Thursday, November 30, 2017

Turning Boards

During the winter golf season, the greens at Olde Florida Golf Club are single cut, single cut and rolled or double cut every morning in advance of play. The approaches to the greens, and the chipping areas around the greens are also cut several times a week. In addition, the traffic on and off the greens from golfers increases dramatically in the winter months. Consequently, extra care is important to maintain healthy turfgrass on the 48" collar that surrounds the putting surfaces.

To help reduce the wear on the collars, the golf course operations staff utilize turning boards from November to March. This is the time of year that the grass is growing the least, and the traffic from golfers and the mechanical stress from maintenance equipment is at its highest.

The turning boards we use at Olde Florida are made of high density polyethylene and measure 24" by 96". There are handles cut into each to help with the transport and movement of the turning boards. When cutting greens or approaches, each operator has at least four boards in their possession. When the green is being mowed, two or three boards are placed at each end of the green. The operator moves the boards after six to eight turns of the greens mower. The photos below depict the process.

Turning boards in place on 10 green
An operator approaching turning boards
An operator disengaging a greens mower on a board to make a turn  
An operator engaging a greens mower on the board to make his next pass on the putting surface
An operator setting a greens mower down on the putting surface 

Even with the turning boards in place, the collar and greens perimeters receive significant wear during the winter golf season. To help reduce compaction and encourage growth the collar and greens perimeters also receive periodic supplemental fertilization, hand watering and solid tine aeration or water injection aeration during the winter golf season.