Golf Shop News by Mark Heptig

The next four weeks will be key for the golf course as we transition from summer heat to cooler temperatures that generally occur by mid-September. For Head Golf Course Superintendent Blake Swint and myself this is always the most difficult time of the year. The turf can only tolerant so much heat. The stress of high temperatures, high volume of play and plenty of cart traffic does have a cumulative effect. Although we have some turf loss it is less than in previous years and some of it is planned. For example, in many areas we have turned down the water just off the tees for the first 50-60 yards to conserve water. Our June water bill was over $55,000. Imagine how large the water bill could have been if we had not mulched/non-irrigated some 15 acres of turf area! In other areas we see increased turf like in the 13th and 17th fairways and roughs or on the 7th and 8th fairways of the Dollar Ranch.
As usual, Blake has done an excellent job of keeping the greens in wonderful, consistent condition. It is no easy task. Most of these greens date back to the late 1960’s and mid-1970’s. These traditional “pop up greens” take special care. To keep them in great shape and disease free is difficult. One thing that helps is we don’t push them to be to speedy. We consider their health to be much more important than trying to get another “foot on the stemp meter”.
Several projects have been accomplished so far this year. Several bunkers have been rebuilt on the Dollar Ranch Course and new tee signs were just put in place on the Creekside Course. Two small areas were converted to mulch that were out of play (behind the 8th green Dollar and by the tennis courts). We also finished the mulch projects along the street at the 2nd hole and by the 6th green Dollar. A big project to move water away from the Gateway parking lot that overflows by the 3rd green at Creekside may have saved over $100,000 if left to engineers rather than an in-house project. There is always plenty going on as we seek to improve the golf facility. We will be spending some $40,000 to repair cart paths this fall and another $40,000 to rebuild the 9th green starting October 1st.
Please take the time to fix your ball marks and replace your divots. Raking the sand bunkers is important and when replacing the rake in the bunker please place it in the bunker parallel to play. Enjoy your golf and know that the staff here at Rossmoor is dedicated to making sure you do!