Grass Clippings, 31st March

Grass Clippings, 31st March

Storm Katie left plenty of damage in her wake across the region this weekend. After inspections of the golf course on Monday it was deemed that the course needed time to drain from the previous night and to be cleared of the trees and branches that came down. Unfortunately the storm took out several of the eucalyptus trees on the 18th rough and the force of the winds has blown one of the new dry range canopies down the fairway. 

The unit is salvageable and, with repairs, will be back in operation soon with a more robust anchorage devices installed for the future. This week, once clearing up is completed, we will commence the count down towards the Gold Cup and getting the course ready for the event. It seems like a repeat of last year's spring with the cold start promoting little growth in any of the surfaces. We are trying to stimulate the grass to wake up with fertilizer applications in March, and there are signs that the rain this week will help to improve growth rates better still. Fingers crossed for some sunny days in the next few weeks.

With the garden in mind this week, start planting lily bulbs in pots for summer displays now to get ahead. Potting gives you the advantage that you can simply move them around the patio or into gaps in your borders as they come into flower. Use a good, multi-purpose compost and half-fill a container at least 30cm (12") in diameter and is sufficient for 3 bulbs. Cover with more compost and water in. Once the plants begin to shoot, move them to a sunny position. Feed with a liquid plant feed each week from the beginning of summer. If you wish to increase Hostas, now is the time to divide the root mass before the leaves start to emerge. Dig up the root ball and divide with the spade or old bread knife to increase plant stock or give away to friends. For a healthy start to the lawn, start by topping off the winter growth but do not lower the height of cut too quickly over the next month. Feed with a balanced N:P:K fertilizer (Nitrogen, Phosphors and Potassium) to improve the colour and stimulate the plant into growth for Spring. Repairs to worn or damaged areas can now be thought about but remember to rake out dead and thatchy material before leveling up patches and applying seed. Moisture is the key to success and not allowing the areas to fully dry out while seeds germinate or new seedlings are growing.

Peter Bradburn

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