Superintendent's Reports


Given the recent cold weather the course is holding up really well, As those with lawn at home would well know, grass really slows down its growth rate during the colder months and without growth you get very little recovery from the wear and tear that daily use creates. So thank you for adhering to cart signage and for staying out of roped off areas, it is helping us control some of the worn areas on the course to hopefully get some grass coverage in these areas. 

Irrigation wise we completed the 13th fairway and 13th green last week which completes another hole tee to green! This week we started the 14th fairway and will finish off there next week. So this hole will be shortened again next week where possible. Hats off again to the crew for their efforts and thank you to our members for being so understanding. By doing this it gives us a decent go with the job at hand, and gets the job done more efficiently.

While were working on 14th the temporary green has had another load of seed put on it to try and get it though its next stage of use. You may have noticed 3 rubber snakes on the green, these are in please as the green attracted some unwanted attention from a few corellas (birds) that can destroy a green in no time by ripping it apart with there breaks while looking for underground bugs or our new seed. So please if you do notice any birds on the green causing damage, please chase them away and let the office or proshop know as soon as possible so we can try and do something about it. But to date our rubber snakes are doing the trick.

We have ordered a 10ft flag pole for the 4th green to make the  flag visible from the bottom section of the fairway. hope to pull the G. U. R sign from the new bunker at 4 next week, we are just waiting for the turf to 'nit' in. 

Congratulations to the Mens pennant team who came away with the win on Sunday, and good luck this week against Wynnum!!

Stay warm and happy golfing,

Jai Rochfort


We received a very nice thank you letter from 'Laura' in the pro shop complimenting the 'boys' preparation work for the trainee pro-am last Monday.  Jai has overseen course presentation for this event for the past 3 years.

The 4th approach greenside bunker has been completed but remains GUR till the turf knits. The primary concept behind this project was to make the bunker visible from as much of the fairway as possible, secondly to divert storm water around it instead of into it.

Further work is planned to modify the reverted trial bunker left of the green and create a small mound to divert storm water into the existing drain near this bunker.

Irrigation to the 12th tee is complete. This is a milestone event for Peter and his crew as now it's down to 6 greens and 6 fairways to finish the project.

Next week we plan to close the 13th hole, the temporary green will be in play.

Faithfull Gardens
We now have a group of volunteers to prune and tidy this garden, we will organize a day and time via email. 

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent


The 4th approach greenside bunker has been 'roughed in' and should be completed next week.

Except for a bit of tidy up work Irrigation to the 6th green has been completed. It proved difficult as we had to locate several services, including the old fibro main, 240v power, live old irrigation pipes, and repair unknown drains, then it rained so we had to deal with sticky mud. There are 6 greens left to do.

Next week the 12th tee is planned which complete all tees.

Faithfull Gardens
I have been asked for volunteers to prune and tidy this garden. Please email myself or the office if you can help. So far we have only 3 members available to help.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent


As Sunday is the final of club championship, greens will be mowed then rolled, bunkers raked and holes moved to championship locations.

As reported we plan to complete the 4th approach greenside bunker starting on Monday.

Irrigation has been installed at the tee area of our back-driving range which completes all practice areas.

Next week we aim to install irrigation to the 6th green therefore the hole will be closed for most of the week. The 16th will be divided into two holes as in the past.

The greens committee have asked me to remind players to follow cart directional signage to our new asphalt paths.

Paths have been constructed to protect the golf course from excessive cart wear, an example is the right side of the 10th green where carts have destroyed turf and created wheel ruts. Additional rope barriers have also been erected.

Tree work has been completed. A member suggested that there may be a kookaburra nest in the dead trees on the 15th, I asked the tree loppers to check before cutting branches, they reported there was no nest.

Faithfull Gardens, I have been asked for volunteers to prune and tidy this garden. Please email myself or the office if you can help, we can then plan a time and date.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent



The usual fairway areas were very wet on Friday, please observe and follow cart signage until these areas dry out.

We have laid turf around the new path past the 3rd tee, please keep carts off until the turf takes root.

Irrigation to 13th tee has been installed, leaving only 12 and 14 to complete all tees. The 14th tee is planned for next week.

Due to Thursdays rain (14mm) we had to postpone tree work on the 15th which was targeting two dead trees near the green and Cadagi trees. Work is now planned 21st June.

I attended an interesting seminar on dam aeration. Our Aquamaster aerator works brilliantly but ideally it should run 24hrs a day.

Submersible air diffusers are available that are designed to diffuse air from the bottom of the dam, fed by a small air compressor. The advantage is they are much cheaper to run, almost silent and aerate the entire water column effectively, if fitted they could operate at night as currently we can’t run the pumps and aerator at the same time.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent

In my absence our ground staff have been very busy preparing the course for the club championships.
We still have issues with insect damage on 3 greens, while there is little effect on ball roll we have seeded areas with Poa trivialis and lightly top dressed so as to provide winter turf cover.
As growth on the greens has slowed, we are also rolling more and mowing less. Cup collars have been removed as apparently they are controversially considered illegal. Our concept was that they protect the ‘legal size’ of the hole and have no effect on play, also they look great and the plastic liner is no thicker than plastic paint when it is applied thickly (for TV).
The Greens Committee has asked us to erect rope barriers to protect worn areas from further golf cart damage. The worn area by the 4th tee, we plan to create mounds to direct carts to the path provided.
The Committee has asked us to complete the irrigation by the end of the year. To do this we will close a hole from Monday to Friday and play the 16th as a par 4 and par 3. The Ladies championships is an exception which we will work around. From Monday 21.5.18 the 17th hole will be closed.
The Match Committee has taken responsibility for marking GURs especially in areas where the Kikuyu was sprayed.
Thank you Jai and our staff for a great job in preparing the course for the championships in following our agreed work programs and keeping me informed with regular phone contact while I was on leave.  Also to Peter for taking the lead role in the irrigation project and completing the main line, as always a job well done.
Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent
Hello Members,

Well it has been an interesting week weather wise with 34ml of rain early in the week which is a little bit unusual for this time of the year, and snuck through almost undetected by most of us I’m sure. The days have been a warm 27 degrees but the night time temperatures definitely dropped significantly this week and the day time temps are going to follow suit next week. This morning was the coldest yet at 11 degrees, and with the 25-40kph west south westerly wind that kicked in yesterday set to stick around, the "feels like" temperature will be even colder..!

Pro Tip for days to come - Pack your warm gear!!!

The big achievement this week has been the completion of the sub-mainline at the 6th. This completes all of the mainline with the exception of a little piece that will run from the 9th and connect back into the new line where it all started down near the irrigation lake. This piece will be the last thing we’ll do which will eliminate the old fibro mainline that keeps the holes going that are still on the old system. So from here it’s fitting new sprinklers and valves servicing the remaining holes. Massive pat on the back to Peter James and his right-hand men Neil and Josh who through hard ground, challenge after challenge and with all the setbacks that come with this kind of work have put blood, sweat and……. sometimes nearly a tear into it and still manage to finish the day with a joke or two and a smile on their face..! Well done boys!!!

