The closure of the golf course for two days allowed the greenstaff to carry out intensive overseeding work on the greens. This was the main task planned however with all the course free we also vertidrained all the tees and surrounds as well as double verticut all surrounds and cut all tees and surrounds.
The volunteers or “Random Task Force” were out in force divotting with intent, painting bins, touching up course furniture and pulling out Ragwort around the course so a huge thanks to them for taking some of the less glamorous jobs away from us.
For the seeding we first created small ‘pots’ to seed into with a few different pieces of equipment. It is essential that we get the seed into the ground so it has soil contact otherwise there will be no germination.
The seed was mixed by ourselves and is a blend of 5 different Browntop Bents and 4 different Fescues. Following the mixing we broadcast the seed manually using the fertiliser barrow directly on top of the holes.
Each green received around 8Kg of Bent seed and 6Kg of Fescue. Up to this year we have been sowing primarily Fescue however it has proven hard to establish with our level of winter play and the late seeding times. We included some again this season more as a trial to see if sowing earlier in the year will allow better establishment and increase our chances of maintaining some Fescue content in the greens.
Bent has proven itself to be the number one dominant species in our greens. Any disease scars or wear areas have quickly filled with Bent with little to no help from us so it is the logical choice for our surfaces.
The seed mix was then dragged with the metal mat to pull anything on the surface into the holes.
After the greens were rolled to firm the surface we applied a light dressing of sand to cover the seed but not fill the holes totally.
This is to ensure that the germinating seedlings develop slightly below the existing turf and essentially give themselves a higher height of cut. This will maximise their chances of establishing by reducing stress from regular mowing.
We should start to see germination by the middle of August with Fescue first and Bent a few days later.
We have been fortunate that the GDD has fallen in such a way that the growth regulator was due a few days after seeding. This has been applied and means that the existing turf will have its growth held back just as the seed is germinating therefore reducing competition.