Monday, November 18, 2013

Man's Best Friend

Not exactly the type of update that I was hoping to send out, but given the nature of the information, this is probably a justifiable forum to be used given that many of you have a very strong interest in the words and feelings that this post passes along.

On Monday, November 18th, Mulligan took his final lap around the golf course before he lost his battle to a tumor on his spleen. At the age of 15.5 years old, reality told us that this day would be coming, we just didn't know when.

Mulligan was always a part of my life on the golf course. For 15 years, every morning started the same. My alarm would go off and Mulligan would head down the stairs to wait by the door to make sure he wouldn't get left behind. For those of you that know me, how many times did he not make it to work with me? Not very many. Why? Truth be told, he would become completely incorrigible if he was not allowed to come to work. He would much rather sit in his basket within the confines of my office than stay at home with a house to himself. After all, if he was at home, he would miss out on a possible opportunity to take a ride around the golf course, chase squirrels, go swimming or con some unsuspecting member into sharing half of a turkey sandwich. Even in his final days, he was always willing to fight the pain to make it to work. Work was always filled with excitement, or at least the potential for excitement. Where else do people carry treats in their golf bags? Nowhere else but work, and he knew that with 100% certainty.
For those of you that allowed him to be a part of your lives, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I especially want to thank Dr. Jill Windy and the staff at Noah's Landing for taking such good care of him through all of his ailments. He far exceeded anyone's expectations, but to those of us that knew Mulligan, weren't surprised.

So, as I write this blog post, I want to say thank you to Mulligan who was the perfect example of "Man's Best Friend".
  • Thank you for showing me what unconditional love is all about
  • Thank you for teaching me the value of true friendship
  • Thank you for sharing your enthusiasm for work because I didn't always have it
  • Thank you for being a good listener whenever I thought the course was in bad shape
  • Thank you for always being a footwarmer on cold nights
  • Thank you for being a playground for our kids when they were toddlers
  • Thank you for allowing me to use you as a napkin when I didn't have one

 So long my friend. Thank you for being you. Enjoy your next chapter in life, the perfect pond awaits you.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Cartpath Renovation Complete

Yesterday, 10/24, the renovation of the cart paths along the clubhouse, #9 green, #10 tee and the bumpy section of path by the practice tee were all renovated and/or resurfaced. Niblock Excavation arrived early Thursday morning and was able to complete the project in one day.  Because of the cooler temperatures, the paths will be open for use beginning today, 10/25.

The path along the clubhouse has been significantly widened to accommodate cart traffic in two different directions. Enjoy the new paths! Below are some pictures from the project.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Renovation Plans for #18 Green

By now it should not come as a surprise to any of you that the timetable for the renovation of #18 green has been altered from the original plan of having it completed by the end of October.  Due to the relatively short time frame we had to work with, Mr. Hills was unable to secure a contractor that could complete the work within the window of opportunity that we had available to us.  Because of this, we are now shifting the renovation plans to this coming spring.

Mr. Hills has chosen a contractor with a significant amount of experience (currently completing a renovation at Oakland Hills) that is available this spring.  The goal is to hopefully begin in mid-March and have the work done in 10-14 days, depending on the weather.  As soon as the winter snow begins to melt, we will utilize a solar blanket to help increase the soil temperature of #18 green and get it growing earlier than the other 17 greens on the golf course. This will allow us to cut sod and renovate the green even if the temperatures remain cool.  After the renovation is done, the blanket will be placed back over the green in order to speed-up the healing process.

With the proper weather, it is my hope that we can come close to our original plan of opening the green in early to mid-May. Obviously this schedule depends on Mother Nature, but I am optimistic that we have a good plan in place that will lead to a successful project.  The picture below shows the proposed plans for the renovation. please click on the photo for a larger view.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Cartpath Renovations at the Clubhouse

Work is now well underway on the widening of the cartpath along the clubhouse. Beginning tomorrow, 10/22 the crew from Niblock Excavating will be here to complete the final prep work for the project.  A majority of the prep work has been done by our staff already and the photos below will give you and idea of the work they have completed as well as provide you with in idea of how wide the new path will be in comparison to the old path.