I have been sourcing trees to replace some of the pest trees that we have been removing across the golf course… These will be in the form of native eucalypt species that are koala food trees and are already found on the golf course, keeping with theme that is our little patch of paradise..!

As reported previously you would have noticed the ‘off looking’ patches in a few of our greens, mainly 7,8,10… This is leftover damage from a pest insect that has been treated, and we are seeing recovery in the form of new growth throughout these areas albeit a little slower than in the warmer months.

We over seeded tees with rye grass a few weeks ago to help these high impact/traffic areas through winter, if I could please ask a small favour mainly on the par 3’s, if you take a decent divot could you please try to replace as much of the divot as possible as the rye grass will not regrow like a couch grass will in its infancy… Or better still just pluck the ball neatly off the tee not disturbing the grass at all for a few weeks……… Jokes aside, this will help keep grass on our tees coming into the hardest time off the year as far as grass is concerned.

Many thanks, and keep warm…
Jai Rochfort
Assistant Course Superintendent 

All greens were spiked this week with an 8mm solid tyne to relieve compaction and allow air to circulate in the soil profile. This process is extremely important for the root structure of the plant enabling the roots an easier passage into the soil profile below. It still blows me away when moving a hole or just taking a core sample, how so many new roots spring to life and find their way to the most accessible part of the profile. That of course being the miniature holes our tynes have created, and all at once like rats up a drain pipe, funnel down these holes giving us a deeper, happier, healthier root system and leaving us with stronger, happier, healthier plant that we all see on the surface.

The tree loppers have removed more of our environmental weed tree (cadagi) from the left-hand side of 18th, left and right of the 1st and behind 2nd tee. We have certainly noticed a big difference in amount of leaf and tree litter in areas where they have already been removed over the past months, this also means “everybody’s favourite” THE BLOWERS are spending more time locked away in the shed which is more peaceful for all involved.

Irrigation has been ticking along this week with some hard ground to get through beside the 6th tees, and a few other unwanted surprises getting in our way which slowed us down somewhat. Saying that, some progress was made in this next stage of works and all are hoping for a better run at it next week.

Many thanks again to our members and their guests for your ongoing patience and words of encouragement during this time, as we keep working away at these projects making our golf course an even better place.

Until next time, enjoy these beautiful Autumn days and play well.

Jai Rachfort


As greens were starting to ‘thatch up’ we gave them a light scarify and top dress with sand. This was perhaps our last chance for a mini renovation prior to winter. Some greens are more noticeable than others, but all are putting ok.

Our new irrigation main from 13 to 14 is complete, next week we commence the final link from the 6th tee to the 6th green. We plan to shorten the 6th hole during the next two weeks so work can be safely carried out.

Next Thursday we aim to remove more Cadagi trees,  again for safety reasons we may need to shorten holes. Leaf litter has been noticeably reduced since this program commenced.

Tees have been over sown with Rye grass to improve winter wear and protect the couch-grass base.

I am away on leave for the next 2 weeks, Peter is looking after the irrigation and Jai is in charge of course presentation.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent


Our new irrigation main from 13 to 14 was initially slow going due to live pipes every few meters which we had to locate and trench under, then we hit rock and two unknown live pipes. Now that we are out onto the 14th progress has been much better.

I was asked why don’t we get a trenching contractor to speed up our irrigation installation?

The answer is we only want to trench as much as we can clean up each day. Imagine if we trench an entire fairway then a rain event occurred it would be a huge mess.

Also, there are no plans locating any services and many live old system pipes are live and still in use as well as 240v power to the irrigation satellites, lots of drainage pipes, town water and even the sewer main to the half-way house. A contractor could cause underground carnage.

Another question was why did we decide to remodel the large 4th greenside bunker when we have irrigation work unfinished?

We have completed irrigation to the 4th so work such as bunker improvements and new paths can now happen, this bunker has been a maintenance nightmare for years. Given at the time we experienced several short weeks due to public holidays, our key irrigation staff were unavailable then ongoing wet weather made it unsuitable to attempt trenching it was decided to undertake a small worthwhile project. We are currently accessing the suitability of the sand on the bunker face and why it remains unfinished.

As reported we plan to shorten the 14th hole on Monday so work can be safely carried out.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent


Our course has finally started to dry out, which enabled us to catch up with a few spraying jobs.

Kikuyu in fairways has again been treated with Monument, results so far are promising.

Next week we aim to finalize prep work on our new path edges.

The club has agreed to purchase three new machines to replace our old topdressing machine, bunker rake and sidewinder surrounds mower. Delivery is expected soon.

The extension of the safety fence at the 1st tee has been delayed. ‘Country Club' the company erecting it have advised materials are a few weeks away.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent


Our course is extremely wet in places. Carts are permitted but cart directional signage must be followed. 

Please park where signs direct then walk to your ball. (90-degree rule applies)

The Asphalt team have completed sealing our new paths. When the rain stops we will lay turf to complete the project.

As reported, our new irrigation has stalled due to recent wet weather. Our initial plan is to install the 100mm main to service holes 5, 6, 12, 13, 14, to complete the entire main line.
Mark Gahan 
Course Superintendent 


With Mark away on leave, I will deliver this week's report. I will keep it as brief as I can, because I have also put together a not so brief account of my recent experience in Perth at Lake Karrinyup Country Club helping the course staff with their tournament preparations for the World Super 6's. It was an amazing experience that I would happily do again and again. I thoroughly enjoyed putting together this 'light hearted' insight into the goings-on behind the scenes of a big televised golf tournament preparation... Please have a read as you will get a laugh out of it, at the same time it will answer a few questions I've heard golfers asking from time to time about these tournament courses we see on TV. It really did surprise me the lengths that these places go to trying to provide perfection.

The past few weeks has seen howling winds follow me from the east coast across to the west coast and all the way back again!!!  These winds as we all know by now leave our course trashed with debris. This means all hands on deck until some sort of order is restored across the course. This week it came in the early hours of Wednesday morning taking no prisoners on what is always the busiest weekday of all by numbers, and by quite a few. So after losing my hat to the wind and the dark during a pre-dawn course check, I rallied the troops and re-jigged everything to give us the best shot at being out in front of the Wednesday competition and staying there. All staff ripped in, leaving in their wake a golf course that had been prepared to the best possible standard considering the conditions with minimal if any interference to golf... A massive wrap to the lads for their efforts during a testing time weather wise, with its weekly assaults of either extreme heat or gale force winds knocking everyone around a bit. Top effort!

Not letting the wind/debris clean up pin us down for too long, we also managed to solid tyne all greens even though we lost a good day thanks to some bearings that decided enough was enough!!! Well done Steve Cannings for your efforts on this one..! And hats off to the green keeping gods who gave us a nice drop of rain with precision timing! Rain is awesome for the course at the best of times, but coupled with a solid spiking it is a 'marriage made in heaven' or better still 'made in our soil profile' flushing away all the nasties and unlocking all the goodies..! Perfect!

