Category: Green Keepers News

News and information from our Abridge Green keepers on whats happening around the course and how they are keeping it in the best condition.

Coming Together Nicely

Good Morning all it’s a beautiful day at Abridge Golf Club. Have a click on the video below to see how we are ‘turning up’ the Course .

I hope you enjoyed that. We are working hard to move things up and up in quality and presentation.

Drone footage 9th May 2019

The weather is set fair for this week with temperatures rising and so this morning the greens are getting some air, verti-cutting followed by a cut, feed and topdress. This is similar to what we did to them a couple of weeks ago and hopefully we will not interfere too much with your enjoyment the next couple of days.

Everything is starting to grow nicely now and, like every year, the Rough has really thickened . We are cutting it hopefully twice this week ! but please be patient. All areas will get cut this week but have a few staff issues. I have two off sick and one on holiday so its going to be a bit of a struggle but we will do our best.

We will hopefully this week be getting the divot bins out again for you to help us with divoting the fairways as you play. It really makes a difference if you can take bag and fill a few divots in as you go.

The new tanks for the Irrigation should all be connected by the end of May and the Newt catching is progressing and on schedule.

The 4th green is doing great and we intend to open this as planned by the end of May.

The 13th bunkers are all now in play I hope you enjoy playing out of them !!

Finally my staff and I wish the Captain well with his away day this week.

ENJOY YOUR COURSE ENJOY YOUR CLUB………IT’S YOUR REMEMBER !

IT’S AIR TIME

Good morning all hope you are enjoying the Golf course. Easter was amazing weekend for weather but temperatures have dropped back and rather stunted things growing.

As I put on Teamup last week we will be doing some work on the greens this week. Firstly they will get some vital aeration, click on the link below .

Aeration on Abridge greens

Hope you enjoyed that. After this we will verti-cut the greens which will help cut some of the longer grasses that are laying down.

A cut , an iron and a nice feed to the greens finally followed by a top dressing and our greens work will be done.

Hopefully all by Tuesday, weather permitting. Please be patient with us while we do this essential work. We cannot cut the greens for a couple of days after so they may be a little slow until the weekend.

On the subject of Air, Marc ( our House Manager ) and myself were asked to feature on a radio show all about Abridge Village and surrounding areas, namely the Golf Club. It’s a really interesting programme to listen to . It’s a 3 hour listen and we are approximately on about 2 hours 10 minutes into the programme. If you want to listen click on the link below, hope you enjoy it.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p074lzbn

Hopefully you will have noticed a lot of seed ‘popping’ on the areas we have overseeded, especially the fairways 11,12,13, and 14.

You may have noticed that we top dressed the Tees last week and there was a slight ‘smell’ to the soil we used to do this? This is because we mixed our normal sand/soil dressing mix with something called Humus.

Humus

Humus is the organic material in soil. Humus is not a form of soil, rather it is the broken down composted remains of leaves, grass, and other organic matter contained within the soil. Humus is highly nutritious and rich in minerals and microbes vital for healthy plant growth. Humus also is able to hold 80-90 per cent of its own weight in moisture.

It’s a brilliant thing to use but does have a bit of an odour. It helps to stimulate growth. In fact these two below have been washing there hair in it , let’s hope it works on humans too!

green keepers at abridge
Don’t think Humus will work on these two, somethings are beyond help !!
Though Paul’s beard seems to be coming on well !

Thank you to all of you for keeping out of the Irrigation lake area while we continue to trap and move the wildlife. We have approximately 25-30 more days of doing this.

Now that we have dried out to allow Buggy’s and Trolley’s on we will no longer be updating the course condition link every day. We will now do this on a weekly basis, ideally on a Friday, letting you know what is going on the Golf Course the coming week.

Finally a 4th green update. It’s coming back nicely but we need to give it a few more weeks to let the new seed establish. PLEASE KEEP OFF it to let nature do what nature does best ….repair and recovery !

That’s it for this update . Regards Geoff

ENJOY YOUR COURSE, ENJOY YOUR CLUB……. IT’S YOUR’S REMEMBER !

BEWARE ! COMING TO A COURSE NEAR YOU ! Masters syndrome !

Morning all, I thought I would share this article I read last week, It’s a bit of a chuckle but very informative and I have put my slant on it in places.

This is a very dangerous illness that some golfers suffer from sadly every April.

The symptoms are suffering from delusions and unrealistic expectations that their own golf course should look like Augusta National

It’s a fair point really I suppose ? (not !) So anyone who is suffering from this condition I thought I would aide your recovery by giving you some facts about Augusta and why no course can ever be in as good as condition this time of year especially in the UK.

