Summer solstice, long days. June is a great time of year giving us bright mornings and good growth potential. Temperatures do get up during the day with the odd warm day, but overnight temperatures are still predominately in single figures which give a fresh start to early mornings.
During the heatwave we hit 27.5c on 16 June and 30c on 17 June, couple these temperatures with a brisk wind and it was a drying spell. Our rainfall for June so far is a touch below 50mm, close to average but wind has been persistent and hence evaporation rates have been high at a time we could ill afford them to be.
Following a technical issue with irrigation infrastructure, resources were diverted away from irrigating fairways to maintain irrigation to greens and tees. This issue has now been addressed and through some very dedicated and hard work from Sam over the last two weeks we have irrigation restored to all areas of the golf course although with some niggles. Fairways were drying out quite a lot, particularly up around the top end of the course on the sandy soil but we are slowly bringing them back. We have had to play catch up on a few areas while we worked through the transition period.
We have been careful to not simply flood these areas and bring them back to highly lush, verdant expanses. I feel it is important to present the course appropriately to the current season.
We are seeing superb definition on the course as the long rough frames each hole and this will evolve and be enhanced as the season progresses. Once we move past mid-summer the long areas will start to turn golden and create a clear contrast to the mown areas which remain green. I am conscious of the penalty inflicted to wayward shots by some of the denser areas of long rough but equally so I am happy with the progress we have made over the last few years in the overall reduction of density of these areas. A-knock on benefit of a reduction in rough density is an opportunity for species diversity, particularly wildflowers which we are seeing increase in number.
In danger of sounding like a broken record, I’d like to present an observation. Monday saw the team undertake bunker management including a full rake on one third of the course and footprinting the remainder of the course leaving the bunkers presented and footprint free. Tuesday morning I was mowing fairways, starting early before play had commenced. As I would normally do I checked each bunker that I passed and my observation was that every single bunker checked contained footprints left by golfers.
See you on the course.