We also laid 180 square metres of turf on the 4th where the bunker remodelling is... we were a bit short of turf, so we will get a little more early next week to finish part 1, before raising the main face in stage 2.

Finally I'd like to thank Laurelle, Kerry and Teegan for their efforts taking my 23 page hand written and very messy 1st draft of my Perth experience, with heap of photos thrown in and turning it into what it is today for all to read. Staying back working into the night on a Friday, as they could see what it meant to me to have it out today..! Thank you so much Ladies... I'd still be tapping away with my 2 index fingers at this time next year if it were me typing...

My report on the trip to Lake Karrinyup Golf Course is under the member's news section of the Mi-Club log in area alternatively by clicking this link. 



Jai Rochfort



Last Sunday evenings storm smashed us again- all of Monday and most of Tuesday was spent cleaning up the debris.

We have shaped stage one to improve the large front greenside bunker on the 4th. Turf is planned for next Thursday. Stage two is planned to raise the bunker lip by 600mm to improve visibility from the fairway and divert storm water around the bunker.

As reported drop zones are provided on both sides of the bunker- the nearest drop zone is where to drop.

Due to the storm clean-up we now plan to commence irrigation work to the 15th tee next week.

Kikuyu in fairways will be resprayed with Monument next week. Results so far are promising.

I am away on leave next week- Peter and Jai will be looking after the course.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent



As reported we dusted greens during the week. The reason we are applying more sand than usual, turf grows vigorously at this time of year and to maintain true surfaces we need to work extra sand into the thatch profile to compensate for growth.

We started work on improving the large front greenside bunker on the 4th. Drop zones are provided on both sides of the bunker, the nearest drop zone is where to drop. Work is expected to take a few weeks to complete.

Next week we also plan to commence irrigation work to the 15th tee.

Tree roots, I spoke to an unhappy member whose ball came to rest surrounded by large tree roots on the 18th hole. Our President (and rules expert) explained to me that it is simply bad luck as the roots were plainly visible and a drop or more defensive shot is available to the player. However, when path work is being carried out on the 18th we will cover the roots in question.

Our greens 2IC Jai Rochfort is in Perth helping present the Lake Karrinyup Golf Course for the Super 6 tournament. He has reported a valuable learning experience in first class presentation and course conditioning, I’m sure he will have ideas for Redcliffe on his return.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent



After last Sunday evening gale force winds tree debris again trashed the course, most of Monday was a clean-up day.

During the week greens were solid spiked with 8mm spikes to a depth of 125mm, this is to improve air movement, relive compaction and encourage root growth.
After rolling there was little evidence of what had occurred. We plan to lightly top-dress greens on Monday.

We have been spraying the weed ‘crowsfoot’ in roughs, some discoloration to our couch turf is likely to occur.

We applied wetting agent to irregular dry areas on fairways 3, 4, 9. This is a soil condition called ‘dry patch’, basically the soil resists water penetration, thought to be due to soil microbe activity. Wetting agents reverse this by penetrating the soil drawing water with it, additional irrigation is also being applied.

Worn entry points where our raking machine entered bunkers on the 3rd and 10th have been turfed and a new entry point placed in a revised location.

Boundary trees along the 2nd and 8th have been pruned, falling sticks had been an issue to neighbours.

Thank you to greens director Shane Kruger who helped us clear a lot of aquatic weed from the pond on the 2nd hole.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent



Our dam has saved us again, Unity Water was unable to supply irrigation water since the Xmas day storm until last Wednesday - some 16 days of hot weather. Prior to our dam there would have been absolutely no irrigation available to the course.

As reported, greens were top-dressed last Monday, ball roll has improved which is one of the benefits of regular sand dusting.

Sea water from unusually high tides have damaged turf in the roughs along the 16th and 17th.

As reported this week we sprayed Kikuyu grass in fairways and green surrounds. Yellowing Kikuyu is starting to indicate sprayed areas.

We have been patching worn ‘couch mite’ effected areas on green surrounds 4,15,16.

As a trial we sprigged a worn bare area to the right of the 16th green with Buffalo grass. This grass is reasonably shade and salt tolerant, we will see how it preforms.

The low part of the top putting green suffered irrigation issues a few weeks back and is slow to recover. We may need to patch it with turf from our nursery.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent


During the week all greens were aerated using 8mm solid spikes to a depth of 125mm. After rolling there was no visible surface disruption. We plan to lightly dust them with sand next week.

Due to recent rain and humid weather we are mowing fairways and roughs twice weekly. Continual cleaning up of leaf and tree debris is also very time consuming. 

Unity Water has been unable to supply irrigation water for over two weeks due to rain events.

We have shaped the small 5th bunker and plan to turf around it next week. We decided to keep it as a bunker as it adds to the visual enhancement of the hole and it will be easy to maintain.

We plan to continue installing irrigation as weather permits concentrating on smaller projects such as tees.

Thank you to Jai and our staff for presenting the course last week and efficiently restoring bunkers and paths after the rain event. I was on leave in Rosebud for the week getting our holiday rental ready for the summer season.

Mark Gahan



Mark is on annual leave this week and has left me in charge of the golf course and compiling the weekly report.

Tuesday saw us complete the final short run down the 4th hill with our new irrigation works. There were a few areas of very hard ground that unfortunately slowed us down during the trenching process. A big thankyou to all staff involved in what was one of the bigger holes to be completed. A special mention to Peter James who worked until dark Monday, fitting the last few sprinklers to ensure the hole was back playing its full length for the Tuesday. Thank you to all of our members and guests, for your understanding and encouragement as we make our way through this massive project.

As I am sure most of you are aware, we were hit with a deluge of rain throughout Wednesday and Thursday that didn't help. A total of 58mm was recorded at the shed, which caused some issues on the course. Our bunkers and deco paths were damaged as the rain washed out sections of the paths and dragged sand off the face of the bunkers, leaving it piled up at the base. We will be doing our best to fix these issues and to ensure that the course is in good condition for the weekend.

Finally, can I ask that anyone who uses the back driving range please pick up their own practise balls. Lately there have been bunches of balls being left all over the fairway. This is turning a quick 30 minute job into quite a long task, as we have to pick up all the balls before mowing. We will also endeavour to do our bit by cutting the rough in that area more often to make it easier to find balls which may miss the fairway. Thank you to all that answered our last call of making sure the access gate to the fairway is shut after use.

Many thanks and happy golfing,

Jai Rochfort



Recent cool weather has slowed turf growth, a few weeks back we were mowing fairways twice a week, now we are back to a single cut which is unusual at this time of year.

We have installed irrigation to 70% of the 4 fairway, next week we plan to complete it. Weather permitting we will shorten the hole on Monday.

Our golf course masterplan shows the bunker we are working on the 5 as deleted. Given that, it has been suggested that we fill it in and blend it into the surroundings.

