This past week and in the coming weeks restoration of the course from the flood will begin to ramp up. This past week we installed bent sod and bluegrass on the tees that have been rebuilt. Some of this sod came from Barrington Hills (from tees they are rebuilding). Once the sod is rooted down we will then restore the second half of the tees (in about 2 weeks). This week we also begin construction of the maintenance road/path. This area of the course has always been a challenge to keep turf alive and will be a big improvement. We will add the red crushed granite to the top when finished.
This week we also installed the sod for the temporary greens (#10 and #13). so that when we begin construction of the new greens in a few weeks these will be ready for play. No major projects are planned for next week with MGI, but after MGI we will ramp up repair work. The contractor has been picked and will begin work on raising #10 and #13 greens. A soils engineer has specified the geo grid and building process to make the greens remain stable within the peat. The goal is to raise the greens ~16" higher then they currently are. Turf that was about 4" higher on #13 green survived, so we believe raising the greens 16" should give us some added insurance. These will be built to USGA specifications and seeded in late August. If all goes well the greens will open in June of next year.
After MGI we will also focus our efforts on restoring the rough. Seeding of weak areas and roto tilling of the worst areas will begin. It is possible these areas will be recovered by late fall. It will be a busy August and September, but by late September most of the work should be completed. Thanks needs to be given to Makray Memorial and Inverness CC for loaning us the seeders for the fairways and rough.
We are restoring the course to a level much better than it was prior to the flood - two new USGA greens, 4 new raised and level tee complexes, leveling the rough with better turf and a new maintenance cart path to name a few things. It is now time to make some lemonade out of lemons and thanks to the membership for their support and understanding I am confident the end project will be will worth it.
|New maintenance path from the shop to right of #13. You can see the rich dark soils of the peat.|
|The geo grid being installed - the same material will be used under the new greens.|
|Grade 8 limestone then is installed (8"). After this in compacted the red stone will be put down, in a few weeks.|
|Work continues to restore #1 and #8 greens. Each week we add seed and a soil mix to the weak areas of these greens. The weather has been ideal for recovery.|
|A hand tamper makes small holes, in which bent seed is added. Then sand/soil mix is brushed in to give seed/ soil contact.|