09 JUN 2023
We managed to get through our first heatwave of the year in May. The surfaces didn't suffer too much, although we do see a few areas that dried out. The cooler weather will bring everything back into balance. A little rain won't be frowned upon. For our lawn, yes, but also for most of nature in general. It would also give a respite to all the forest fires raging in our Country. With climate change, which is becoming more and more evident, we're going to have this kind of episode more frequently.
On a completely different note, the greens aeration at La Bête is complete. We can see that they're healing well, and we can even see the young bentgrass shoots in the aeration holes and vertical mowing furrows.
The same formula will be used at Le Maître on Tuesday June 13 and Wednesday June 14 for the green’s aeration. Two mornings are used for the turf team to complete this operation. An important step in improving and solidifying our greens for the summer. Several other cultural operations will also be carried out throughout the golf season. This one is particular in that it allows us to remove thatch, give oxygen, loosen the soil, and add sand to our soil profile for a better balance of oxygen and water. I try to have a ratio of 50% soil to 25% air and 25% space for water.
Many of you have asked me the following questions: regarding the slit drainage system we installed last year at No 9,11 and 18, will the sand lines disappear quickly? Are you going to lay turf or seed in these drainage lines? The answer is that we're going to let them close on their own with the surrounding grass. Seeding these lines would require us to apply additional soil to germinate the seed. This soil would contaminate our drainage sand profile and prevent the optimal percolation we've installed. The same applies to sod. Thatch, already present in our sod rolls, would hinder water infiltration, and reduce the system's efficiency. The right temperature, good fertilization will help close everything up. We want our drainage system to be 100% functional for many years to come. In 10-15 years, we'll just have to uncover a thin line on these areas to make it fully functional again.
What about bentgrass
Bentgrass has the particularity of producing stolons in very large quantities. With its largely horizontal growth, it can form uniform, dense lawns able to sustain very short mowing heights. This species adapts very well to cold climates. Its exceptional lateral growth enables it to rapidly re-colonize areas damaged by play or biotic and abiotic stresses. It is the most tolerant of lawn grasses to very short and frequent mowing. As a perennial, it propagates by very vigorous stolons. On the other hand, the aggressive growth of these stolons forms a thick layer of thatch that needs to be continually reduced by topdressing, core and solid tine aeration and vertical mowing. We already use these practices regularly.
- Seeding of thin areas of fairways and tees with bentgrass;
- Aeration of greens at Le Maître;
- Topdressing the greens at La Bête;
- Cutting sand trap edges and cleaning drains.