Mark Stanley has been appointed Golf Course Superintendent at a major Soma Bay golf resort on the Red Sea in Egypt. For the past 18 months Mark has done a great job and been a big asset with the installation of our new irrigation system. We wish him all the best in his new position.

Due to Immigration requirements, our irrigation casual Josh Wooley will also leave as he is required to do farm work in order to further his stay in Australia. 

Mark Gahan


Our greens continue to improve providing improved speed and ball roll. As reported we have patched the front of the 3rd green.

This week we completed irrigation to the 7th hole and installed half of the 4th fairway. Next week we plan to complete the 4th which then completes two of our three Par 5’s.

A temporary cart path has been roughed in to the right of the 15th green. (we plan to lay asphalt in the near future)

Mark Gahan


The 8th green has been mowed further out at the rear and that is why it has browned off and should soon recover.

We have struggled with high winds trashing the course with leaf and bark debris. A lot of time is required to clean up; then it’s a mess again the next morning.

We have completed irrigation to the 18th fairway. Next week we plan to install the tee end of the 4th fairway weather permitting, the hole will be shortened on Monday, Thursday and Friday.

The new artificial practice mat has been installed, give it a try it performs much like real turf without the divots.

The top greenside bunker on the 5th is being remodeled to prevent the path above it being undermined.

Our new dam is proving a huge success. We have eliminated almost any issue with Unity Water (shutting off the supply due to their maintenance), reduced our overnight watering time by 4 hours, we can pump primarily in off peak electricity times, greatly reduced maintenance costs to the pumps which previously suffered from regular air locks causing damage and eliminated sprinkler blockages due to small plastic items in the recycled water.

Mark Gahan

Course Superintendent


Our greens continue to improve since renovations early this month. Greens have been a little slow due to additional fertilizers applied to aid recovery, pace should improve soon.
We have a few thin areas of turf on greens 3 and 5, to which we have applied additional fertilizer. If necessary, we plan to patch these areas with turf from our nursery.
Irrigation focused on connecting the back practice range to the new mainline and running cable to operate the existing fairway sprinklers automatically.
Next week we plan to install part of the 4th fairway. We will close the 4th on Monday (only) and split the 16th into two holes.
Mark Gahan

The AGCSA arranged a day at Byron Bay golf club on Thursday. It consisted of a lecture from a leading Sydney Course Superintendent then a walk around the course with Sean the local Superintendent. 
This proved a most valuable experience as we saw both exceptional turf and quality presentation, during which Sean happily answered all questions regarding his management techniques.  
Irrigation has been installed to both the 5th and 7th tees, sprinklers still require fitting on the 7th tee.
Turf has been laid on the new mounds near the 15th green.

Mark Stanley who has been a major help with installation of our irrigation has been offered a position as Superintendent of a new golf course development in Egypt. He flies there tonight, we wish him the best of luck with his interview.

Mark Gahan


During the week we received around 70mm of rain which has helped greens recover after recent renovations.

However, the rain didn’t help us with irrigation work at the 4th green. Despite constant showers we  completed the green and approach- next week we aim to install the 5th tee (old 5th).

Turf is also planned for the new mounds near the 15th green.


Our annual renovation of greens has been completed.  While the greens are putting okay, we expect them to take a week, or more to fully recover.  Tees are also being scarified.
A major irrigation milestone has also occurred, the 150mm ring main is completed.  The pipe started near the dam and round to the rear of the 3rd green where it returns via the 16th, to re-join itself near the 9th green.  In all, just over 3 kilometres of pipe was used.
I wish to thank all my course staff and contractors for the great job in undertaking and completing irrigation work, to date, as well as their effort in maintaining the course through a severe winter drought.
Our aim is to complete as much irrigation work as possible before December and hopefully complete fairways, 17, 8, 4 greens, 4, 6, 17 and tees 5, 7, 17 and 18.
Some preliminary shaping of new mounds near 15th green will form part of a cart path to the 16th tee.
Thank you to Shane Krueger who helped us concrete the new pad for the artificial practice mat.  The concrete will need to cure before the mat is glued down.

Next week the course is closed on Monday and Tuesday for greens renovation. This year we are mini tyning with 8mm tynes as we did last year. We expect the greens to take a week or so to recover. 

The process is: once cores are cleared we apply gypsum and trace elements, top dress with sand, brush it into the core holes and finally we apply fertilizer.

A retired greenkeeper member has suggested we should ‘double dip’ when we core or core deeper on problem greens.

This year we are deep aerating (after coring) with an aeration machine that blasts air at 150mm and 300mm to break up compaction at a depth beyond normal aeration techniques.

This machine shakes the entire green profile shattering compacted areas thus improving air movement and pore space to stimulate root development and aid beneficial soil microbes break down deep organic matter. 

Current warm growing conditions have benefited the course especially on holes where our new irrigation is installed.
Irrigation mainline has progressed further down the 15th. We also installed the 100mm main to service areas around the half-way house. 
The new lawn has been cut down to fairway height, it will take a few weeks for the turf to adjust to the lower mowing height.
I have been asked to advise players on Monday 2nd of October, as a trial, routing of two holes will change. 
After playing the 4th proceed to the 12th tee (becomes the 5th) and after playing the 11th proceed to the 5th tee (becomes the 12th) All other holes remain the same and are played in the same order.
The reason is our current 5th and 6th holes are slow holes due to right hand sliced shots, by separating these holes it should speed up play.


Sand is being placed in needy bunkers, 50mm of sand was added to the base of the left green approach bunker on the 10th. More bunkers will have sand added next week.

We are planning to raise the lip height and reduce the size of the 4th green approach bunker. Raising the height should make it visible from most areas in the fairway and improve understanding of the green/bunker location. Making it smaller will reduce maintenance especially after heavy rain.

Irrigation mainline has progressed to the 15th from where it continues thru to the 9th which then completes the 150mm ring main.

Soil overburden from the pipeline has been placed right of the 15th green. We plan to build small mounds and perhaps create a cart path similar to the left side of the 7th green.


Our Management Committee has approved the installation of artificial turf in front of the practice nets to provide a year round tee surface to the chipping green. As reported this tee is too small for the use it gets, the new matting is designed to provide a similar feel to real turf, minus any divots.

We have begun laying the 150mm cross connecting main line pipe from the 11th down to 16th. This pipe will supply holes 6, 12, and tees / greens near the half-way house, hopefully this connection will be completed next week.

For safety reasons, golf cart users are requested not to drive their golf carts on the golf course after dark. There is a perfectly good path along the course boundary which provides safe access ‘especially after dark’. Members living along the 10th are excluded ‘past the 9th tee’ as no path is provided, but please drive with due caution.

The back driving range gate is still left open on occasion. Please lock the gate after practice or advise other golfers to lock it after practice.


This Sunday is our final Pennant match against Pacific GC, the course will be presented as for previous matches. 

As reported, this week we solid spiked all greens with 5mm tynes to a depth of 125mm, we then followed up by applying a wetting agent to aid irrigation water penetrate the green profile.

