Grass Clippings, 18th February 2016

Grass Clippings, 18th February 2016

Peter Bradburn, Course and Ground Manager at Roehampton Club reports on the improvements being made around the Club, including our stunning 18-hole golf course. Plus, read on for tips on looking after you garden at this time of year.

Course Improvements
It is nice to report on a project that is advancing in a positive direction this week and has been supported by many people within the Club. The golf practice area near to hole 18 has served as an area for short-game chipping and bunker practice, from a less than inspiring bunker. Through the efforts of the golf committee, Head Golf Professional Richard Harrison, Chief Executive Marc Newey and Golf and Games Manager Tristan McIllory we have now been able to thrash out a plan on the development of the area that takes one step further to completion. The contractors are on course to lay the artificial surface for the covered bays so these units can be placed on the ground by the end of February. The practice bunker has been lengthened and freshly revetted, which means that the first phase of this year's task to upgrade the area is on target.   

In the summer months, when the conditions are more favourable, we shall be contouring and placing 'sympathetic mounding' between the practice approach area and the 18th hole to re-enforce safety of the area. In the autumn, we plan to re-grade and turf the practice green and improve the pathway near to the Fairacres fence line. This will give better access to the practice golf nets and landscaping that was undertaken at the beginning of the year. All this has been achieved through the hard work and creativity of the golf section, especially the greenkeeping team and Ian Vass, our resident 'man on the digger'.

Open Garden Square Weekend
This week I have also attended a London Parks and Gardens Trust meeting that has spearheaded the scheme 'Open Garden Square Weekend' for almost two decades. The initiative is to allow public access to London's private gardens and squares on a one weekend in the summer. This year the Club has agreed to take part in the scheme on the 19th June with funds raised by ticket sales from the event returned back into the Trust. Other participants that support the scheme include 10 Downing Street, Osterley House and Rainham Hall. I will in due course report on the preparation for the event and how we will support the Trust with our help.

Your Garden
For the green fingered folks now is the time to re-design parts of your garden that have been neglected for some time. Deciduous trees and shrubs can be planted in bigger containers or planted into the garden. There is still time to finish pruning your shrubs, trees and rose bushes that require work before buds begin to form and grow. Divide any snowdrops that are beginning to overcrowd, post flowering, to increase the overall density of planting areas. Forgive me for repeating myself but during these days of frosty mornings, take care to protect tender shrubs and plants especially if the weather changes and the winds get stronger. Wind scorch at low temperatures can be one of the most problematic issues come spring and the failure of plants to emerge in good health for the rest of the year. Finally, lay your Begonia tubers in a shallow box in a mixture of compost and sand to ensure good drainage by the end of the month or the beginning of March. Keep the mixture moist at all times and place the box into full sunlight, but avoid frost as Begonias will not tolerate any frost damage. The tubers will sprout and produce a firm root system and you will have well-developed plants to plant in your garden during May.  


Peter Bradburn
Course and Grounds Manager


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