Tuesday, 11 October 2016

On Friday night the 7th October Pike Hills welcomed Alex Stepney to the club, for a "evening with..."

It was a fabulous night and Alex was a great speaker.

Our thanks also go to Graham Bradbury for his help on the evening as host.

Pictured below from left to right are , Graham Bradbury, Alex Stepney, 2016 Club Captain Bill Hopcutt and House Chairman Martin Robinson.

Thanks to everyone for their support.

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Work has started this week to Graden, which is essentially thatch removal from the putting surface. Below is some information on what Graden work:

Graden Contour:
Some golf courses have out of control organic matter, as bad as 12%. At that level they have no option than to mechanically remove it and put sand in instead to get the greens back to a healthier state – enter the Graden Sand Injector. Even if they have an acceptable level of organic matter a Graden fits into the maintenance scheme as prevention is always better than cure.

The Graden Contour Sand Injection machine is a scarifier/aerator with the ability to scarify to any depth from 1mm to 40mm, whilst simultaneously backfilling the grooves with either sand or a combination of sand and seed to improve drainage and rooting.
It works to remove thatch and organic matter that might impede water movement.  It sinks it into the ground incredibly deeply compared to a conventional scarifier using 2mm wide or 3mm wide blades spaced at 25mm centres to remove such matter and offer stability to the surface of the green.
The result is a lovely, true level surface with very little sign of any damage with only the parallel grooves visible. The green is playable virtually immediately, certainly playable within an hour or two. 18 greens would take between about 2 days to treat.
Full recovery can take upto 10 days dependant upon the climate and/or weather condition

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

The ditches through and round the golf course have now been all but cleared, amazing how much comes out of them. As you can see from the 2 images, it makes a bit of a mess with the heavy machinery but a vital part of getting the water to flow quicker, thus enabling us to open the course more through the winter and help drain the fairways.

The picture below shows the work on the 6th hole and how full it was with weeds, this will really improve the flow of water.

Monday, 12 September 2016

Golf course winter work 2016


1.  Finalise the work on the 7th bridge
2.  Relay the path with turf left hand side of the 1st green and 2nd tee box
3.  Bale the long rough on the course
4.  Turf all bare areas on the course
5. continue to clear the area for the new 6th men’s medal tee

1. Clear the hedges in front of the 8th tee also
   Clear the hedge from opposite the ladies 10th
    Tee round to the electric pole
 2. Remove the willow trees that surround the
     Pond on the 11th hole
 3. Remove some of the trees to the left of the
     9th green {to let more light on to the green]
 4. Remove potentially all the large conifers to
     The left of the 14th fairway bunker this will
     Improve the soil structure around the area
  5. Carry out pruning to other various trees
      Around the golf course
     All the work will be subject to the weather

                    Dave bell chair of greens

Friday, 9 September 2016

This Monday the 12th September the 6th Hole will be closed due to the clearing of the ditch down the left hand side of the hole. Marston Moor Internal Drainage Board will be there first thing, it will be closed all day, possibly into Tuesday morning early on, however one day should be enough. The 5th hole will remain open, although it will be a long walk to the next tee it is felt 17 holes is still better to play on the day.

This will allow the water to flow better and should allow more play through the winter months.
As you will have seen this week the ground staff have been very busy Hollow Corring the greens, this is some short term pain for long term gain!.  detailed below is some of the processes and reasoning behind this work;

The hollow tining of greens is an essential part of most golf course maintenance programmes. It’s a recognised and proven technique carried out every year at most UK golf clubs. Here is the lowdown on what hollow tining is and why it occurs.

So what is hollow tining?

It’s the physical removal of cores of turf from a playing surface. The holes are generally 13-16mm in diameter and of varying depths depending on the reason for the tine. The cores are ejected, swept up and removed. They make excellent compost. When completed, a smaller mass of soil will occupy the same area of green/tee/fairway.

Why is it done?

Course traffic causes the ground to become compacted and hardened. This means drainage is less efficient and the grass’s roots are prevented from absorbing oxygen. Hollow tining allows the compacted turf to expand and air and moisture to be more easily absorbed.

The coring helps address the problem of thatch. (Thatch is a layer of grass stems, roots, and debris that settle and accumulate over time.) A thin layer is acceptable but too much thatch will hold water like a sponge and close the course more in winter.

Tining also removes accumulated fibre in the grass’s root zone. It allows for the exchange of a poor soil for a better one through top dressing. That’s why the greens are normally covered in sandy top dressing immediately after they’re cored. We have added in excess of 35 tonnes this week alone, with possibly another 30 tonnes planned for next week

In addition, coring allows for overseeding: another effective way of improving the quality of the playing surface.

When is it done?

Hollow tining is generally done out-with the main playing season: often in early autumn. It’s important that the tining is completed before the weather turns wet and cold so there’s time for growth and for the holes to seal up. So the best time to hollow tine is late August /early September, but this coincides with the playing season at most clubs. We will possibly look to hollow tine very early in the spring season in preparation for the season.

I hope this helps people understand a bit more the reason and methods of this process.

Kind Regards
Alistair Burns
Managing Secretary

Friday, 2 September 2016


STRI agronomist Adam Newton came to Pike Hills on Wednesday 31st August for the second report of 2016. It makes interesting reading and proves we are certainly heading in the right direction.

there is still plenty of work to be done on the greens and around the course, but a positive report.