We also installed the 16th green irrigation. This proved a much more difficult task than planned; as instead of soft sand as we expected, about 150mm down the entire base is rock hard clay fill which slowed progress. Thank you for your patience as the temporary green was in play for the entire week.

Tree work to remove the broken branch hanging in the large blue gum near the 9th green and the top branches of a dead gum tree on the left of 14th  has been completed.

This week we experienced huge tides in the bay, sea water came up well into the roughs on 16th and 17th which will damage our turf.

Our new electric Jacobsen greens mower is proving itself, as we now cut all 18 greens without running out of battery. We have solar panels at our shed so technically it could cost nothing to run.


Next week we plan to solid spike all greens with 5mm tynes, we do this to reduce compaction and encourage root growth. After rolling there should be little impact to green surfaces.

We fertilized all fairways and tees with Nitrogen and Iron to improve colour and encourage growth.

Due to the show day holiday and country week golf there was no further installation of irrigation.

Next week we plan to install the 16th green so the temporary will be in play on Monday and early Tuesday. We aim to have the green in play for the Ladies competition; however some completion work may still be going on at the rear of the green.

It seems our tree man and I have different calendars, tree work is booked for next Thursday.

A member has suggested installing a section of artificial turf on our worn practice tee. As this concept has merit we are obtaining quotes for the Board to consider.

Mark Gahan

Course Superintendent


Greens have been fertilized with a low Nitrogen high Potassium fertilizer to provide winter colour and boost turf health.

Early this week I was invited to a Rainbird irrigation seminar. We learnt about advanced irrigation software, programming, efficient installation of sprinklers and installation of communication cable etc.  It was an excellent learning experience.

We have again experienced difficulties with wet weather while installing irrigation around the 2nd green. Hopefully Monday will be a dry day and we can complete the project.

As we have re-seeded the temporary green on the 16th with Poa trivialis (as we did last year), to protect the new seed it may be necessary to reduce the 2nd to a short pitch on Monday so we can continue work in front of the green.

We have received suggestions from members re placement of rakes. We have passed them on to the match committee. As the old ‘blue T rake location’ is fading we will remove signage on all rakes to reduce confusion.

Mark Gahan

Course Superintendent


Due to cooler weather, we have raised the height cut of mowers to protect turf during winter.  Greens are now being mowed at 4mm, tees at 10mm and fairways at 15mm.  (they were 3mm, 8mm, 13mm)

Rakes:  as mentioned in the last report, are now to be placed in bunkers, toward the center with the handle facing outwards.

Irrigation has been completed to the 18th green.  Our next project is the 2nd green, therefore on Monday 8.5.17 and after the Ladies competition on Tuesday 9.5.17 the 2nd hole will be out of play, we will use the temporary holes 16 A and B.

We have turfed the edges of the 5th path, please keep carts off the new turf until it establishes.

We have a firebug lighting fires around our driving range, if seen please report them to police.

Tree work has been completed to remove the leaning tree on 14 and the high dead branch on the 15th dogleg.

Last Friday evening, tree loppers working near our pump shed brought down our power line to our pumps.  Thankfully they effected complicated repairs the next day.

Congratulations to staff member Jordan Bullimore who is now our apprentice.  Jordan has worked as a casual for the past 12 months or so.

Mark Gahan

Course Superintendent  


Congratulations to all winners and runners up in the championship final.  I watched Doug and Jarrod's birdie blitz of fantastic golf, as good or better than watching seasoned professionals play.  We now know where fairway bunkers could be placed to challenge long hitters.
Our greens are continuing to improve and are rolling well.
Rakes:  after discussion with match committee members, it was decided that rakes can now be placed back in bunkers after use.  In the professional's events, organizers insist on placing rakes outside the bunker.  However, as controversy re rakes has continued, we now ask that rakes be placed toward the centre of the bunker with the handle facing outwards.  It will also speed up mowing operations around bunkers.
We have been asked to mow fairways a little wider; they have been cut out to the fringe line.
Irrigation has been installed to the 18th geen; it will be completed next week.  Our next project is to install the 2nd green.
Contractors have completed the asphalt path on the 5th; turf work is now planned for next week.
We have a firebug lighting fires around our driving range.  If seen please report them to the police.
Tree work is planned for next Thursday to remove the leaning tree on 14 and the high dead branch on the 15th dogleg.


We have been asked to set the course for the club championship final to challenge our best players. Greens will be cut and rolled and holes cut in championship locations. Good luck to all our finalists.

Our greens are continuing to improve from recent fungal disease issues. Despite extensive research into the disease, all efforts have provided only limited protection to the turf.

However, a new fungicide which we trialed on the 14th green provided excellent turf protection. It was registered this week and will soon be available.

Irrigation has been installed to the 10th tee, this completes the hole from tee to green.

Contractors have completed stage one of asphalt work on the 5th path. Next Monday it is being sealed and surrounding turf work will follow later in the week.

The aerator in the new dam has been repaired and is back in action.


Except for a couple of large tree stumps clean-up work after last week’s storms is nearly complete.

I am pleased to report disease/nematode damaged areas on greens are improving and new roots are developing.

To further encourage root development greens were spiked with 8mm tynes and rolled, there is no disruption to green surfaces and ball roll has improved.

Irrigation work was completed to the 3rd tee, only limited progress appears possible during April due to Easter and club championships.

We have booked asphalt work on the 5th path for next Monday and sealing on Thursday 13th. The old deco path material has been carted to the 9th greenside path.  Work is planned to stop while the Ladies semi final players play through.

The aerator on the new dam has a minor mechanical fault and is out of action for a few days, (the propeller nut unscrewed somehow) repairs are covered by warranty.

Mark Gahan


The remnants of cyclone Debbie lashed the golf course with 125mm of rain and high winds. We spent all of Friday cleaning up debris that covered every hole from green to tee. All staff did a great clean up job let by Peter and Jai on the chainsaws.

We have lost 5 large trees which are still to be cleared, they are GUR for the weekend. One positive for some is the large branch on the 15th dogleg came down!

All bunkers have been trashed; time did not permit to effect repairs. They are full of debris and are water damaged. I believe a local rule will apply this weekend.

Golf carts will be permitted this weekend providing we have no further heavy rain, BUT all signage must be observed and followed.

Mark Gahan


Wet humid weather has promoted growth, our greens remain on the slow side.

Regular heavy rain during the past week has caused our usual wet areas to appear. Please observe and follow Cart signs to protect these areas.

We continue to have issues with root disease on a few greens, we had previously applied monthly applications of preventive fungicides to protect against disease but it appears there is some disease resistance to the fungicide.

We attempted installing irrigation to the 3rd tees but rain has delayed progress.

We have booked asphalt work for the 5th path for preparation on Mon 10th of April and sealing on Thursday 13th. Work is planned to stop while the Ladies semi final players play through. 

Mark Gahan


We continue to struggle with hot humid weather. Our greens have suffered slight fungal and insect damage which has been treated.

