of golf and then have an online auction where you the golfer get to win and support turf research.