Paving is scheduled for Thursday, 10/24. Given the weather forecast, I don't assume there will be much golf being played, but please check with the staff in the Pro Shop to obtain instructions on how to access the Practice Facility. All carts will need to stay off of the paved areas for a day or two.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Aerification Update

Unfortunately, sometimes plans don't always work as originally hoped. Yesterday the weather looked like it was going to cooperate, so I gambled and decided to aerify the Back 9 greens. As soon as we began the cleaning process, we were met with about 20 minutes of a light, misty rain which brought the process to a grinding halt. Once the plugs are pulled, it doesn't take much moisture to really create a mess and this is exactly what happened yesterday (Monday).

Because of this minor set-back, we will now be finishing the Back 9 greens today (Tuesday) have been forced to move the aerification of the Front 9 green to tomorrow.  Sorry for the inconvenience.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Greens Aerification Update

Aerification hole completely filled with sand

We were originally scheduled to aerify greens this week (10/3 and 10/4), but due to the poor weather forecasted, we have elected to postpone this process until Monday and Tuesday of next week (10/7 and 10/8).  This will allow you to enjoy the greens for another weekend. Come on out and enjoy!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Fall Project Update

It took a while, but we finally received some much needed rainfall.  Until September 19th, we had gone since August 3rd with only .17” of rain.  This stretch of dry weather was eerily similar to last year but thankfully the dry spell came later in the year when the days are shorter and temperatures are cooler. All in all, we managed the dry spell without any major issues and are set up well for some spectacular fall golf.

Incredible color change after a much needed rain!
Traditionally, fall is a very busy time for us in the Grounds Department. This year is no exception. Not only do we have our typical maintenance of the golf course to complete, but we have several major course improvements that are scheduled to be completed.  Beginning in October, my staff and I will be making some changes to #4 and #14 fairways, renovating some tees that need leveled and aligned, resurfacing cartpaths, treating and removing trees that have been damaged by Imprelis, performing our normal tree work to improve the golf course, and, of course, the renovation of #18 green.

#18 green is, without a doubt, the hot topic of the fall.  Most of you will agree that changes need to be made in order to make the green more playable than it currently is. Beginning in October, Arthur Hills and one of his contractors will begin working on the renovation of the green. As of the writing of this article, we do not have a final plan of what will take place, nor do we have a set schedule, but one will be on the way shortly.  Stay tuned to the blog as this will serve as the primary source of information for the project.

I will provide detailed information regarding each of these projects and why they are taking place as we get closer to the actual work taking place. Until then, please stop me if you have any questions or concerns and I will do my best to get you the information you need.  

Lastly, greens are scheduled to be aerified on October 3rd and 4th weather permitting. we will be aerifying 9 holes at a time, so please check with the Pro Shop staff to see which 9 will be open on these two days. Have a great month!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


To honor the lives that were lost on September 11, 2001, American flags have been placed on holes #9 and #11 today. We have done this for several years and feel it is the least we can do to pay tribute. Please observe proper flag etiquette and use the flag stands that are provided along side of these two greens.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Fairway Aerification Complete

After a long two days of hard work by the crew, fairway aerification has been completed. All 18 holes are open so come out and enjoy your golf course.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Fairway Aerification

Just a reminder that we will be aerifying fairways this week. The course will be closed on Tuesday and we will have either the front 9 or back 9 open for play on Wednesday through Friday. The weather looks great and our hope is to get this completed as quickly as possible. Thanks for your patience and remember, this is a short term sacrifice for a long term gain. Have a great week!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Never a Good Time

As we head into the holiday weekend, you will undoubtedly notice an area of soon to be dead turf in the middle of #14 fairway. This was caused by a blown hydraulic hose on one of our older fairway mowers. Since we are scheduled to aerify fairways next week, the repair to this area will have to wait until after the aerification process is complete. Luckily we have plenty of sod on our nursery. Like the title says,  there's never a good time for this to happen.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Defense Wins Championships

The popular motto “defense wins championships” rings true, not just in sports, but in turf management as well. It’s not necessarily what we do when the heat and humidity arrives, but more about what we don’t do.  For example, a majority of the month of August brought drier and cooler weather that allowed us to play offense and push the turf to provide some great summer playing conditions. We have just finished a stretch of Invitationals, various Club Championships, the Boys and Girls Club Ryder Cup event and a PGA Section event where, in my opinion, the club and golf course were at peak conditioning.

