Weekly update & traffic cop

Was nice to have a bit of Summer back for a couple of days. The heat will help the turf recover from some of the damage we suffered this season (more on that in a minute). The Greens have fully recovered from aerifying last week and look great. The comments have been positive so I assume they are playing well also. Sadly I have not played here in a bit. I did however play off-island last weekend and will again this weekend so all is not lost. It is always good to see other courses. This year adds a twist to chat up a colleague and hear about all the trouble he had and how bad he thinks his course is only to play and hardly see any damage. We are our own worst critics. The view from the golfers perspective is totally different than if you are driving around looking for every little imperfection. This is a hard lesson to learn and confounded by memberships that demand total perfection. Thank-you for not being one of those.

seed popping in the slice seed rows on fairways
It felt like the seed in fairways was never going to germinate but we have some growth now starting. Seedlings are very weak and susceptible to wear so traffic is a major concern. I was tempted to institute a 90 degree rule on fairways for a few weeks to give them a fighting chance. The problem is that traffic control on a golf course borders on lunacy. It does not matter what you do someone will invariably do the opposite of what they should and what you want. Sometimes on purpose, often out of habit or simply because they are so focused on chasing the white ball they are not paying attention. An example: I had a few signs redone in the last month to make them useful again. I sprinkled them out on a few holes to see how they would work. I watched a member playing in my own foursome pull his cart right by two of the three. They clearly say NO PULL CARTS. I thought it was self explanatory but apparently not.
rt of 3 green pull cart tracks in dew. sign not working

"The problem is that traffic control on a golf course borders on lunacy"

 I often tell people one of the parts of my job that continues from it's earliest times is the herding aspect. Originally a greenkeeper would herd sheep around the property to mow the grass. Now we attempt to herd golfers to keep them from wearing the turf. If every pull cart walks on the same path, say the right collar on 3 green, then the turf gets compacted and suffers. So we attempt to cajole players to spread the wear by using ropes, stakes, signs, personal pleas, scare tactics, you name it we have tried it. Many many years ago I told a player if I caught him pulling his cart over the ropes on three once more it would take a team of surgeons to remove it from... well you know. Not my finest moment but the alternative to keep my sanity is I barely notice anymore. Giving up is not part of a greenkeeper's genetic makeup however so here we are trying new signs and talking about traffic once again. Rusty Hitchings often likes to remind me of our first meeting when he played an early nine with a pull cart and I caught up to him on 6 or so and jokingly told him if he is going to be first off he better behave because I can see every place he has been in the dew. I use that example to train the staff also. If they make tracks where we do not want carts golfers will follow them. Herd mentality. 
So to deal with our seedling issue we have roped off the worst areas to keep carts out entirely. If you care to help in the recovery on fairways stay out of these areas and avoid any other bare spots. The reduction in traffic is critical for the first month.
Skunks have started feeding again

exploratory for a water line expansion this Fall on Golf Club Rd

Steve Handy doing some road drain work for us.
Edit: I added the following video link. A classic from the archives of Turfnet TV and Randy Wilson
Humorous cart control video

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