The Marysville golf course was closed at the weekend due to the heavy rain and flooding event which affected many parts of Victoria.
The course has until now mainly remained open and the Saturday syllabus has been adhered to throughout the winter months. Both visitors and members have been rather perplexed as to how and why the course copes with the heavy rain and flooding. Is it the topography, the geology, the river system, the irrigation or just good management?
Our green keeper, Kellan Fiske, who is fully qualified in Turf Management, has a team of about six volunteers who assist him. Kellan was asked to explain why the course copes so well with an abundance of water.
The Marysville golf course has 18 holes, and is situated between the Steavenson & Taggerty Rivers. The majority of the course is on freely draining soil which was an old river bed. The topography and soil structure allows most rain to quickly make its way into the river systems. We have been very fortunate this year in that we have only closed our course for two days, due to the river flooding six holes. Even with such severe flooding the water receded within 48 hours. The snow on Lake Mountain, when it melts ends up in the Taggerty river, which doesn’t cause any harm to the course.
Like many courses in the Dalhousie district the greens are a combination of old “push up style” and newer “perched water table” sand constructions. The sand greens are designed to drain at high rates of over 100mm/hr but the old push up greens barely cope with 20mm/hr and that creates puddling. The greens are cored once a year, usually in Autumn, with hollow tines. This helps to get nutrients into the soil and with water penetration. We also do vertical mowing/ scarifying on the greens when needed.
The turf consists of mostly cool season grasses such as Bent grass, Rye grass and Fescues with small amounts of Common Couch. The climate doesn’t really lend itself to having warm season grasses as the dormancy period would be too long. Having cool season grasses means the course stays green all year round and the turf is growing slowly throughout the winter.
Many thanks to Kellan for explaining all that to us!
The Ladies Barton Shield final and the final round of the Men’s Championship have been rescheduled and will be played on Saturday 5th November and will be combined with the November Monthly medal.
Whilst the golf course was declared unpayable last Saturday the Bowling Green remained playable and a group of men from Melbourne played Bowls as a way of celebrating a friend’s wedding. Conditions were good and a lot of fun was had by all.
On Tuesday 11th October a number of members attended a working bee at the club concentrating their efforts around and in the clubhouse. Solar Panels, windows, signs, bins, and buckets were cleaned, the paving was power hosed, cobwebs were removed, and part of the bowling green garden was transformed. Many thanks to all those who attended and for making such a difference to the surroundings.