Now, as we work through our second hot stretch of the summer, it is time to play defense. The height of cut was raised slightly to increase the amount of leaf tissue on the plant giving it a better opportunity to generate the necessary energy to survive, mowing days are occasionally skipped and replaced by rolling to reduce stress and irrigation is kept to a minimum. The need to minimize the amount of irrigation may sound counter-intuitive because of the heat, but we need to reduce the possibility of various types of diseases from developing.  Moist soils, thatch and leaf blades make an ideal environment for pathogens to grow and create harm to the turf. By reducing the irrigation, we reduce the moisture available to the pathogen. On days when we don’t mow fairways the dew is mechanically removed by two carts dragging a long hose across the playing surface to knock the dew off of the leaf blades allowing them to dry more quickly. In periods like this, every little trick helps.

Removing dew from the fairways
The two uncontrollable wildcards are the humidity and rainfall. That is where our plant protectants (fungicides) come in. My general philosophy is not to apply these products unless it is absolutely necessary or if conditions warrant the need for them to be applied. Obviously, during periods like this, there is certainly a need to make applications to protect the turf and allow it remain as healthy as it can. Because of this, our sprayers have been quite busy over the course of the last week or so. 

Extremely high canopy temperatures. Time for Defense!
By combining all of these practices, it allows us to pick up where we left off as soon as the weather becomes a little more seasonable again.  Rest assured, the conditioning of the golf course remains our top priority, that’s why we take these necessary steps.  I was quite pleased the other day when some of you actually approached me and were inquiring as to whether we would be going back on defense during this period of hot/humid weather. I wasn't just pleased because interest was being shown in what we do, but more so with the fact that my previous communications through newsletters and the blog are being read and understood. For that I say “Thank You”! 

Sprayers ready to go when necessary
Throughout the year, particularly during stressful times of the season, I enjoy reading fellow superintendent's blogs. One of my favorites is the one my friend Chris Tritabaugh at Hazeltine National (hosting the 2016 Ryder Cup) has put together and updates quite frequently. He just posted a similar message to his membership and I felt you would enjoy reading it. It can be found by clicking here. It's well worth the read and I'm sure you will see a common theme between our two posts. Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

A Friendly Reminder

Over the last few weeks I have had several questions regarding replacing divots in the fairways. Not specifically about how to replace them, but more in regards to why individuals are not replacing them at all. My honest answer to that question is that I don't really know, but it has certainly escalated to the point where I feel like I need to give everyone a gentle reminder to make sure that they get replaced regardless of size or shape. I will also use this opportunity to remind you to please use the Practice Facility for practice and not our fairways (see photo below).

 Practice divots not replaced on #2 fairway
The follow-up question always seems to be "Why don't we have sand on the carts?". When sand is available on the carts, it is human nature to go to the quickest/closest solution. We have found that when sand is on the carts, there is very little, if any, attempt to retrieve a divot. A perfect example is the par-3 tees. We provide sand for the divots, but how many divots are actually replaced? I won't spend this entire post reviewing common course etiquette, but will refer you to a post from two years ago as a reminder. The post can be found by clicking here. Some of the agronomic references in the linked post don't necessarily apply right now, but the basic concept of course etiquette still holds true.

Below are some sample photos that I took this morning to use as an example to answer some of the questions about divots and ballmarks.

Fairway Divots:  If the divot contains roots, it has a very good chance to survive. Regardless of size or shape, please replace any turf that is removed after a shot. Not every divot will recover, but by replacing what is removed, it gives the divot the best chance for survival and also keeps the course clean and minimizes the damage to mowers from divots that are not replaced.

Large, deep divots have a very good chance for survival. 
Thin divots like this have a decent chance to survive, but it
depends greatly on the weather.
Skimmed divots generally will not recover, but should be replaced
out of habit to help keep the course clean and fill the void left by
the shot.
Ballmarks: it takes approximately 5 seconds to properly repair a ballmark. A properly repaired ballmark will completely heal in 24 hours. An unrepaired / improperly repaired ballmark will take 15 days to recover on its own.

Note: Never push down on your repair tool to bring soil to the surface.
(Click for a larger view)

If the end result of repairing your ballmark looks like this, it was
not repaired properly. 

Friday, July 5, 2013

Cartpath Work

On Wednesday and Thursday of next week (7/10,11) we will be repairing a portion of the cartpath on #13. Everyone is aware of the poor condition that the path is in and it has finally reached the point where repairs will no longer mask the problem.

