Preparing a Golf Course for Winter!

Ann Kelly Golf course maintainancce, Uncategorized

Recently in Calgary Alberta, Kerry Watkins, the Grounds Superintendent at the Glencoe Club shared his information on the critical process of preparing a golf course for winter.  Similar processes will be carried out wherever a course is blanketed with snow.

Kerry stressed that superintendents must make decisions based on history, types of grasses, weather, and amount of money available.  Fall is an important time in preparation for winter, so that minimal time will be needed in the spring for the course to be playable.  Procedures as follows;

1. Mower heights are raised and the frequency of mowing is reduced.

2. Irrigation system must be blown out.

3. Fertilizer and Fungicides are applied – anyone using these products must be certified.

Fertilizer will maintain a strong dormant season and be easily available to the turf in the spring.

Fungicide is critical to prevent SNOW MOLD which will kill the turf.

4. Accessories on the course are removed and refurbished.

***Special care must be given to the GREENS, as it is the condition of the greens by which a golf club is judged!  The general practice is as follows;

a. Aeration to relieve compaction and help with drainage.

b. Fungicide spread – to prevent the dreaded Snow Mold!

c. Top-dressing done with a heavy layer of sand

You may have heard of other covering methods such as straw or tarpaulins. —  this will depend on a superintendent’s decision.

To winterize an 18 hole course would take from 5 – 10 days.   And… often in the end, despite the planning and the labour, it may be Mother Nature who has the last word!

Thanks Kerry!




Ann KellyPreparing a Golf Course for Winter!