By Rugby GC Course Manager and #Sodfather – Jonny Peacock
Well it’s certainly been one of the mildest winters I can remember up until the last week or so, with the weather being kind to greenkeepers up and down the country with very few closures due to bad weather.
The mild winter that we’ve been having has meant that although conducive to spells of weather perfect for outbreaks of disease on greens mainly fusarium. It has also meant that with the grass still growing at most courses greenkeepers have seen signs of recovery which you wouldn’t normally get during the winter months.
Other positives due to the good weather has meant that members and visitors of courses up and down the country have been taking advantage of this by being able to play plenty of golf with minimal restrictions.
The downside to this however from a greenkeepers point of view is that this has meant an increase in foot traffic all over the course but especially the greens in an ideal world we would love to give the greens a rest during the winter months but we also understand that golfers want to play on the greens whenever possible.
However the recent frosts will have come as a welcome change for many greenkeepers as this means that grass growth will slow down so less time will be spent cutting. A lot of greenkeepers will have winter work planned and this can now become a main focus. Frosts and cold weather usually mean that the potential for outbreaks of disease on the greens are lower as well and in many cases it means that the use of temporary greens will come into effect which in turn will mean that the main greens will get a welcome rest for a day or two at least.
Not all courses use temporary greens and I’m sure if you asked ten greenkeepers whether they believe temporary greens are necessary or not you would get a number of different opinions but that’s a debate for another day.
For the courses that don’t use temporary greens I’m sure the greenkeepers there wouldn’t say no to a week of snow!
Both course images – Rugby GC – January 2019
Add to the debate – If you’re a local greenkeeper please send us your own thoughts to add to Jonny’s – the golfers out there need educating!