The clip below, which ran last week on GNN, is definitely worthy of a do-over.
It was a tweet by Jason Hooper, golf course superintendent at the Quilchena Golf and Country Club in Richmond, B.C., that illustrates this summer’s drought.
Stage three water restrictions, which means no watering of fairways from a golf perspective, are in place in Vancouver and on the Sunshine Coast to the north, that’s been bumped up to Stage four, which means no watering of tees and greens if you’re on municipal water.
From the Quilchena perspective, here’s the effect.
— Jason Hooper (@superjhooper) August 25, 2015
The way that golf ball bounces, golfers will surely appreciate the bounce they get on their drives and the resulting distance gain as long as they stay in the fairway which, judging by the colour in the clip, may not be as well accepted, at least by North American standards.
One can only imagine the response if the greens were hit by water restrictions, as well. Let’s put it this way, you probably wouldn’t want golf course rankers to show up with such conditions in place if you actually believe in that rankings are important.
The golf industry has been discussing the possibility of water shortages/restrictions for years and what’s happening in B.C. and certainly the past four years in California is sending an emphatic message that such a reality may be closer than we think.
Hopefully, El Nino decides to have a big splash this year and not only waters those thirsty fairways and greens, but gets the reservoirs back to where they should be, but there are no guarantees and what’s to stop it from happening again once El Nino passes?
The lack of water affecting golf in western Canada and the United States is one reason that the industry has been discussing the past few years how golfers may have to accept what is perceived by many to be lower standards of maintenance.
By that I mean brown fairways or rough areas grown in to reduce cost of maintenance, especially if we are heading into a recession, as many believe these days. Budgets can also be a big reason for conditions changing from lush green and manicured to more natural and brown.
Will such conditions become reality faster than we’d expected, given recent weather and the direction the Canadian economy is headed these days? That’s the subject of this week’s GNN Poll.
You can vote below or on the GNN Poll and we welcome your opinion on this subject in the Comments section below.
Will recent droughts and the economy force golf operations to change their course conditioning more quickly than first anticipated?
- YES (83%)
- NO (18%)