Now that the rainy season is upon us, and summer not far behind, it is the perfect time to perform some preventative maintenance on our greens drainage. As you can see from the picture above, Joe Miller, our irrigation/drainage technician, spent some time this week flushing clean water through the drainage pipe under the greens. Joe uses a special nozzle, pictured to the right, that does a great job clearing out any debris found in the pipe.
Over time, the drainage system will collect debris and may eventually become clogged. During frequent irrigation, or rainy weather, the soil inside the greens can fill up with water rather quickly. A clogged drain doesn't give the water anywhere to go, therefore the root zone will become saturated and stay that way. This causes the greens to become very soft, disease is more frequent, and the roots will die back up to the surface (making them very short). This compromised root zone does not allow the turf to handle all the typical stresses of summer, and often results in thin, or dead, turf.
Realizing how important the drainage system is to our success, flushing out the drainage has become a fixture on our annual preventative maintenance schedule. We feel that by keeping our drainage system working properly, as well as a comprehensive cultivation program, we have the best chance to maintain quality putting surfaces year to year despite whatever weather challenges we may face.