Irrigation & Spring Maintenance
This week we finally got some dry spring like weather conditions and with most wet areas starting to dry up and with dry weather forecast for the coming week we should see the end of the buggy ban.
Pumping water from these wet areas has prevented large areas being submerged, preventing turf dying off. Lets hope that is the last time we have to use them this season and next!. I think the team are looking forward to the summer!
This week also saw the start of phase 1 of the irrigation update. The MJ Abbott team arrived on the island on Monday but had a late start with their kit being held up at the docks. But the team did not wasted any time once it did arrive and quickly got back on schedule completing greens 1, 2, 13, 9, 11, & 5. I have to say how impressed I am with how tidy they have left the turf in these areas.
The only visible sign from the irrigation is the cut line were the mole pulls the irrigation pipe and control cable through the ground at a depth of 450 mm.
In the position of the new irrigations head a loop of cable is left. This cable sends a signal to the decoder which in turn sends current to the solenoid on the irrigation head opening the valve inside the sprinkler head which then allows irrigation to take place. The irrigation head is connected to a swing arm, this swing arm allows the head to move up and down once in place. So if a big tractor rolls over the head it will simply move down without breaking any pipe work under the ground and then move back to its original position.
The pipe being fitted is MDPE which has a much longer life span than the old PVC pipe it is replacing. The pipe comes in long rolls and therefore cuts down on joins, minimizing the risk of leaks.Also no glue joints are use on the pipe work, the only joints are compression joins which have a much longer life span than glue.
To finish off the install and remove any heave left over from the mole plow a large roller is used. Within a month or so there will be no sign of the work having been carried out.
This week we had the arrival of our new fairway aeration machine which is designed to cope with heavy compaction. We are taking full advantage of the holes being closed for the irrigation works by aerating each fairway behind the contractors, something which has not received much attention in the past. This work will help to break down the thatch layer within the
fairways to help create a much stronger turf sward for the future. Our older, smaller machine has been carrying out deep aeration on the green’s surfaces which has created some disturbance to the surface. In order to rectify this problem we will be top dressing this week. This machine has now moved onto the tees surfaces and work here is also nearly complete. This will help the tees surfaces dry out as well as preparing them for the start of the season. As part of this preparation we have also applied a spring, slow release fertiliser to the tees.