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Monday, April 2, 2012

Driving Range Tee and Preferred Divot Pattern

The driving range is a high priority area due to logistics and the amount of use it receives from all classes of memberships, guests and clients.  The crew has made improvements to the range tee by increasing the tee size along with a special mist system that waters seeded areas.  We developed an irons only area and reshaped the main tee by taking the tier out of upper and lower tees, combining the two areas to increase square footage.
BIG IS GOOD and we need more square footage for today's needs. It would be nice to increase the tee size two-fold but real estate issues limit us in this aspect.  So to accommodate high priority practice days on grass throughout the golfing season, on certain days play is restricted to mats only.  As a group the Green Committee has scheduled mat's only on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Irons only Sunday afternoons. Mats will also be used during periods of inclement weather.  

The members have asked how to use the range in regards to divot pattern removal.  It is similar to managing a forest. Clear cutting leads to erosion issues, comparable to a golfer taking all of  his/her divots in one area. Large patches of seed and soil are moved or misplaced from mowing.  Removal of practice divots with rakes or blowers occurs and the areas that are cleared get washed away with rain which leads to a longer recovery period.  Leaving strips or clumps of grass, as suggested in the video, will help stabilize the soil and seeded areas from being moved mechanically or washing away.  Here is a thought from the Director of Grounds (and MSU Alumni) of The Philadelphia Cricket Club and if his methods are implemented, we hope to see positive results this season.  However, the real problem is still not enough square footage and a larger tee would be ideal.

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