Old scars of diseased turf on the 3rd and 11th greens have been patched and are marked as GUR.
Staff member Mark Stanley raised concerns re the root health of our greens after changing holes. We sent samples away which indicated a moderately high count of dagger and spiral nematodes.

Nematodes are only visible under a microscope and are usually always present in a healthy soil environment. They suck plant nutrients from roots, symptoms usually only arise when plants are under stress; given current high soil temperatures and turf roots are surrounded by warm salty water (salts from irrigation water) therefore under stress.

We have treated all greens with a registered nematicide and will send further samples away for inspection. An additional soil test was also conducted the results were generally good.

Early this morning the old fibro 150mm irrigation main burst in front of the 6th green. We did not irrigate last night but lost at least 1 MG/L of water out of our dam flooding the 16th fairway.

Jason was in charge of installing irrigation to the top clubhouse garden then selecting and planting it out, he did a great job.

A big thankyou to Jai and the staff for doing a great job while I was on holidays.

Mark Gahan
Course Superintendent


Last week I was crying out for some rain… and didn’t get it. 60ml fell in a hurry on Saturday night, leaving the course a wash for Sunday and a big clean-up for staff on the Monday. When the rain comes in hard and fast like it did, it affects our bunkers and deco paths the most. It washes all the sand off the bunker face in to the base of the bunkers, this needs to be pushed/shovelled back up and broomed around to reform the bunker face. As a result, the bunker faces will be a bit soft and may cause balls to “plug” a bit more than usual until they settle. We have also been repairing deco paths and this will continue next week. That aside, the benefits far outweigh the extra work this rain event created. All of our lakes are now on the full side, and we have seen an influx of growth across the golf course. The reason you get such a flurry of growth and a nice ‘green up’ after rain, is it will flush out the salts and acids that have built up in the soil over time. Rain also ‘unlocks’ nutrients that has been locked up in the soil profile making it more available to plant.

Maintenance wise it’s been all about mowing this week with all areas getting cut and some areas including rough getting hit twice. We have also sorted a program repairing drainage pits around the golf course. This is to improve drainage as some pits had been crushed from traffic and were not doing their job. And others are being repaired for safety reasons as the drain covers/lids are out dated and or a safety hazard.

This week we have also ‘solid tined’ all of the greens. This procedure is like coring but instead of a hollow tine that pulls out a core, we use a solid time that just punches holes throughout the green. It’s extremely important as it relives compaction caused by machinery and general foot traffic. It also helps airflow and allows water and any products we put out easier access to rootzone. It causes minimal disruption to the playing surface and after a roll you may not even be able to tell it has been completed. We managed to finish this task with no effect on competition golf and minimal effect on social golfers.

Lastly, Mark is back from annual leave mid next week, so I would like to thank all of our staff for their efforts while he has been away, the club for giving me this opportunity and the members for their support over the last three weeks. I hope I have given you an insight on why and how we do some of the things we do out on the course.

Until next time…

Jai Rochfort


Rain……. What rain??? With 100ml predicted over the last week, it would have been nice to see some of it. But it was not to be, with the golf course only receiving 4.5ml. As a result of us backing off our watering program expecting this rain event, you may notice a few dry areas around, particularly in our fairways. It would be

nice to see the 20ml predicted over the weekend to help out the areas on course without irrigation and top up our lakes.
We completed the first stage of our new garden project in front of the clubhouse deck with plants going in on Monday and mulch on Tuesday. Next we plan on adding more soil to the garden on the other side of the footpath that leads you down to the buggy shed underneath the pro shop. This will then be mulched and the existing vine will be encouraged to fill this area.
The new lawn out the front of the clubhouse has had its first mow at 25mm. Our plan is to bring it down in height as it continues to settle and grow in.

Irrigation work this week has seen us install a new line to our large putting green. Next week we start on a ring around the 18th green and installation of new sprinklers in this area also.

Finally, There was a report of a red bellied black snake hanging around the 10th hole. The best thing to do if you come across any snake on the golf course is to stay well clear of it. The majority of people bitten are either trying to catch,kill or move the snake on in someway. If you have a snake at home call a professional snake catcher to come and remove it.

Jai Rochfort



The removal of thatch continued this week and it would seem like we are getting the root of the problem. This week saw us pulling out more thatch than previous weeks as we have broken through a sand layer that had been sitting between the greens surface and the thatch layer. This practice will continue weekly until the weather cools down, slowing the plants growth which will minimize its thatch output. 

We have created a new entry point for our bunker rake to get in and out of the 12th bunker. Previously we had been entering this bunker from the fairway as it was the only place safe to do so. This was causing damage to a section of the fairway. The damaged area has now been removed and re-turfed. We will now be entering from the 6th tee side of the bunker, keeping any damage that might happen in the future away from a short cut playing surface. The new section of turf is G.U.R as marked and we ask if members/ guests could please avoid this area until turf is established.

The new small mound in front of the right green side bunker in the first has been turfed and is G.U.R, as is all the new turf surrounding this area. 

Irrigation work has continued this week seeing the completion of north end of the practice range and practice green. We should start seeing improvement in grass coverage in this area due to bigger sprinklers with better coverage. 
Next week we will be putting a new line in behind the 18th green.

Lastly, I would like to thank all our members and guests for your ongoing understanding as we continue our works bettering the golf course we all love so much..!

Jai Rochfort


As reported our greens are starting to ‘thatch up’ due to summer growing conditions. We really have to maintain our dethatching program until the weather starts to cool off, some greens may not look pretty but they still putt reasonably well.

We have laid ‘Nullarbor Couch’ for the new lawn area at the clubhouse, please keep off it for the next 2-3 weeks. The garden is planned to plant next week with Dietes grandiflora as a mass planting.

Irrigation was also installed to the north end of the practice fairway. Next week we plan to install the chipping green and the rest of the practice area.

We have created a new path to the 2nd tee, our concept is when playing the 1st simply drive up to the 2nd tee and walk over to the green to putt out. (same as the 3rd)

It may take a while for all to grasp this concept but it should help speed up play and reduce wear nearer the green. Please observe new signage.

I am on holidays for the next 3 weeks , Jai is in charge of our weekly reports.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Greens are starting to ‘thatch up’ due to summer growing conditions. We are verti cutting weekly to maintain smooth ball roll and green speed. Some greens may not look pretty but they still putt reasonably well given the growth we are experiencing.

We have installed irrigation and roughly shaped the new lawn area at the clubhouse, turf is planned for next week.

Irrigation was also installed to the 2nd tee. The putting green and 1st tee have been wired into our new irrigation system.

Dead trees behind the 14th and beside the 10th tee have been removed, along with the rotten mango tree behind the 9th tee. These trees were all safety concerns.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


A few greens have minor scalp marks caused by the mower. When we mow into the grain, the mower occasionally grabs in more grainy areas, we will review mowing practices.

Our 11th green dried out due to a malfunction of the satellite controlling it. Instead of watering for 20 minutes per sprinkler it only applied 1-2 minutes, the faulty relay has been replaced. 