#13 cartpath

The plan is to remove a 50 ft. section of the path that will serve as a test area and replace it with asphalt millings as opposed to traditional asphalt.  Why you ask? A vast majority of the path on #13 runs through a wooded area. Over time,as the trees have continued to mature, the root systems have led to cracking and heaving of the asphalt. Since it is highly unlikely that these trees will be removed any time soon, we are going to use asphalt millings instead of asphalt so that the chances for cracking are greatly reduced.

Raw millings before rolling

After the millings are in place, they will be rolled with a heavy roller. Because the millings still have asphalt properties, they should compact into a relatively solid surface that can withstand the daily demand of golf course traffic. You will notice a difference, but the hope is that this test area works well enough that it will provide us with an alternative material for cartpaths in areas where we have significant damage due to tree roots.

During the replacement, this area will be roped off from traffic and carts will need to drive around where work has been done. Most likely, the path will be opened for play by Saturday.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Trail Running and Golf Courses: What's the Connection to Elcona CC?

Enjoying a run in Arizona
As I have mentioned before, I love to run. Not just running for 20 minutes, but the kind of running that can take up a good part of an afternoon. Crazy? Maybe, but it's something that helps me stay grounded when I'm not working. It is one of the few things I've found I can do that actually shuts my brain "off" allowing me to enjoy nature and put any stresses temporarily behind me. No thinking, no talking, no e-mailing, just running, looking and listening to the sounds of nature. What does this have to do with golf courses, more specifically Elcona CC? Bear with me.

Trail at T. K. Lawless Park
I recently took a much needed day off last Sunday to spend time with my family and to take a break from work.  One of the things we did was to make the 25 minute drive up to T. K. Lawless Park in Michigan. While there, I was able to sneak in a quick trail run. During the run, I began to notice several trees that had been marked with paint. Upon closer inspection, all of the trees that were marked were Ash trees. I actually stopped a couple of times just to look at them.  For the remainder of the run, I kept noticing dozens of Ash trees that were showing significant signs of damage from the Emerald Ash Borer.  If you are a regular reader of this blog, you probably remember a previous post that I did referencing the Emerald Ash Borer. If you need a refresher, it can be found here.

Immediately my brain switched back into "work mode" (so much for not thinking when running) and I began to think about how the forest would be impacted by the loss of Ash trees just as Elcona has been impacted by the loss of most of our Ash trees. No matter what we do or don't do, these trees are destined to die, regardless of what setting they are in. Many of the forested areas throughout the Midwest have already lost or will lose thousands and thousands of trees because of this insect and there really isn't anything we can do about it. Much like the Dutch Elm Disease that all but eliminated Elm trees beginning 60-70 years ago, the Ash trees will slowly be decimated by the Emerald Ash Borer. The irony in all of this is that cities and towns encouraged the planting of Ash trees as a replacement for Elm trees because of their hardiness and ability to grow well in street settings just as the Elms did.

Unfortunately, there are only a few remaining Ash trees on the golf course itself.  We continue to monitor their health and will keep you updated as they begin to decline.  The most notable Ash tree showing signs of damage is the one located directly behind #1 green.  When it comes time for this tree to be removed, it will not go unnoticed.

Large Ash tree behind #1 green 
As this blog post was essentially writing itself as the miles ticked by on my run, I came upon this sign (please read) in the middle of a forested area that appeared to have been there for hundreds of years.

Cue the thinking once again. Most of you are aware of Elcona's past and how it was built on what used to be a farm. Since the club was established in 1956, it has transformed into an environmental habitat on so many levels. Far too many to discuss in what is already a lengthy blog post. The first thought that came to my mind is the wooded areas that Tom Zimmerman began establishing in several areas within the golf course.  Over the course of 57 years, these areas have been transformed from farmland to woodland that has become a home for several species of native trees and wildlife.  This is one of several reasons that we have become a fully certified golf course with the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program. Please click on the photos below to get a better idea of how much Elcona has changed over the years.

Elcona CC 1961
Elcona CC 2011 (50 yrs later)
Wooded area that was once farmland between
 holes #16 and #17 and has been allowed to flourish.
This is a slightly different post that normal, but I thought you might enjoy a little change of pace.  Look forward to a Course Update to be posted shortly. In the meantime, I'm going for a run to see what other crazy connections I can come up with. Stay tuned. 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Course Closed!

