Last week there was two feet of snow covering the course which was followed by two inches of rain. Everyone saw the amount of flooding and problems this caused. The golf course was no exception. The entire golf course had more flooding than ever before. A few days of sunshine and no precipitation has made a huge difference.
Winter is a very difficult time to figure out what is going on with turfgrass. Ideally snow cover makes a big difference and acts as an insulation barrier. Two feet of snow can stick around for a long time and cause some headaches. I went out everyday this past week to remove as much snow as possible from the greens. This was done to eliminate the threat of snow mold.
Snow mold is a fungus that grows underneath the snow on bentgrass. Once temperatures start to rise the snow begins to melt and creates a warm climate underneath the snow. This becomes a perfect environment for this fungus to thrive. By removing as much snow as possible definitely lessened the presence of this disease on our greens and collars.
You treat your greens with a fungicide treatment as late in the year as possible. This is normally done in November. The treatment has a limited life expectancy which generally decreases after 100 days. With all the snow accumulations I was very nervous about the threat of snow mold. Fortunately by removing the snow it left only a few areas of damage. Below is a picture of snow mold on #1 collar.
The driving range opened on Friday and there were a fair amount of patrons hitting balls. Saturday was also a beautiful day with more folks practicing on the range. The simulator also had some good use.
This week the snow is almost completely gone from the course. I toured the course on Friday afternoon and everything is looking very nice. The frost level is down about 12″ on most of the greens. I’m hoping the weather is nice the next few days and I can open the golf course on Wednesday. Only a few days later than the March 20 date I predicted.