15 April 2014

Spring Set Back

We woke up with a fresh coat of snow on the ground, another 2" that was enough to break a 130-year-old record for the snowiest winter in SE Michigan history. 

Also saw more damage from yesterday's powerful wind storms. The spruces behind #4 green, which were weak to begin with, were uprooted at some point in the day.

We are not entirely sure what this weather will mean for our turf. No doubt it is not good for it after a week in the 60's and 70's. Time will tell. 

14 April 2014

A Straight Line Blows Through the Hollow

Today we experienced straight line winds that caused quite a bit of damage to the property.  Shortly after work began in the morning, wind gusts picked up around 50-60MPH.  We pulled our crew off the golf course, and then watched as trees were snapped and covers blown off the greens.

Straight line winds typically accompany thunderstorms and are often confused with tornadoes due to the similarity of destruction.  However, unlike tornadoes, straight line wind damage is generally found in a "straight line," hence the name.  Debris is commonly found in parallel rows.

The trees that fell include two rotten spruce trees behind #15 green, and three spruces on the left side of #7 fairway.  The maple just left of #13 green was mortally injured when half the tree snapped off, and it will now need to be removed.

We will spend the next few days cleaning up the debris following the powerful winds today.

10 April 2014

First Impressions

This is the golf course about a month ago.  Bear that in mind.  The turf
is going to be very slow waking up this year.
Some of you may be taking to the course for the first time this weekend.  Just remember, the turf is just beginning to wake up from a long winter slumber.  Please be sure to replace all divots and fix all ball marks.  The back nine is currently closed, and greens #4, 5, 8, 9 are also closed on the front.  Please stay off the greens that are closed, they are in a healing process and any traffic now will further delay their opening.

09 April 2014

Snooze Button

We have seen the turf begin to respond positively as temperatures have begun warming up this week.  But it's not like flipping a switch.  Right now our turf appears to be hitting the snooze button.  Even the turf tucked in under the covers isn't doing much of anything.  And it won't, not until temperatures warm up consistently and soil temperatures get warmer.

Climatologists have told us that we should expect a cooler, wetter spring than normal, accompanied by fluctuating temperatures.  This week has been very warm, but next week looks to be diving back down again.  As long as the weather is up and down, we can't expect to see our turf doing much.  Areas with more shade will be weeks behind areas that receive full sun.

Today we are discovering how deep the frost remains in the ground as we begin making repairs to the irrigation system.  We can't even dig up heads right now because of the ground frost.  Carts will not be allowed out until the frost is out of the ground and the turf begins growing.  We also want to minimize traffic on areas that may have been injured over the winter.  It's too early to tell right now.

03 April 2014

Throwback Thursday at Plum

History surrounds us here at Plum Hollow. It is more than a feeling as you walk onto the same grounds that the greats of golf once walked in the 1940's and 1950's. We literally find pieces of history out here every day. 

While prepping some of the gardens yesterday I found a Worthington Wonderball buried in the dirt near the clubhouse. A little online research leads me to think this ball came from the 1950's. (They're going for the equivalent of a hot lunch on eBay.). 

How and why it was where it was will always be a mystery, but that kind of stuff will only lend to the aura that already surrounds us.