Keith Bartlett, superintendent for the St. George’s Golf and Country Club, will be a key man in the weeks leading up to the 2010 RBC Canadian Open. As the Open gets closer, Keith will be contributing a regular blog on GNN, describing his experiences and what goes into preparing the course for a PGA Tour event.
The PGA Tour agronomists arrived last Monday afternoon. We toured the golf course and everything looked good.
The to-do list was very minor, but we had another stressful week of weather and it was hot and humid through the night.
The Pythium disease that I wrote about in an earlier blog is still hanging out. On a few afternoons, the relative humidity dropped and we’d be watering again, so it was a double-edged sword.
It was so hot again that, because we had no play, it allowed us to put some blowers around greens and the divot area on five, which is a low area that wind doesn’t go through. We started blowing across some of these surfaces to cool them down.
A lot of my colleagues are seeing if they can back off on some things to give the plants a break.
The main thing that the PGA Tour agronomists have been having us do is measure green firmness, green speed, speed through the day – is there any significant change? – but from where we were last Monday to where we are today, we’re reaching our targets.
We don’t want the greens to get too fast. They were rolling at 10-and-a-half, the wind was blowing and the ball started moving too fast. They will probably be at 11 for the tournament, but if it gets humid, they may get a little sticky, so we’ll see.
Right now, the rough looks to be about four inches until a senior official takes a look and then, we’ll see.
We have practice rounds and the Mike Weir Charity Classic Monday morning, so the time has arrived and everyone will get their first looks at our preparation over the next couple of days.