Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Saturday, August 13, 2011
If you don’t know already, this week is the PGA Championship and for me I can’t help but think about my great experience last year at the 92nd PGA Championship at Whistling Straits in Kohler Wisconsin. We can all remember what happen with Dustin Johnson two stroke penalty on the 18th hole and how Martin Kaymer won in extra holes over Bubba Watson. However, what many fans and viewers don’t see about major championships is the preparation and determination that go into managing a golf course to perform and play at a caliber to test the best in the world. Thus, I would like to share my experience with the championship to hopefully shed some light on the subject of preparing a golf course for a major tournament.
|Fly over of the Course for Television|
|Fairways being mowed|
|The Set-up behind the 18th Putting Green|
|Getting ready to mow greens very early in the morning|
|Everyone's lined up and ready to work late into the evening|
|Inside the Hospitality tent.|
|The Famous 17th Hole|
|Great Night view of the Clubhouse|
|Watching the extra hole playoff come in for the PGA Championship|
|Crowning a Champion!|
Monday, August 1, 2011
These past two months I have not only been working hard at my internship but I have also been taking a class from Kansas State University on Water Issues for Lawns and Landscape. This class has been very interesting as I have learned a lot about many different topics around the use of water in turfgrass situations. If you don’t already know, water is a precious natural resource and with only less than 1% of the world’s fresh waters available for use today, we as turfgrass managers must be educated and responsible for how much water we apply to our turfgrass systems. The application of water through our irrigation systems is one of, if not the most important, responsibilities on the golf course for the health of the turf. Water fuels our world, we wash our clothes with it, we clean our bodies with it, we grow our food with it, and most of all we drink it. All living organisms on this planet must have water to survive and with such a limited resource to fuel our planet, we must use it properly.
As talked about with many magazines and articles across this industry, we are pushing for more firm and fast playing conditions and to do this we start by analyzing our irrigation strategies to save water. Some superintendents that I have talked to have said that firm and fast conditions could not be accomplished without having a few brown areas across the golf course. While some are also saying that “Brown is the New Green” and with the focus on saving water on golf courses, brown is evident. Here at Pinehurst No. 2, brown is definitely evident as the goal of the entire golf course is to produce the most firm and fast playing conditions possible that climate and weather conditions can allow. Many of you may have read the latest articles on Pinehurst No. 2 and how they cut about 650 irrigation heads across the course and are now only irrigating main turf areas such as main fairway areas, tees, and of course greens. However some of the things you haven’t heard about this is that hand watering and movable sprinkler heads are incorporated into each day’s management practices.
|Hand-watering the various wire-grass plants across the natural areas.|
|Hand-watering is an essential management practice for Creeping Bentgrass Greens.|
|Can you see the Ghostly Foot Prints?|
Watering turfgrass always comes down to what you feel in your gut. Technology has given us great tools in discovering how much moisture is currently in the system and how much water has been lost from evapotranspiration but we still make the final decision on how much we should apply to the turf. Thus, we must be educated and experienced to make logical decisions on applying just enough water to our golf courses to not only produce a quality healthy product, but also to save our natural resource of WATER.