When Greenkeepers fall out of love...... How is your course this year?

Slab

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Nov 20, 2011
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Port Louis
Considering the amount of money currently pouring in to the club, the course is rammed in a morning and still only allow four balls after 1pm. The greens, which I consider the most important bit, are poor on the back nine. We have USPGA spec greens so they drain amazingly well, but OMG are they poor. If they spent some money on them instead of having tractors with blowers on blowing grass cuttings from fairways the place would be much better. Oh and cut the grass in the rough. We're not here to mess about looking for our golf balls. It should be long enough to punish poor shots but not to loose your golf balls and hold up play!
Re highlight; I've always wondered, what does that actually mean?
 

Robster59

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Aug 7, 2015
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Newton Mearns
We're just coming to the end of our second year with our new head greenkeeper. He came from the same role at Trump Aberdeen and he has transformed the course. He has brought enthusiasm, good team management and more modern ideas than our previous head greenkeeper. As a result there is a general concensus that the course is looking better than it has done for years, despite being on reduced staff at the start of the year. They've rebuilt two greens, put in more drainage, profiled the fairways and got the greens into excellent condition.
The rough is heavier in places but that's due to the green staff prioritising the tees, fairways and green. Notwithstanding that, our head greenkeeper still apologises to members it should be better but that's due to his own high standards.
So overall, I'd say that we're in a really good place.
 
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Foxholer

Major Champion
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Nov 16, 2011
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Wasting away again in Margaritaville
Our greens are fabulous!
Rest of the course is really good too - except, understandably, for bunkers which are not being raked and pick/place is in action. Bunkers have actually been the one area I'd rate as 'not good enough' so not really an 'added' issue.
We hosted one of the Rose Series Ladies tournaments and comments were very complimentary.
 

Depreston

Club Champion
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Feb 25, 2017
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ours is crap tbh

about 6 of the greens have what looks like that fungus ... tee boxes are a clip too different length grass in patches and the 6th fairway is a joke majority of it should be GUR
 
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Jul 31, 2015
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Considering what has gone on and up until the last week or so we have had no rainfall in Suffolk our course is in great condition apart from the bunkers. The guidance around (non) use of bunker rakes and asking folks to smooth with foot or club, which simply doesn't work, has resulted in them being an absolute mess. Even a local rule allowing relief from a footprint doesnt help much.

Our greens are great....little bit slower than possibly expected but the greenkeepers cant shave them down to the bones in this hot weather....but they run smooth and true.

No complaints other than the bunkers....but I expect a lot of work to be done on them in the coming months, including the filling in of roughly 2 dozen of them!!
 
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Jul 28, 2018
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Mass Exodus at one golf club I was previously a member at, all the greens destroyed by leatherjackets. Never been an issue before but with lockdown and fairly new owners putting too tight a grip on essential course maintenance I feel the head greenkeeper was past caring and I believe simple steps that could have been taken to prevent this were not considered likely due to lack of enthusiasm as a result of all the hurdles they were facing with faulty machinery, and no budget. I know certain pesticides can't be used now which doesn't but other greenkeepers have sweated them out from what i've seen.

The new owner seems to think the membership renewals are just a bonus to funnel towards his hospitality orientated goals and no money needs re-investing into the course itself. Instead clubhouse re-furbishment is underway and a marquee structure was built just in time for lockdown in readiness for 2020 hospitality season which was scuppered. Been at least 5 dozen people move to other courses, some not bother joining anywhere and other grin and baring it. In an attempt to funnel money into the club the Captains charity last year raised half funds for re-investment into the course and half to the air ambulance.

The portion for the club has been fully spent on a mini-bus and a lodge which is being fronted as a 'half way house'. Both which support the owner and his hospitality focussed efforts which rubbed many up the wrong way. Especially when it was previously hinted this would go on much needed items for the greenkeepers which would help tidy up the course.

The course at best has been ok over the years but mostly a bit rough around the edges, I was there for years for the craic with good friends and banter rather than the quality of the course which other memberships were reserved for. This has been lost it seems, even down to the pro leaving and members giving their time voluntarily to man the shop and take money from unsuspecting green fees which have been keeping the course busy as no members even want to play it due to the poor state.

