December 11--I thought that at the start of November the course was as green as it ever had been at that time, but by the end of November it was as brown as it had ever been. It has been a dry, erratic start to the winter and we have already started to water greens with our deep line irrigation system. It remains to be seen how the rest of the winter will go but some moisture from above would be welcome for sure.
First picture shows the cracking in the greens that is already occurring. The second picture illustrates just how brown it is already. Usually, this is what it looks like in February. Hopefully we will get some snowcover soon.
You can see the cover on the knob in the top right corner of the previous picture. The cold weather froze up the greens before we could get covers out, but the recent warm spell has allowed us to get some of the covers out on our most exposed hills.
November 17--- I guess winter made its arrival early! WOW!! it has been frigid. Luckily we were able to blow out the irrigation system in a mad scramble just before the cold snap. How this abrupt change in temps affect the turf remains to be seen. Grasses have an amazing ability to physiologically ready themselves for winter and freezing temperatures. Daylength and lower temperatures stimulate changes in the sugar content of the leaf making it more similar to the antifreeze found in your car's radiator. Temperatures as radical as we just encountered will certainly test a plant's winter survival mechanisms!
October was a beautiful month and we were able to continue progress on the greens' surrounds transition to bluegrass/ryegrass. There will be some small open voids of dead bentgrass come next spring but they should continue to fill quickly. Overall we are extremely pleased with the establishment of new turf species in the approaches.
Hope you all checked out the new aerial videos of the course. We think it looks fantastic and are looking forward to next years golf season.