Can you say drought! On average the amount of precipitation the City of Toronto receives in May is approximately 73mm, and as of today we have received 10mm. For the most part the irrigation system is doing a great job, but nothing beats the effects of a consistent rainfall. In droughts like this you see where your irrigation system has problems, and our main issue is on #18. We have found an area where the belowground wiring got crossed when it was hit during construction last fall and will need to be rewired to properly work again. We should have this completed by Monday, so manual irrigation will be used for now. Let’s hope for a nice rainfall in the next couple of days to alleviate some of the drought stress throughout the course. Until then try and keep cart traffic away from any browned turf areas to help with recovery.
I seem to be fighting an endless battle on #9 fairway—grubs. This area has never been a hotspot for grub activity in the past, so insecticides have not been used. Predicting where grubs will be is impossible, and chemical controls I have available will only work at the egg or early larvae stage. The problem I face: the grubs are now adult larvae and have begun pupating into beetle, getting ready to fly, usually around the beginning of June. Until this happens the racoons will keep tearing up the turf trying to feed on them. Once the raccoons have stopped I will repair the damaged areas and preventatively treat the hole moving forward.
It is maple key season, so the blowers will be out for the most part of each day. This usually lasts for a week or two, so during this time we will do our best to keep the main areas of play clear of keys.
The dead trees on the 15th hole will be replace under warranty by the contractor next week.
A quick reminder that on Monday afternoon and all day Tuesday the course will be closed so the staff can perform numerous cultural practices to enhance the health of the turf. Some of the cultural practices will include aerating, topdressing, brushing and venting. All these practices in some way enhance the playability and health of the turf.
Enjoy the weekend!
Ian McQueen, Course Superintendent