The gardens at the clubhouse have been removed. Next week we plan to install irrigation and shape the lawn area.

As suitable machinery was on site we shaped the new cart path to the 2nd tee. Our plan is to park carts next to the tee and then walk across to the green. This should reduce carts stopping in front of the green which slows play.

We have completed the irrigation main to the 2nd green. It proved to be more time consuming than anticipated due to drainage pipes that we had to dig under and the ground was rock hard.

We have received a quote to asphalt the 5th path which is being considered. 

Thank you to the member who donated a water cooler for our workshop, it is most welcome and well used by thirsty ground staff.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Hot dry weather over the past couple of weeks is starting to take its toll. Temporary dry spots on greens have been treated with wetting agent and additional watering.

As reported brown patches on greens 7,11,12 is dead bent grass. We had hoped our 328 turf would rapidly grow over, however progress is slow and we may have to patch these areas using turf from our nursery.

We have completed the irrigation on the 1st hole. Next week we plan to install a new 100mm main to service the 2nd and the practice range. We may shorten the hole to a 100m par 3 during installation if necessary.

Completion work on the 5th path is also planned.

Thank you to the volunteers who have carefully removed the old irrigation sprinklers in the 9th and 10th fairways.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Brown patches on greens 7,11 and 12 are areas we sowed bent grass last Autumn. Bent grass performs poorly in hot humid conditions and why golf courses in Brisbane are a variety of ‘Bermuda’ as the Americans call it.

While these areas look unsightly they are putting well, our aim is to encourage the Bermuda 328 to grow over in the next month or so. (In Australia it’s known as Tifgreen 328)

We reached a goal with our irrigation during the week, we now have a new mainline that runs from the dam to the 18th green. 

Given suitable weather, we will install the tee end of the 1st hole next week. We will shorten the 1st hole on Monday and continue work after the ladies’ competition hits off on Tuesday as we did last week.

We have been asked to improve the clubhouse gardens. It has been decided to remove all plants, install irrigation and turf the lower garden area.  The top garden (below the deck) will be mass planted with a single variety of native plants or grasses. 

The rock gardens (above the underground buggy area) will become creeping honey suckle, it has covered most of the north side and will be low maintenance once established. Work is planned to begin the week after next. 

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan


Our greens are putting truly but perhaps are a little slower than we would like. It is difficult to maintain speedy 328 greens given current weather conditions as it grows vigorously in hot humid conditions, however we continue to lightly dethatch and sand dust greens to tighten the turf thus improve ball roll.

We are currently spot spraying the weed ‘Crows foot’ in various areas around the course.

As reported we started work to improve the path from the 5th tee down the hill. Next week we aim to turf the mounds and prepare it for the deco.

Also, next week our plan is to install the 100mm pvc mainline pipe to service the start of the 1st, 18th green, putting greens and part of the 18th fairway. Given suitable weather we will shorten the 1st hole on Monday and continue work after the ladies’ competition hits off on Tuesday.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


We have started work to improve the path from the 5th tee down the hill. The intention is to create small mounds to divert water away from the path and top it with Deco. Ultimately it will probably need to be sealed with asphalt.

We are looking to refurbish the gardens in front of the clubhouse. The current concept is to retain the small high garden and remove much of the lower garden vegetation and convert the area to turf which will reduce maintenance and improve visuals.

Blue lines; we have noticed a definite increase of cart operators ignoring our blue line. Unfortunately, many are not public players but members, to help us improve your golf course please make a habit of following directional signs and observe our blue line policy.

A large wetland bird (Dart) was noticed near the 2nd pond with twine around its beak, it couldn’t open its beak at all. Our Crocodile Dundee Jai, tried to catch it but it flew off. A few hours later the boys were carting soil near the new dam and spotted the bird. This time Jai caught it, what was amazing was that it let Jai get close enough to catch it as if it was asking him for help.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Except for a few dry spots on some greens the course is playing well and has been well used by members and visitors during the holiday break. Dry spots have been treated with a wetting agent and a good hand water.

Jai Rochfort and the boys did a great job presenting the course last week, especially as they were short staffed and had storm damage to clean up on the Monday (19th).

Chris Walk had the job of wading out to the aerator on the 2nd hole pond which was clogged with weed. However after effecting repairs, Chris lost his trousers amongst the weed while returning to the bank, should anyone find them! Well now you know the story.

Happy Golfing in 2017

Mark Gahan


Peter James is on annual leave and of course leaks have occurred in the old irrigation system. Fortunately, they were relatively minor but still time consuming to repair.

Our new drive range is now being cut at fairway height; it is shaping up very well. Target greens will be cut in once the turf has matured fully.

A blue colorant has been added into our dam water, this is to reduce sunlight and aid algae control.

The clutch on our John Deere spray rig failed last week. Steve our mechanic did a great job to source parts and effect repairs to get this important piece of equipment back to work.

We have employed a temporary casual (Peter Campbell) to top up irrigation trenches, this is a time consuming but important task. Peter may also help with our new pipeline next year.

I am away on annual leave for a week. Jai Rochfort will be acting Superintendent, he has been given a long list of jobs for the week.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Last Saturday evening another 40mm of heavy rain fell, associated extreme winds trashed the course with tree debris. A large Mango tree on the 9th tee blew down and it has taken much of the week to clear the mess.

Unity Water has been unable to supply recycled water for much of the past two weeks, due to recent storm rains.

Our dam maintained water supply for irrigation and allowed testing of our new irrigation. We also repaired leaks in the old system.

The algae in the dam has been controlled using a copper based algaecide, we are currently introducing beneficial bacteria that consume the nutrients which algae feeds on.

We have contacted golf clubs that have recycled effluent dams (including Hervey Bay GC) they have endorsed the above program when combined with good aeration. Should the algae problem persist additional bottom of the dam aeration will be considered.

Sand (GS 750) has been placed in the back section of the 17th bunker as a trial, any comments are welcome.

Mark Gahan

Course Superintendent


Last Saturday morning over 140mm of rain fell in a few hours causing damage to bunkers and paths, carts were not permitted as many fairways were under water. Even careful operation of carts would have caused unnecessary damage to turf and the course.

We are pleased to report, except for tidy up and sprinkler adjustments; stage 1 of our new irrigation is completed. Many areas that had limited or no irrigation are now fully irrigated.

Our new 150mm main was laid from the dam to the rear of the 3rd green and new lateral pipework supplies green, tee and fairway sprinklers. Holes 1,3,8,9,10 as well as the 11th tee and 7th green are starting to show the benefits of even irrigation.

The next stage is to install a 100mm main line to the start of the 1st fairway, putting greens and top half of the 18th, and then extend pipework to the second green, 3rd tees and practice area.

We may shorten the 1st and the 2nd for a day or so but the course is planned to play as normal for at least a few weeks.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan



As reported dead patches on a couple of greens is where we sprayed to remove the bent grass. This worked a little too well and there was less 328 growing under and through the bent than expected.