Today (Monday 6/3) the golf course was closed, but for a good reason.  We, the Grounds Department, have been given a day to ourselves to perform many necessary tasks that are much more easily accomplished when we do not have to worry about play on the golf course.  We receive very few of these throughout the golfing season, so we need to take advantage of them. Below is a list of tasks that were accomplished today:
Venting of the greens 1/4" hole, 6" deep

  • Usual Monday mowing schedule completed
  • Greens
    • Topdressed with sand
    • Vented
    • Sand drug in
    • Rolled to smooth surface
    • Sprayed a soil directed fertilizer and wetting agent application
    • Watered greens to move spray application into the rootzone and wash in sand
  • Approaches
    • Topdressed with sand
    • Sand drug in
  • All fairway divots filled on the Front 9 and holes #10 and #18
  • All divots on Practice Tee filled
  • All sprinkler heads edged on holes #1-4 and half of #5 (approximately 300 heads)
  • Practice Tee fertilized
  • Practice Tee, Target Greens, Practice Fairway and Short Game Fairway sprayed with fungicide and foliar fertilizer
  • All rough around the greens sprayed to prevent grub damage
  • All rough around fairways and fairway bunkers sprayed to prevent grub damage
  • Trim around trees and signs along CR21
  • 1 blog post written
Normally this schedule would have taken days to complete if we were to attempt it during play due to the need for my staff to stop what they are doing and get out of the way to allow play to come through.  I cannot emphasize enough how important and beneficial days like this are during the season. As I look at the golf calendar, our next closed day does not arrive until July 22nd. We will anxiously be awaiting this day as we hope to accomplish as much, if not more than today. Many thanks to my staff for a great day of work!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Course Changes

As a follow-up to the mass email that I sent to the entire membership earlier this week, here is the blog post, as promised, with some more detailed information about some of the changes we are making to the golf course this spring.

The first photo below shows what the ridge on the 18th green will look like for a while.  As stated in the email,  Arthur Hills, architect of the green, made a return visit to check on the green and to evaluate some minor scalping issues we were having at the crown of the ridge that runs between the two tiers.  Under his recommendation, we will be aerifying the ridge 3-4 times with the hope that the ridge will soften over time and that the scalping will be eliminated. The holes will not be filled in order to encourage the soil to settle more rapidly. It's a little difficult to visualize based on this photo, but hopefully you get the idea.

Aerifying the ridge on #18 green

Another change that was implemented during last season, was the narrowing of the collars around the greens from two mower widths to a single mower width.  This has been a long process of multiple aerifications and mowing at gradually lower levels in order to achieve the final result, but I believe we are finally there.  This next photo shows the appearance after what should be the last aerification of the collars.  During the visit from Mr. Hills, he specifically commented on how much he liked this change and felt it helped establish better definition around the greens.

Finally made it! Successful transition to a narrow collar.

An additional change that Mr. Hills strongly recommended was to eliminate the Intermediate or "step" cut around the greens.  He felt this would help accentuate the change to the collar, create even more definition and be a better architectural fit for the type of club that we have. He also felt the intermediate was far too forgiving since many people could actually putt from this area. This change was discussed at the last meeting of the Green Committee and was approved unanimously.  Below is an edited picture to help summarize the changes that have been made. I encourage you to click on the photo for a larger view.

Summarized Photo
If you have any questions or comments, please don't hesitate to ask.  If you haven't subscribed to the blog, simply enter your email address on the right side of this page where it says "Follow by Email" and you will be automatically notified whenever I publish a new post. Like I wrote in the email, your information will not be shared.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Course Update

Slow progress is still progress. At least that is what I am trying to convince myself right now.  This has been an unbelievably slow start to the season, especially when making comparisons to last year.  After looking back at our log book from last year, we continue to be every bit of 4-5 weeks behind.  Although last year was certainly an anomaly when it comes to early springs, it’s still frustrating knowing that the weather is not cooperating at a time when everyone is ready to get out and enjoy the golf course.

