Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Course Update - April

Just as the weather appeared to be improving we have been subjected to yet more cold, northerly winds which have had an impact on growth and turf quality. This is more noticeable on the greens and surrounds where the Poa annua in the sward remains dormant and weak whilst the finer Fescues and Bents have begun growing and show better colour and health. This variation in growth has led to inconsistent putting surfaces which we are working hard to rectify. The use of lightweight rollers has had some success however we do not expect the growth to even out until warmer conditions finally arrive so we ask for your patience in this time.

Course Maintenance

The team have applied slow release fertiliser to the tee tops which will continue to provide the adequate nutrients required for grass growth in the coming months. Small doses of fertiliser have also been applied to the greens to aid their growth as and when the temperature begins to rise.
The surrounds and approaches have been scarified in two directions to remove thatch and moss and are now awaiting top dressing when growth becomes more vigorous as we do not wish to smother the grass plants.

Behind the scenes in the workshop our mechanic Gary has been busy servicing the fleet. We have a lot of machinery at La Moye and maintaining it is vital to the smooth running of the department. All of the machinery undergoes a basic service each winter, with the mowers receiving extra attention on their cutting units. Every cutting unit has been thoroughly checked and parts replaced if required before going into the grinding machines to resharpen the blades. The cutting units on these machines are incredibly accurate and providing this quality of cut to the grass leaf minimises damage and reduces disease.

10th Tee

In conjunction with our ongoing links regeneration program we have been introducing links species to the car park and clubhouse areas. Our aim is to provide the links experience at La Moye from start to finish and therefore the 10th tee bank, being seen on the drive into the club, was selected as a prime area for renovation. The mixed hedge was unsightly and not in-keeping with our vision for the course so it was removed entirely. The soil was then removed so that it could be replaced with sand before planting Marram grass. The Marram was sprigged in the same fashion as the 1st tee and we are delighted with the results. We now feel that the members and visitors are given an immediate impact that they are entering a links golf course and is another step in returning La Moyes true character.


Members will have noticed more tree removal work centred around the 10th green/11th tees area. This is again to control non-native and invasive species encroaching on playing areas or disturbing important habitats. The trees removed and trimmed behind the 10th and 13th greens were blocking the line of sight from the 11th tees. We understand that whilst the remaining trees are non native they do provide safety from errant shots on the 11th tees so they shall be retained purely for this reason.
Important work has been carried out on the right of the 11th carry to remove many invasive Holm Oaks that were beginning to overwhelm the smaller pine trees in the area. The picture below clearly shows the damage these fast growing trees can do to native species by blocking their light. With the Holm Oaks removal the pines and dune species now have a chance to recover and continue providing habitats to Red Squirrels, Green Lizards and a variety of bird species.

The logs from the Holm Oaks have been put to good use in the creation of our first 'insect hotel' next to the 4th tees. By tightly stacking and part burying the logs they can provide a shelter for many insect species and in turn a food source for larger animals. Holes of varying diameter were drilled into the larger logs to provide refuge for solitary bees which are an important pollinator on the course.