Hopefully members have been able to read the STRI reports from last year (they are available in the Club Docs area of the Members Hub App) and are aware of the need for us to reduce the levels of thatch in the putting surfaces. We started this process last year with additional hollow core and dressing treatments and members were informed of the intention to continue this positive action though out this year starting with the use of a Graden machine in March.
However, due to a combination the sudden improvement in weather conditions and likely return to golf on the 29th March. Our Course Manger made the decision to bring the planned maintenance in March forward and it is being done right now. The reason for bringing it forward is purely to have an increased period of recovery before the members return to the course. The surfaces are still a little soft but on balance this decision made perfect sense, especially if temperatures remain as they are as the grass type we have begins to grow and recover well once soil temperatures reach around 10 degrees Celsius.
Effectively it is a deep scarification that removes a higher percentage of thatch than the hollow core process whilst at the same time filling the grooves with sand to firm up the surfaces and dilute the thatch levels further. This treatment works down to a depth of 20mm, but this is the depth requiring most attention, hollow core treatments will be used later in the year to reduce thatch at a greater depth.