August 4, 2010-Storm Update; Tournament Season

August 4, 2010

The summer of 2010 will definitely be remembered for numerous severe storms, heat, high humidity, and overall stressful conditions for anyone associated with the golf course industry. 

As of this writing, 1″ of rain has fallen in the Hoffman Estates area.  The future radar on does show the majority of storms being out of the area later this morning, and Hilldale Golf Club is open for play.  After receiving 4.5″ of rain on 8/24/10 and 1.5″ of rain on 8/31/10, the golf course is obviously saturated.  Some Chicagoland locations have received much higher rain totals than those, therefore we should probably  feel very fortunate that the golf course isn’t “wetter” than it is.  Carts will need to stay on cartpaths the rest of the day, and hopefully we’ll be back to our normal 90 degree rule sometime tomorrow (8/5/10). 

With “tournament season” upon us, it is normally the time of year when turf conditions (firm and fast) are pushed to extreme levels in order to maximize playability on greens and fairways.  Due to the severe weather we’re experiencing, the Hilldale Grounds Department will need to be very careful and cognizant of these conditions when prepping the course for daily play.  Finer turf areas such as greens, tees, and fairways will need extra “TLC” in order to survive  and prosper through the remainder of the season.  Basically I’m talking about: less double-mowing on greens, extra hand watering, using blowers on turf areas where air movement is poor, and daily scouting (monitoring) to ensure disease activity is in check.  Several turfgrass diseases can be overly active and destructive during times of high heat and excessive moisture.  Nevertheless, everything possible will be done to ensure the golf course is in great shape as the season moves along.  Thanks for playing Hilldale and I hope to see you many more times before cooler weather arrives.    

Bryan Widmer, CGCS