Bemidji Town & Country Club Online Newsletter - 8/1/18

Course Update

I thought it would be a good time to update our members and guests on the current conditions.

Environmental Conditions

Up until July 14th we were blessed by Mother Nature with several rain events in May and June. The last few weeks we have not had any measurable rain and as a result our course is starting dry out. From July 25th to this date I have been watering fairways, tee, greens and the surrounds every night. Looking at the 10 day forecast it doesn't look like we will be getting any rain. We will be doing a lot more hand watering and placing sprinklers in the rough for the next few weeks.

BTCC Conditions
  • BTCC subsoil is mainly made up of course sand and gravel.
  • Our irrigation system only irrigates 45 acres of the total acres of our property, greens, tees and fairways. Virtually no rough is irrigated by our system.
  • Trees on the course have extensive root system that as of right now are sucking limited amount of moisture out of our sandy gravel soil.
  • To date we have for the most part been able to keep our prime turf areas well irrigated.
As you have all noticed there are areas on the fairways and tees that have brown spots that would tell you that we are not watering enough. There are a number of reasons for this.
  1. The technology for the 1985 irrigation system is outdated in terms of the quality of heads and the placement of the heads.
  2. The brown areas you see is a condition called hydrophobic soil, which means the soil under that area will not accept water.
  3. A lot of our prime turf areas and rough areas are very compacted from cart traffic, maintenance equipment and foot traffic. Compacted areas do not allow moisture to get into the profile as needed.
What we are doing to solve the problems
  • Extensive hand watering to areas that are not receiving enough water from our irrigation system.
  • Needle tine aerification on tee, areas on greens and fairways to relieve compaction and open up channels to allow water into the profile.
  • Injecting and spraying wetting agents.
  • Wetting agents are a compound that when applied into the system help to make better use of the water.
In summary we are experiencing some extreme conditions at this time. Let's all hope Mother Nature will be nice to us from this point on. I hope this update assures you that we are doing our best to get us through it.

Tom Johanns
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