Author: Geoff Smith

Geoff Smith is Abridge Course Manager.

Early frost, but drying, slowly

We have a slight frost which means all greens are on tempoarary for while. As soonas this thaws we will get the greens back on. We are drying out slowly and a dry week is forecast. There are still 3 temporary greens today. Buggys and Trolleys are allowed on the front 9 but must stick to the paths at all times please. You may take a Trolley round the back 9 but please take care.

We all need AIR !

So what is that rather large piece of machinerey on the fairways at the moment, getting in the way of your Golf , punching holes in the fairways and leaving mess !

Well, its called a verti-drain. Its a great bit of kit that helps us get our fairways in the condition they are during the season

Grass needs air just like we do to make it healthy and flourish. The clay soil we have makes it essential to keep the soil profile aerated allowing vital air into it , this creates a better environment for root development, which in turn makes the plant more resistant to dry periods and wear from golf traffic.

The idea of the verti drain is to create these air pockets and relieve compaction from the continuous golf traffic.

It also helps with draining a surface water, by creating spaces amongst the soil to allow water to get through. When conditions are right we can get holes down 14 inches, but any depth of 5 inches or more is doing a job. The thickness of the tines range from 1/2 inch to 1 inch.

It takes roughly a whole working day to do one approach and fairway. If you see it on the course you will see its a slow process.

Conditions have to be right to be able to use the verti-drain, if the ground is too hard you cannot get the tines into the ground, too wet and you create a mud bath. Yes it does make a bit of mess as it disrupts the surface, but the benefits outweigh heavily this.

Here at Abridge Golf Course we ideally Verti-drain all the fairways, approaches and tees three times a year when possible. We also do the same process on the greens but use a smaller machine and thinner tines. More on that process another time.

Please watch and enjoy the video below and see this great bit of machinery in action.


Wet and Windy Thursday

Another wet night has dropped 10mm of rain so unfortuntely again there will be some temporary greens in play. Buggys on the front 9 only and please stick to the paths and take care. Trolleys can be used on all 18 holes but please use the paths as much as possible when you can and take care on the back 9. Its a little windy today so please take care and enjoy your round

Wet update

Its still raining , but we have managed to get 9 greens back in play. It is essential now that Trolleys around the front 9 stick to paths only please. You may take a trolley on the back 9 holes but please be careful. Buggy’s are only allowed on the front 9 holes and must stay on the paths at all times .

Good weekend for decorating !

The forecast is for it to be cold over the weekend with temperatures not rising much above freezing until monday. Whilst the snow may thaw and the greens look clear they will still be very wet and potentially frozen just below the surface.

Using the greens under these conditions can do some real damage to the root system. I am sure you will appreciate, we want to protect our greens from this potential damage? Therefore, although we will do our best over the weekend and the beginning of next week to get as many greens in play as we can , you may find yourself playing to temporary greens. Please watch the video below for further education.



Abridge Irrigation Lake update

I thought you might like an update on the Irrigation lake.

The best way I could do this was to give you a Bird’s eye view using a Drone. Its only my second proper flight so please be patient with my flying skills! Don’t worry I have all the permissions from the relevant authorities to fly it so hopefully I will not be bringing any airports to a standstill!!

 The Greenstaff have been working incredibly hard and we are really making some progress. Watch the video and you will see it shows the middle of the area and then zooms around the perimeters.

The film starts looking at the perimeter of the proposed lake along the side of the 4th fairway where these trees you see will remain. It then shows the row of trees along the 1st fairway will remain and this will extend round to the 2nd tee. You then see the new water tank and pump house, we have to remove the trees initially. Once digging commences and soil is moved the Water Tank and Pump house will be hidden by Soil mounding and new trees planted.

The video then shows the 3rd hole where we have now removed more trees, this area again will be shaped and mounded with excess soil forming the bank of the Lake.

The aerial view gives you an idea of the size of the Lake, it will store approximately 35,000 cubic litres of natural water, and at its deepest is roughly 6 m deep. The Lake, when full, will give us enough of our own water to use for irrigation to the course throughout most summers.

Finally I have tried to show you further views of the area.

We still have more clearance work to do and then the next stage of construction can start.

Enjoy the Video

I will update you further on this in the next few weeks

Regards Geoff

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