The last of the 3 scheduled aerations on our greens will take place Monday, August 5th. As with the previous aerations this year we will again utilize smaller hollow coring tines to remove more material and allow for a quicker healing process. This process will continue to create a more uniform soil profile and eliminate any layering issues caused during last summer’s renovation to the greens. In addition, the final granular soil fertilizers and amendments will be applied enhancing both the healing process and providing needed nutrients going into fall and dormancy. This has proven to be very beneficial and will continue to make the greens healthier.
Following the greens aeration, we plan on doing work to the collars as well. We will be doing a vertical mowing, core aeration and sand top dress and drag. This process will be a longer process due to being done around play but should have minimum impact on your round. The vertical mowing will be noticeable so if you see or play on them mid process or shortly after work is completed the collars may be off color and rougher than usually. The aeration and top dress program are done for many reasons including better water utilization, gas exchange, nutrient uptake and to create a tighter turf. This will also help us to have a better quality of cut on these key play areas through the reduction in thatch buildup from the summer growth period.
You may have noticed, if you’ve played Scotsdale in the last week, that slits have been made in the fairways. This process along with applications of a plant growth regulator and fertilizer, is done to help tighten up the common Bermuda. The slicing process causes the plant to produce new leaves and additional runners from the stolons enhancing filling of bare areas and producing an overall tighter turf and improved surface from which to play. My hope is that the denser I can get the common now, that the better success we will have going through winter and coming out in the spring. This is an application we plan on doing twice more in August.
This type work is very noticeable, labor intensive, time consuming and sometimes can impact play but will result in better conditions over time. As I once was told by someone wiser than I “Sometimes you have to break a few eggs to bake a cake.”
My staff and I hope everyone have been enjoying the beautiful weather and the golf course! Thank you for your support!
Scotsdale Golf Course Superintendent