  1. Budget:- Between the TV money and the wealthy members, the greenkeeping budget at Augusta National is astronomical. Only the crème-de-la-crème are welcomed into the ranks of membership at Augusta, and they pay a premium for the privilege.
  2. Climate:- The subtropical climate in Georgia is in stark contrast to the UK, which has temperatures far lower over the past few months. Grasses that are starting to grow slowly in April in the uk are growing from early January in Augusta. They also benefit from million dollar sub air systems under the Greens which heat the grass to make them grow.
  3. Course :-Imagine closing your course between May and October, as they do at Augusta National. The grass species used on the course struggles to survive the hot Georgia summer, so closing the course means it isn’t put under undue stress, and golfers aren’t damaging the hard, dry turf.

4.Green speeds :-The green speeds at Augusta exceed 13 on the stimpmeter. The cost of getting a green to that standard is incredible, let alone the stress on the grass. That aside Club golfers playing on excessive speeds would lead to huge numbers of 3 and 4 putts. Note, we get very close to these speeds for the Club Championships.

5. Artificial aids to appearance:- We’ve all heard the myths about filters over the camera lenses to make the grass appear greener, trees being shipped in , fans hidden in trees and the azaleas being kept on ice to ensure they flower at the correct time. Some of these have been denied, but the fact is the management team at Augusta National only show you what they want you to see, and that’s the impression of golfing perfection.

6. Greenstaff and Volunteer Greenstaff :- They have more greenstaff than you can imagine, plus they then ship in 100’s of volunteer greenstaff from other courses although it is an incredible experience for those greenkeepers who are given the opportunity to get involved with one of the greatest spectacles in golf.

WOWSER !
Augusta Greenstaff working on 1 hole, they have similar numbers on each hole

7. Machinery: Machine companies are happy to supply 100’s of extra machines as a gesture or tournament support as it gives them a great TV advert.

15 Fairway mowers on this hole, Abridge have 2 fairway mowers , and thats a luxury !

So there you have it , a few tonics to help with the condition!

I thought the above was very interesting I hope you did . Us Course Managers sound bitter and twisted, we are really not . Personally I enjoy watching the Masters as much as anybody, but I just have to remind myself firstly its an incredible unique experience and secondly the resources and machinery my excellent Greenstaff have available to them in comparison do a bloody great job!

Hopefully you agree from the pictures below taken the last couple of days

4th Fairway yesterday
3rd Green, oh , and Ben’s b……e!
Looking back down the 5th hole

I hope you enjoy playing The Abridge Masters over the weekend. Good luck

Enjoy your Course, Enjoy your Club……It’s your’s remember!

What a lovely day

Forecast is for a pleasant early spring day, enjoy ! Please remember as per my update on friday that we are verti-draining greens today and it will be a little disruptive. The 14th hole will be shut until approx 11.00am and then the 10th will be closed for irrigation works. The 4th is on a temporary green whilst repairs are being carried out to the green. Buggys are only allowed on the front 9 holes and must stick to the paths. Trolleys are on

We are going a little Crazy!

Well despite the awful weather the last few weeks, the Greenstaff have been very busy. Working with MJ Abbots we have installed Perrot Irrigation into the 11th fairway, a few extra sprinklers in places. The new water main pipe and electric has been installed across the Driving Range, the 1st Hole and the 2nd Hole and we have also created a ditch to catch run off water from the 1st hole and the Driving Range!

Ben and Jamie having fun with the new ditch


Apologies for the mess but these are essential jobs. Take a look at the video below to show a little bit of what we have been doing.

Busy Busy Busy

Sorry there was no music on that video , I had put ‘Let’s go Crazy !’ by Prince on it , but I had a few copyright issues !!! So watch it again and either sing the song or play it on your phone alongside the video!!

We have also started work today on the 4th Green to repairt he issues we have with it.

These last few days there has been no rain and the grasses are beginning to wake up for spring. Slowly and carefully we are starting to get a few things cut and shaped . Please be patient with us on this one as you as golfers and us all have been so careful not to leave too much mess anywhere so we don’t want to get out there with big machines too soon ! Though by next week if it stays dry I will be letting the boys with their toys loose!

All the Tee markers and Tee stones have been painted for a fresh feel. And we have started overseeding the Tees and Topdressing them and this work will continue over the next couple of weeks. The approaches have also had a feed this week.

So, what busy times lie ahead next week? On Monday and Tuesday next week we will complete our 2nd Spring Green’s Renovations . This will include a further deep Verti-drain going down 11-12 inches followed by some overseeding and a nice bit of feed for the plant. If conditions stay good we may apply some topdressing. This feed will cause the greens to go a little black in places owing to the Iron content in the feed, but that will soon disappear. Have a click on the video below to see the great verti-drain on the greens at work

Also we should be turfing the 13th Bunker complex on Thursday and I will release a report on that hopefully next week.

