A week as a GreensKeeper at Broadway Golf Club.

Having little or no experience at Turf care and maintenance I took it upon myself to go and work at Broadway Golf Club for a week.  It is a local Golf course to Hidcote with an amazing reputation.

The first day started as many others have done before, high winds meant a high volume of leaves to clear off the golf greens.  At an 18 hole golf course you can imagine how long leaf blowing 18 greens can take, especially when being followed by golfers keen to get a round of golf in early in the morning.

Mowing the aprons  (The area of slightly longer grass which wraps around the perimeter of the green)

Mowing the aprons
(The area of slightly longer grass which wraps around the perimeter of the green)

Once the morning leaf blowing was complete it was onto mowing the aprons for me, a lot more fun than it sounds.  Although the order in which you have to mow around the greens to avoid the golfers is somewhat more complicated than you would expect.  The usual routine would go as follows; 14,17,1,2,3,8,7,6,5,4,18,9,16,10,11,12,13.  This order could always easily be adjusted depending on greens being played etc.

As you can see from the photo one of the green keepers kept a close on my stripes.  (luckily the greens were due to be top dressed anyway so my wonky lines were hidden soon after this photo)

As you can see from the photo one of the green keepers kept a close eye on my stripes.
(Luckily the greens were due to be top dressed so my not so straight lines were hidden soon after this photo.)

One of the days at the golf club I was lucky enough to be able to have a go at greens mowing.  The direction of the mow changed every time they were cut, which at this time of year is around 3 times a week.  In summertime however the greens would be cut almost every day.

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One of the more unusual machines to drive at the golf club was definitely the greens iron, effectively rolling all the lumps and bumps out of each green and keeping them nice and flat.  The machine is driven in a sideways motion and moves considerably quicker in one direction than the other and therefore can almost throw the user from their seat.

(As I soon found out for myself)

Caps are used to protect the spare hole.

Caps are used to protect the spare hole while not in use.

Soil profile after and new hole has been cut.

Soil profile after a new hole has been cut.

Once the old hole is filled with the plug shown above the edges are top dressed to help the grass heal and bind back together.

Once the old hole is filled the edges are top dressed to help the grass heal and bind back together.

A task that would only ever be carried out on a golf course is hole changing, mainly to give the golfers variation but also to save on wear and tear of the greens.  On the greens at Broadway golf club they operate a two hole system.  One hole will be in play and the other capped for use later in the week.  Each green would usually have two hole changes a week, in high season they would be changed more frequently.

This quite impressive looking machine is remote control and used on steep banks where its almost impossible for a mower to get to.

This quite impressive looking machine is remote controlled and used on steep banks where its almost impossible for a mower to get to.

 

 

 

On my last day at the golf club I was lucky enough to be involved in the re-modelling and re-building of a bunker.  The main bunker on hole 11 was too big, the idea was to reduce the bunker in size by a third and build a second bunker off to the other side.  This was partly to deter golfers from hitting a shot to the left towards a building and also to make a straight drive down the right side more easily attainable.

Before

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After

IMG_20141030_131127

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2 comments

  1. Douglas Needham

    Golf course work is a great way to learn striping and maintenance of high-impact turfgrass. Maybe you can do some striping with our Turfgrass Team when you’re at Longwood. They do concentric rings, plaids, waves, and stars-and-stripes patterns as part of our outdoor display.

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