There is some disease scaring caused by fusarium on the greens but this has been spot treated and generally the greens are holding up relatively well. An application of dew dispersant has also been applied to keep greens as dry as possible.
The dry weather has also allowed us to put a cut on fairways, tees, tee banks and semi rough and we are now in the process of Flymo work around all bunkers.
Mowing and general tidying up of the course will continue whilst conditions are on our side, "Fingers Crossed"
Work began in December on solving the drainage issues on the putting green.
The make up of the putting green is basically 3-4 inches of rootzone that has built up over the years through top dressing but unfortunately this sits on top of a very deep layer of clay.
3 lateral drains have been installed through the low spots to a depth of around 2ft and then piped,stoned and backfilled with rootzone.
These drains then run into a sump at a depth of 7ft, unfortunately at this depth it was still solid clay so an additional sump was installed with a lateral drain linking the two to be used as an overflow.
The sumps were then back filled with large stone and top soil was applied, ready for seed.
Clearance of overgrowth to the ditch to the left hand side of the 3rd, has now been completed along with silt clearance and a slight re shaping of ditch up to the bridge on the 5th. The remainder of the ditch will be completed in the near future.
3 poor bunkers have now been filled in and re shaped.
The 16th bunker was filled in and re shaped creating some slight mounding. This has been seeded but germination this time of year is very slow.
The 8th bunker was filled and gorse plants transported from the course were added to the back part of this area.seeding and top soil has now been completed to this area along with the filled in bunker on the 18th.
All 3 of these bunkers presented different problems 16th was an issue due to regular vandalism. the 8th and 18th presented drainage issues for the adjacent green.
Unfortunately, 3 ash trees on the 17th have been suffering from disease (not ash dieback) and have presented a possible health and safety issue, therefore the decision was made to remove and replace with new, 4 pine trees have now been planted in a similar area as a replacement.
Work on widening the base of the ditch on the 17th is due to begin week commencing the 28th of January.
Over the past 6 weeks a lot of work has gone into improving the make up of our greens and, in particular, the surfaces.
Overseeding, using Creeping Bent, took place the week of 8th October, followed by an application of organic fertilizer on the 16th of October. We have also sprayed "turf hardeners" that include iron, seaweed and magnesium, along with a penetrant to allow both water to pass through the soil and oxygen to access the roots more easily.
A further application of organic fertilizer will be applied no later than 19th November.
Greens have been hand mown only since the overseeding process began and this will continue throughout the winter, with the aim of giving us a smoother playing surface.
Disease pressure is high on the greens at present, mainly because of the mild and damp conditions of the past couple of weeks, fusarium being the main concern. This has been treated.
Some old scarring, caused by Anthracnose in September and treated at the time, is still visible. Unfortunately, these weaker areas were also affected by nematode, which has meant recovery has taken slightly longer, mainly on the 7th green.
All in all surfaces are improving week by week, which is essential to see us through the winter and into the spring
Symptoms begin as a darkened, water-soaked appearance to the grass. The patches enlarge and may develop orange-brown rings around the outside of the patch.
Fusarium is most often found on our greens but can also affect our tees and fairways. However, as these areas are less dependant on a smooth surface it is less of a problem. Fusarium is the most common and widespread disease affecting golf courses in the UK.
Generally, courses with a grass sward, dominant in Poa annua (which Filton has), are most susceptible.
Fusarium can occur at any time of the year. However, it is most common and damaging during the autumn and winter, when the weather is mild and moist.
Anthracnose is most common on Poa annua grass in the UK. Anthracnose can cause two types of disease, depending on the weather conditions during infection.
Foliar blight - The grass turns a tan-yellow colour in irregular patches. This type is most common during hot, dry periods of the summer.
Basal Rot - This begins as yellowing of older leaves on individual plants. The youngest leaf may become brick red in the later stages of development. The plant easily pulls from the turf and a black rot is visible at the base of the stem. This type is mostly found during cool, wet weather from late autumn through winter and into early spring.
Anthracnose is generally found on any area of turf suffering from stress, especially golf greens, tees and fairways. Anthracnose is widespread over the whole of the UK and is the second most common disease on UK golf courses .
We have a large presence of Poa annua grass all over the golf course, especially in our greens. Poa is particularly susceptible to Anthracnose. Grass that is under stress is also susceptible. Some of these stress situations that have occured this year, and which have particularly contributed, are as follows: -
Nematodes are microscopic, invertebrate animals that are especially common in soils. They range in size from 100 µm to 300µm in length. Plant parasitic nematodes have a protractible hollow or grooved spear (stylet) in their head, which they use to puncture plant cells and withdraw the contents.
Greens provide an ideal environment for nematodes. Greens provide the nematodes with a uniform host with a long growing season. The soil has a high percentage of sand which provides ideal pore spaces for oxygen, water and nematode mobility, and the greens are watered frequently. Nematodes are aquatic animals and need moisture for mobility. Golf greens can have some of the highest populations of nematodes found in agricultural soils.
Next Season the greens staff will be top dressing our greens more regularly to promote a smoother and more resilient playing surface. Below is a short very informative video on the benefits of top dressing and why we do it.
After resting the greens for a week during the seed germination process, the green staff have been handcutting the greens to avoid any undue stress on the new seed.
After putting them back in play on Saturday 26th October, the roll on the greens was noticably smoother.
This will get better with time as the new seed gets stronger. We aim to repeat the process annually over the next few years to promote the best possible playing surface for the members.
As we hopefully edge ever closer to some better weather you will start to see increased activity on the greens by our greenstaff, including mowing, tining, hollow tining, sand dressing,verti cutting and rolling to name a few !
Every week/fortnight we will be posting a question on different activities with some answers as to why and how each task is done, to hopefully give you more understanding to what goes on with your greens!
We will start this off with Pin Placements!
HOW DO YOU SELECT PIN PLACEMENTS
A number of things are taken into consideration when selecting pin positions
1- To be around 10ft away from previous hole
2- Try to keep away from previous holes that have not fully recovered
3- damage to green including disease scarring
4- To be around 7ft from perimeter of green (flag length)
5- County/Club Champs pins are selected around 2 weeks prior to comp. These areas are then avoided for the period leading up to event to allow for the best possible surface to putt on around selected pin.
6- when possible 6 easy 6 medium 6 hard positions will try to be selected mixing up front/middle and back pins
7- weather conditions
There are dryer area's to every green (believe it or not). These area's are selected during prolonged periods of rain
Next Week's Question will be about hollow tining and solid tining greens!
A top quality course, peaceful surroundings, attentive and welcoming staff are just some of the compelling reasons to join us here at Filton.
Filton boasts a superb rolling parkland course which is in top condition all year round.
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The team at Filton Golf Club prides itself on offering the perfect golf package to suit your requirements.