The work on the 4th Green will continue and this will be on a temporary Green all of next week as we need to give it time to recover.

Finally the Irrigation work continues with sprinkler installation on the 14th Fairway and the starting of the Pumps by the new water tank . Please be aware that the 14th hole will be closed from Today until we anticipated Monday/Tuesday

Phew!! I think that’s all next week!!

Enjoy your Golf. Enjoy your course. Enjoy your Club, remember it’s yours!

There coming back

This morning Mj Abbotts return for a few weeks to install further Irrigation and a few other things to our great course. Have a look below.

Their Back at Abridge Golf Club

Between us we will start installing further improvements to our new Perrot Irrigation system.

PERROT IRRIGATION PRODUCTS

The work includes sprinkler installation to the 11th fairway and also parts of the 14th fairway. We will also be adding sprinklers to the 2nd tees, surrounds on holes 7,12,13,14 and further sprinklers to the 10th approach. Please be aware that holes 1,10,11 and 14 will be closed when work is being done but no more than one hole will be closed at a time. The par 3 normally the practice green to the left of the 8th green, will be used as the substitute hole when these holes are shut

Other works to be done will include the new water mains installed from the road across the bottom of the driving range , across the 1st approach , in front of the 2nd tee and then connected to the new Pump House. The new 3 phase electric cable will also be taken across the same route and also join into the new Pump house. The Irrigation holding tank will also be finished, computer software and irrigation programme control system updated and then everything connected up. The new state of the art Perrot Irrigation equipment /Mj Abbot install will be all ready to rock n roll!

No other Golf Course in Essex will have such an efficient modern Irrigation system. We were in great condition last year, and we should be even better this year.

I ask again for all golfers to be patient and understanding while these works take place. I will each day let the pro shop know and update the website and ‘team up’ calendar as to where works are being done.

On a different subject i’m sure you will have noticed we have a problem with the 4th green. Between our agronomists, my own staff and myself we believe we have established a very good theory as what’s wrong with it and are now taking the necessary steps to get it sorted. I will give you the full story on it once we are 100% sure of what has happened.

We had a visit from this man on Tuesday afternoon.

What a very very pleasant man, happy to talk and for me despite being a 125% Gooner was really impressed to hear of his passion for West Ham and his desire to take to take them higher in the league. He asked me for a selfie, which I was happy to give him.

Enjoy your golf . Enjoy your Course . Enjoy your club, remember its yours!

Geoff

Busy Tines ahead !

Well, I hope you are enjoying this spell of early spring sunshine and warmer daytime temperatures? I personally don’t think we are out of Winter yet as some people keep saying but fingers crossed !

As the title says, (no its not a spelling mistake !), owing to the good conditions we are having we are pushing ahead with lots of aeration work . On Monday we will be deep verti-draining all of the greens, originally planned for March. A good iron behind this work and apart from the visual holes the greens will be fine, especially for February. I will need your patience on Monday and possibly Tuesday while we breathe some vital air into the greens. Anyone that missed my drone video on why we verti-drain its below for you.

The greens will then receive a fertiliser which is designed to correct any lack of nutrients from the winter , harden the plant to protect from disease and also start to kick the grass into growing slowly.

Hopefully the 18th green should be back in play by the weekend. Its been very wet and we have just booked to have drained later this year.

If you have played this week you will have noticed that the large verti-drain is out on the fairways again? It’s making a little superficial mess but the benefits and the great results this will bring to our ‘carpets’ in the spring will outweigh this mess.

The bad boy is out at it again ! Oh and so is the Verti-drain!

We have also already started Solid Tining Tees, Approaches and Surrounds using our great Toro Procore.

Great bit of kit !

The areas look a bit like tea bags after but this aeration is so good for the ground and creates some excellent airspace and vital oxygen to the grass plant. The diagram below hopefully explains why we aerate .

The benefits of aeration

Following this process Tees and Approaches will also receive a nice ‘wake up’ meal as well.

Next week further work will take place on the 13th bunkers rebuild. Hopefully the weather will be kind to let us get these works completed . Incorporated into the new bunker complex will be a ‘run off’ to the right of the 13th Green similar to the 10th and 18th Greens

Finally I would like to clarify a couple of things. Buggys are only allowed on the front 9 holes and must stick to the paths at all times. Trolleys can be used on all 18 holes, but unless you have purchsed Winter wheels (available from the Pro shop), you must keep your trolley on the paths .
We really appreciate your support on this matter, its your course, so lets look after it !

So lots going on on your Golf Course ! That’s it for now , enjoy your Golf , enjoy your Club.

Geoff

Abridge Golf Course Manager

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