Course Care: How to fix ball marks, divots & practice facility best practices
Fixing Ball Marks (Pitch Marks) and Replacing Divots
As the season starts up, we wanted to take the time to go over some course care best practices. Below are two videos: the first outlines how to properly repair a ball mark on the green, and the second shows how to fix a divot. We encourage all members to take a moment to watch these. With the softer course conditions this spring it is even more imperative that we all make an extra effort to repair ball marks and replace our divots. The Professional Staff appreciates the numerous comments and concerns that many members have already made regarding finding divots not replaced and ball marks not fixed. We trust that by taking some time to watch these videos we will see an immediate improvement in the conditions of the golf course. Let’s all leave the golf course in the same or better condition than we found it.
Driving Range Procedures
To maximize the use of grass on the driving range, all members are asked to please place your ball at the grassy back edge of your previous divot removing just the necessary portion of grass with each swing. The middle example in the image below (linear divot pattern) is how your pattern should look after 30 swings.
A scattered divot pattern removes the most amount of turf because a full divot is removed with every swing. Scattering divots results in the most turf loss and uses up the largest area of a tee stall. As a result, the hitting bays need to be rotated more frequently and often results in an inefficient use of the tee.
The linear divot pattern involves placing each shot directly behind the previous divot. In so doing, a linear pattern is created and only a small amount of turf is removed with each swing. This can usually be done for 15 to 20 shots before moving sideways to create a new line of divots. So long as a minimum of 4 inches of live turf is preserved between strips of divots, the turf will recover quickly. Because this divot pattern removes the least amount of turf and promotes quick recovery, it is the preferred method.
A concentrated divot pattern removes all turf in a given area. While this approach does not necessarily result in a full-sized divot removed with every swing, by creating a large void in the turf canopy there is little opportunity for timely turf recovery.
Golf Balls on the range
New this year, you will have noticed the large green baskets of balls that we are placing on the range instead of the traditional den caddies. Our intention in 2019 is to provide an efficient and fully stocked practice facility without the added clutter that was evident in previous years. When using the driving range we ask all members to take ONLY the number of balls you require for your practice session and leave the green buckets in place so that other members using the range have balls available to them. We also ask you to practice within the spaces outlined - inside the ropes & dividers.
These best practices are essential in helping to maintain the quality and condition of the practice facility turf as we progress throughout the season.