Course “Clippings”
December, 2020 

Winter will be here in a couple of weeks so most of us are thinking about the Christmas holidays. Please do not forget about the golf course because we will have some excellent weather to play to work off the holiday dinners. This year has been eventful for the course with Covid, heat and very little rain fall during the growing season. During this year, the golf maintenance department undertook several construction projects.  We began by root pruning of the trees and installing a root barrier next to several of our greens. This was preformed to reduce the competition of the trees and grass. We repaired weak areas on the greens. During the heat of July through September we hand watered the dry locations on the green daily. We also kept up the water on the fairways. The tees on 3 and 9 was given a much needed leveling and new grass.  We are also in the process of pruning trees throughout the course.
          With late fall here and winter not far away we are going to have some frosty mornings. Normally we will have several light frosts this time of the year and I would syringe the greens to remove the frost if the temperatures are above freezing. However, if we have temperatures in the 20's I will wait until it reaches 35 degrees before syringing to prevent any further freezing and or shocking the grass with warmer irrigation water.  On mornings when we have a hard freeze, I may have to close the greens to play until the frost has melted. The frost itself does not harm the greens however walking on the frozen grass blades does. When there is frost present on the greens, the normally resilient grass blade becomes brittle and breaks when stepped on, killing the grass. The damage from walking on frosted greens will not be immediate but will show up within 48 to 72 hours. The grass does not grow back, so a footprint made on frosted green will be there all winter. A short delay while the frost melts can preserve the quality and health of the greens. If there is a delay due to frost or freeze. My staff and I will be vigilant in monitoring the greens and will let the Golf-Shop know when it is safe to play the greens. Please keep in mind that if the greens on the course are closed to frost the putting green and the chipping green are also closed.
 Check the Clubs Facebook page for updates, we will post the day before when the forecast is for freezing temperature and you can call ahead to the Golf-shop on mornings that the temperatures are in the 30’s and they will let you know if we are under any delays
During the winter when the turf is dormant the grass does not stand up to a lot of traffic. Excessive traffic on dormant turf will wear the grass down to bare soil. To avoid this, we will be restricting carts to Cart Path Only when the fairways go into dormancy.
  From the Greens Crew and I, have a Merry Christmas

Brian McMinn, GCSAA
Georgetown Country Club