Thursday, September 8, 2011

Bunker Work

String trimming of fairway bunker faces

The day after Labor Day our staff started the process of mowing the tall fescue from the bunkers.  Mowing of the tall fescue is a process that is typical fall maintenance practice.  For the next two months of the season all 99 bunkers will be cut on a regular basis.  Since some of the varieties of fescue growing on the faces have clump type growing habits, there are some voids that are visible on some of the fairway bunkers.

In an attempt to have the grass fill in theses voids we will be making regular fertility applications to the bunkers.  Applications of soluble fertilizer will aid with thickening the density of the faces and reduce the voids.  Over time we will create a thicker denser face.  This will not allow the ball to roll back into the bunker but it will provide a better lie and reduce the chance of having the ball settle into those voids.  Transitioning the bunkers for a whispy un-mantained look to a manicured look takes time and will not happen after one cutting or one fertility applications.  These transitions take time and patience will be needed.

Soluble applications of fertilizer

Regular mowing of bunker capes

A few bunkers have way too many voids and the application of fertilizer will not be enough to fill the voids.  On those bunkers we will strip and sod the faces.  We have identified about 5 fairway bunkers where we need to re-sod.  We are hoping to begin this process very soon.  The stripping of the existing turf will be the most difficult process, but the end result will provide a more consistent playing condition as well as visually more pleasing.
5 fairway bunker will be re-sodded

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