Shambles.
 

jim8flog

Journeyman Pro
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May 20, 2017
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Yeovil
Consisering that the course was closed for 6 weeks with just 2 greenstaff doing essential maintenance,
only another two allowed to join them for a few afterwards and only back to a full compliment a few weeks ago,
the total lack of rain until last week,
the water pump failing in the bore hole with the replacement having to come from Italy so only essental irrigation for a few weeks.

All in all I think the greens staff have done a wonderful job.

One thing they cannot control is the bird damage on the greens and the shear number of unreplaced divots. The members normally take out divot sand and seed bags to repair them on way round but they are banned under covid rules.
 

GG26

Challenge Tour Pro
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Aug 3, 2015
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1,254
Our place is in great condition, apart from the bunkers which I understand are a project down the line. Our head green keeper joined early last year and has great enthusiasm and has made a number of improvements.

Was told last week by a member of a more prestigious club locally that our place was in much better condition than theirs.
 

jim8flog

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May 20, 2017
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Yeovil
Mass Exodus at one golf club I was previously a member at, all the greens destroyed by leatherjackets.

.[/QUOTE

It is not the leather jackets themselves but the birds digging them out to feed on . Going to be a problem on lots of course because the chemicals that were used to kill the leatherjscket grubs have now been banned.

We are trying a 'mechanical' method at the moment. The green is cover by a tarpaulin the night before which makes the grubs rise to the surface. In the morning the tarp is taken of and all the grubs are bushed up and discarded well away from the green.
 
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Jul 24, 2012
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I think our traditional Members Club course on Surrey/ Hampshire Borders is in splendid condition - I have no complaints whatsoever and I’m not hearing any from other members I play with - though I am sure the complaints will be somewhere with some. That’s said I can’t compare relatively as I haven’t played anywhere else local or otherwise all year. We have some high standard local competition (Hankley, Camberley Heath, Hindhead, Liphook) so comparisons are always going to be challenging in any case.

We are lucky having invested in fairway and tee watering many years ago and we are 2/3 the way through rebuilding every bunker on the course as well as building some new ones and taking a couple out. The new bunkers look great; they visually change much for the better the look of some of the holes and add new challenge on quite a few others.

We changed head greenkeeper a few years ago. The previous incumbent was essentially a ‘soil and grass scientist’ - almost obsessed with getting the subsoil and grass perfect and some would say less concerned about the look and presentation of the course - though it has always been good. The new guy (the previous head assistant) is fortunate to be able to build on the excellent work his predecessor did under and on the surface to really push on with what we actually play. We part furloughed the greens team so a skeleton staff were able to keep on top of things and so have got back to good really very quickly.

So happy golfer. Next up when funds permit - dealing with the part of the course that occasionally suffers from water logging and flooding. Plans are afoot.
 

Slab

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Port Louis
Thanks to those posting info on the usga greens
On thread topic, different season here but I've only played three courses since lockdown ended, two are European tour courses and third (new build) probably will be
All are in great condition, prob better than usual for the time is year due to no tourists
Playing Ernie els sig course and ET venue tomorrow and I expect it to be in tip top condition from practice area to 18th green, manicured fairways and fast greens
 

Traminator

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Apr 6, 2020
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Thanks to those posting info on the usga greens
On thread topic, different season here but I've only played three courses since lockdown ended, two are European tour courses and third (new build) probably will be
All are in great condition, prob better than usual for the time is year due to no tourists
Playing Ernie els sig course and ET venue tomorrow and I expect it to be in tip top condition from practice area to 18th green, manicured fairways and fast greens
You probably play on USGA greens I'm guessing.
 
Thread starter #38
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Aug 27, 2020
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Hartley Wintney
our general manager likes to utilize the term 'unprecedented weather' when it comes to challenges about course condition. One wonders how many dry and hot summers and wet winters consecutively constitute 'normal' instead of 'unprecedented' ? i always think a decent course plan incorporates drainage/irrigation improvements rather than trolley stores, changing room carpet replacements and the like. its a difficult balance.

interesting that many posters share the slightly longer/slower greens this year. a deliberate ploy to protect the greens for the only summer not full of competitions and pro ams etc?
 

davidy233

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Jul 16, 2009
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The Tayside Riviera
interesting that many posters share the slightly longer/slower greens this year. a deliberate ploy to protect the greens for the only summer not full of competitions and pro ams etc?
Wish ours had been left a bit longer/slower - putting has been worst bit of my game this summer - and it was fine first week or so back before they got them up to normal speed.
 
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