Turf Care Blog – May, 2017

Turf Blog – May 2017

 With Spring now in full swing, we are off to the new golf season of 2017. Unfortunately, the weather hasn’t been as cooperative this year as it has over the past couple of years and we’ve been hit with a significant amount of rain over these first two weeks. Since April 26th to May 14th we’ve had a total of 140mm of rain in the Halifax region. While the drainage system at Brunello is top notch, with these cool day and night time temperatures, the grass plant is not actively growing and therefor not taking up much of the rainfall, meaning the drainage system is doing much of the work.

While the weather maybe a bit sour, it has not stopped maintenance from getting work done. In late April, we were able to verti-cut our fairways, and last week we brought our height of cuts down on the greens, and got our first cuts on all of the roughs. Additionally, we’ve been working around the clubhouse getting much of the landscaping done to the addition to the clubhouse. More work has been done to the practice facility at the back of the driving range, and we planted a few new trees by the tees on hole #5. You will also notice some improvements done along some of the tree lines where more trees and branches have been removed so players can easily look for their balls. Much of the work has been done on holes #1 through #4, and will continue moving forward through the course as the year goes on.


This coming week looks more promising weather wise, so hopefully we see some sun and warmer days.

Johnny Connor
2nd Assistant & Environmental Steward

Turf Care Blog – August, 2016

August 5, 2016 – Turf Blog

We are at the point in summer where we have hit a bit of a heat wave over the past few weeks with high weather pressure and humidity. This is generally when turf diseases start to occur and we have to have our eyes out for the first signs of it so we can apply fungicides to prevent any out breaks.

Typically, in this region we only have a few types of diseases to watch out for, such as dollar spot, fusarium, and brown patch.  Other regions, that get hotter and more humid than here, have even more to contend with and thus have to spray more regularly.

Once we’ve determined that the environment is right for a disease we will go out and spray a fungicide at what they call a “preventive rate”. Essentially this is a low rate that protects the plant from being infected. Should we decide to hold off from spraying it can be a matter of merely a day in which a major outbreak can occur.  We then have to spray at a “curative rate”.  This is typically double to three times the amount of a preventive application would require.

In addition to the heat and humidity, we have been dealing with a disease on our fairways called “Take-All Patch”. This disease normally occurs in newly built golf courses during the first 3-5 years due to high pH levels in the soils. You may notice brown/reddish circular shapes in the fairways, this is Take-All patch. It’s a very manageable disease for us as we spray a combination of fertilizer products and water it in after to help prevent it from spreading. Over time this will be less prevalent as the course matures.   The photo below shows a Take-All Patch from #6 Fairway.

Johnny Connor
2nd Assistant & Environmental Steward

Turf Care Blog – May, 2016

With the start of the season the Turf Care team has been making its transition to getting into our daily routines now that the golfers are back on the course. Much of our staff from last season has returned with a few new faces joining the team. April was a busy month of sodding our 6 new forward tee decks and patching areas in the fairways that never fully grew in last year. We like to do these projects this time of year because we aren’t in the way of golfers and aren’t dodging golf balls while were out there, but also with the cooler temps and dampness it allows the sod to grow in better and requires less attention in terms of water.

In addition to the cooler weather, this also means the grass isn’t really growing very fast due to the low soil temperatures. As a result we may reduce the areas the carts may go on the fairways until the conditions start to change with warmer days and nights. With the Spring we’ve had so far, hopefully we aren’t too far away from that.

I’ve been out numerous times this year spraying liquid fertility to the fairways and greens to help stimulate growth more quickly to help “green up” the place.

Other than the addition of the new forward tee decks, one new change you’ll see is that we are growing in a “fringe” or “collar” around the greens. You’ll notice some red spray paint dots around the greens which marks out where this will be growing in so our greens mowers to cut into the area. Over the next couple weeks this will start to become established and more noticeable. We think it will help with some of the wear and tear our Greens Triplex turning on some of the greens that have sharp slopes on them. Hopefully it also adds to the playability of the course and slows the ball from rolling off the greens. We’d be happy to hear some feedback on this over the year!

We maybe in for a wet week of weather but we certainly could use the rain as the course and the woods were becoming quite dry, and as we’ve seen out West with the fires we don’t want to be in any position that our friends out there are dealing with right now.

See you soon!

Johnny Connor
2nd Assistant & Environmental Steward

Turf Care Blog – February, 2016

Welcome to The Links at Brunello – Turf Care Blog. Here, we will keep you up to date with the golf course maintenance taking place throughout the year and help you understand the purpose of some of our maintenance practices and their importance in keeping the golf course healthy while at a high standard of play.

While it may be the middle of winter, we have been busy over the past couple months with a number of projects to provide some winter activities to the community. These include building our skating rink on the tennis courts by the main parking lot and #10 tee, grooming trails for cross country skiing & snowshoeing, and continuing our tree cleaning project.

As the season came to a close in the Fall last year we continued to clear out trees out around landing areas to help golfers locate their balls more easily. We focused primarily on the #12 and #13, clearing out areas along the fairways and behind the greens. Hopefully this helps golfers find their balls and helps keep the speed of play up in the coming season. This will also allow of the trees we left to grow healthier by taking away the weaker trees that compete for sunlight and soil nutrients.

In December we built a frame for the rink inside the tennis courts anticipating we would be able to get started on making ice before the holidays. However, Mother Nature wasn’t on our side and provided us with another mild December. Fortunately we had a bit of a deep freeze during the week of January 18th where we got the right temperatures to make some ice and began flooding the rink. Once established, we have since been able to hot flood the rink much like a Zamboni to maintain a smooth ice surface for skating. This will be done on a daily basis so long as the weather permits us to have the water freeze over. Additionally we have cleared some snow off of the pond on #4 hole (access via Timberlea Village where Hampshire Crest. and Yorkshire Dr. meet) to make room for more skating surface and where hockey will be permitted to play. While it appears that we are in store for some milder temperatures this winter, we ask that you be patient with us should we have to close the rink during these times, not only is it for your safety but the quality of ice could be compromised if we permitted skating during these times.

The cross country ski trails are currently being worked on as we have partnered up with the Nova Scotia Cross Country Ski Association to help assist us with grooming these trails. We will be out there moving snow around and towing our trail groomer when the conditions are right, which may mean us being out there in the evening. The trails will follow along our cart paths and offer multiple routes, whether you’d like to ski the whole 18 holes or just a few holes we will have something that you can enjoy. Again with the warmer temperatures there’s only so much we can do until we get some snow and colder weather.

If you are out snow shoeing we welcome you to explore the course but we ask that you to stay off the greens, tees, and fairways while you are out there, and try to walk along side the cart paths. The compact snow will turn to ice damage the grass beneath come Spring time when we are trying to open the course for play. This is why we fence off our greens during the winter months as they are the most important part of the golf course and why we try to divert traffic away from them.

One last reminder, should you see us driving around in any of our utility vehicles or tractors we ask that you step off to the side at least 5-10 feet just for safety concerns, sometimes a small patch of ice can cause our equipment to slip and we may not have control of where it slides to. We appreciate your cooperation and hope to see you out there!

Until next time!

Johnny Connor,
2nd Assistant & Environmental Steward