The weather is equally as frustrating for me as well. This is the time of year when we want to accomplish so many important agronomic tasks and we just can’t get to them right now. Spring fertilizer applications where they are needed, pre and post-emergent weed control and regular mowing schedules are all items we would like to get done, but we must show patience and wait for Mother Nature to tell us when the right time is.  If you maintain your own lawn, this applies to you as well. See me if you have any questions.

On the positive side, aerification of the greens, tees and fairways is complete and we have made our first of three applications to reduce seedheads on the greens. Notice I said “reduce”, not eliminate.  This application will not keep all seedheads from forming, but help to minimize the amount of them. Historically, we have had very good results and my hope is that this year is no different. As in year’s past, I have placed several 4’x4’ check plots (untreated areas) on some of the greens to help me better judge the results we obtain from this application.  If you would like more information on why we use check plots, look along the right side of this screen under “Popular Posts”.  The third one is titled “What Can You Learn from 16 sq. ft.” and will give you a greater insight.

Check Plot from a previous year

Several of you have asked me about the new, white labels on some of the trees on the golf course.  These labels serve the same purpose as the colored ribbons that were put out last fall. They are simply there to help me identify trees that have been diagnosed with varying degrees of damage from the herbicide Imprelis. These labels DO NOT necessarily mean that the tree is going to die or need to be removed; they just make it easier for me to obtain information without having to constantly look them up in spreadsheets.  To date, we have not finalized anything with DuPont as far as a settlement is concerned. As soon as we have the appropriate information, I will be sure to pass it along.

New Imprelis Tree Labels

With that being said, it’s spring so get out here and enjoy your club.  Even if it’s a little cold and rainy outside, there are plenty of activities going on inside the club for you to take advantage of. I look forward to seeing all of you and have a great month.

Monday, April 22, 2013

US20 Added Travel Lanes Project

By now everyone is aware of the US20 expansion project that will be taking place from CR17 in Elkhart to SR15 in Bristol. Last week I attended pre-construction meeting to meet with individuals from INDOT as well as Niblock, the company awarded the project.  Below, I have listed some of the main takeaway points from the meeting.
  • ·       Expect to see work beginning sometime during this week. The Right-of-Way is scheduled to be staked and tree removal will begin.
  • ·        The goal is to minimize any road closures of county roads connecting to US20, but some temporary and intermittent closures will be necessary. This includes CR21. There are no specific dates set for closures, so be prepared for this possibility if you use US20 and CR21 to travel to Elcona.
  • ·        You should fully expect an increase in traffic along CR21 due to motorists wanting to use it as a short cut when traffic is slow on US20.  Please use caution when coming in and out of the club and when crossing CR21 with a golf cart.
  • ·        This project is not expected to be completed until the latter part of 2014. The south side of the expansion will be done in 2013 with the north side completed in 2014.
  • ·        There will be minimal disruption to Elcona’s property. A few trees are expected to be removed at the intersection of CR21 and US20 but, beyond that, no other major removal is expected. Our fence along #2 and #15 will remain intact and the sign and landscaping along US20 should remain undisturbed.
  • ·         Major earthmoving will not begin until 6/10

Please let me know if you have additional questions.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

This is Not a Sandbox

The golf course has only been open for one day and, unfortunately, I already feel the need to address an issue that happens all too frequently.  I came in this morning to prepare the course for play and immediately saw this:

This is the bunker at #9 green that had been used as a giant sandbox and slide for a handful of kids.  I cannot  express enough how hard my staff works to provide you with a golf course that hopefully meets or exceeds your expectations. When this happens, it requires us to spend additional time and resources to make the necessary repairs.

 Not only does it impact my staff, but it impacts you as well.  The excessive traffic causes the sand to lose its firmness and become excessively soft leading to plugged balls.  If you wonder why this bunker tends to be softer than the others, damage like this is the reason why.  As you can see in the picture above and below, a significant amount of soil has now been mixed in with the bunker sand because of the "extracurricular" activity. This now makes the sand contaminated and it will not drain as well and will most likely create even more inconsistency.

Purchasing more bunker sand is a temporary but very costly solution.  It costs us approximately $1,700 for a truckload of new bunker sand and a bunker like this would easily take 1/2 - 3/4 of a truckload.  Obviously, this is not in the budget right now.  The real solution to the problem is to eliminate the use of bunkers as a playground. Thank you for reading and the next post will be much more positive...I promise! In the meantime, get out and enjoy this fantastic weather.