We plan to start patching the worst of these areas and where possible fertilize and let the 328 re-establish in the marginal areas. Generally, ball roll has not been affected.

Green algae in our new dam has been treated and controlled with a copper based turf friendly algaecide.

During the week, we had an irrigation/dam expert visit for advice. He was very happy with our dam set up- its deep, has good aeration and is plastic lined, which is the basis of algae free water storage.

He also suggested supplementary aeration to stir the bottom of the dam to prevent layers forming in the water column, adding a colourant to reduce sunlight into the water, adding algae destroying microbes and perhaps suitable algae eating fish. He will report further.

The 1st green is our next irrigation project. Weather permitting the 1st hole will be closed on Tuesday till late Thursday this week. The 16th will again be split into two holes, a special scorecard applies for competition play.

We have some volunteer members available to dig up and carefully returf the old irrigation sprinklers in fairway 10 next Tuesday. If you can assist, please contact Greens Director Shane Krueger.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Our greens continue to improve and are nearly back to normal putting speed. Next week we plan to give them a light dethatch prior to sand dusting, this program is continued weekly through the growing season.

Green algae in our new dam has been treated with a copper based turf friendly algaecide. We are also considering alternate treatments.

The 7th green is our next irrigation project. Weather permitting the 7th hole will be closed for most of next week. The 16th will again be split into two holes, a special scorecard applies for competition play.

Rainbird have inspected our irrigation project and helped solve a few software issues. They were very happy with our installation work.

If any volunteer members are available to dig up and carefully returf our old irrigation sprinklers in fairways 3,8,9,10 it would be appreciated. If so Greens Director Shane Krueger is the person to contact.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Our greens continue to improve after renovations. However, we noticed a little disease starting in a few greens which we treated with a fungicide.

Fairways and tees have also been fertilized.

We have installed irrigation in the 11th tee and next week we plan to install the 8th green, if so the 8th hole will be closed from Tuesday morning till Friday and the temporary holes on 16th brought onto play. We will advise Kerry and the Pro Shop on Monday.

New bunker sand has been placed in the left green side bunker on the 10th as a trial, we are interested in comments as to its’ playability.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Greens renovation went to plan, as advised we used mini tynes this year so we can expect a speedy recovery of turf. Greens will be a little slower for a week or two as they were well fertilized to promote growth.

Brown areas on a few greens, is where we sprayed the ‘bent grass’ to encourage our 328 couch turf to grow back into those areas, this may take a month or more.

We have installed irrigation in the 10th green and approaches taking advantage of last weeks’ course closure. Next week we plan to install the 8th green. To do this we will need to close the 8th hole for much of the week and play the 16th as a par 4 and a par 3 as previously played. We will advise the Pro Shop in advance.

Our new driving range is getting increased use. Due to mowing and maintenance requirements, we will need to close it to practice for an hour or so during the week. We will discuss this with the match committee and advertise closure times.

Thank you for the many positive emails we received from members last week. It seems bunkers and maintenance of, is a very controversial subject.

One email came from a member who recently played Royal Melbourne, he said their bunkers were great, but we have much better fairways!

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan



Next week the course is closed on Monday and Tuesday for greens renovations. As usual the greens will be a bit bumpy and sandy for a few days.

We have installed irrigation in the 8th and the 9th tee and plan to install the 10th green next Monday taking advantage of the course closure.

As members should realize our current major work priority is to install the irrigation system, however we received an email slamming the condition of our bunkers.

The basis of the email appears to be wet compacted sand which occurred after recent heavy rain events and the various sand types in many bunkers. As previously explained heavy rain washes silt from bunker faces contaminating the sand and slows drainage, once they dry out we can fluff them up and they play ok.

We have redesigned the right side bunkers on the 2nd green for this very reason and heard very few complaints since. We have big plans to enhance course visuals by remodeling and improving bunkers but the irrigation is our focus at present, also in the opinion of many members our bunkers play well for the majority of occasions.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Next week we plan to heavily scarify the collar cut surrounding greens which is about 2 meters wide. By cutting the turf shorter, down to 10mm, we hope to slow the encroachment of common green couch into our greens.

We have installed fairway irrigation in the 8th fairway which now operates through our irrigation computer. Next week being a short week we plan to install the 8th and perhaps the 9th tee.

We have had feedback re the cart path at the 1st green. This area is ugly and worn, we are considering a new path and turning circle at the rear of the 2nd social tee.

Carts will park there then U turn back (via the turning circle) onto the existing concrete buggy path. This concept will keep the concrete path in use, alternative suggestions could make the path irrelevant.

There is a swooping Butcher bird near the practice bunker, so please be aware.

We received a very nice letter from the family of tireless member Dave Ridgway, a tree in his honor has been planted near the half-way house.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Greens are being renovating on the 10th and 11th of October. This year we are using mini tynes which we hope will not disturb the surface as much as past renovations.

There are a few bare areas on green edges caused by mower/roller wear during winter, these should recover quickly after renovation.

We have installed fairway irrigation in 75% of the 8th fairway which we aim to complete next week. The 8th and 10th greens are next, we will close the hole when installing green irrigation and swing our temporary holes on 16 into play.

All fairways were fertilized last week, this combined with recent rain and warmer temperatures is improving fairway definition. 

Our new back driving range is taking shape; recent rain has caused minor damage, however it is open for practice.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


As reported, we sand dusted our greens during the week. This program is planned to continue through until after summer.

We have a few dry spots on greens which have been treated with a wetting agent.

We have installed pipe and sprinklers down the 9th fairway, next week we plan to complete this fairway. We will also complete wire connections to fully automate the 9th and 10th fairways. The 8th fairway, then the 8th and  10th greens and 9th and 11th tees are next.

Rainbird Australia, at our request, sent a senior consultant to inspect our irrigation work to date.  He expressed he was very happy with the quality of our installation.

Sealing work on the new cart path from the 7th green to 8th tee has been completed.

Peter James has come from well back mid-year, to win our ground staff footy tipping for 2016. Chris Walk was a close second and Jai a distant 3rd.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


This week we plan to recommence our weekly light sand dusting of greens, dusting is not done in winter. We apply a paper thin film of sand and rub it into the surface when dry, disruption to play is minimal. Monday before/after veterans is usually a good time to dust.

Dusting improves surface firmness and helps maintain smooth ball roll, it also aids thatch control as the sand creates pore (air) space which stimulates soil microbes which break down thatch as it naturally accumulates. 

We have installed pipe and sprinklers down the r/h tee end of the 9th fairway, this week we plan to complete the l/h side.

Due to the Ladies Foursome championship we postponed sealing work on the new cart path from the 7th green to 8th tee. The 5th path was previously sealed as a trial, the company plan to reseal it at no cost to continue trial work. Both paths will be closed to carts for a few days to allow time to cure.

We have been trained in the safe use of chainsaws and felling small trees (less than 10m high) as part of the Landscape course that four of us are undertaking.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Greens have been fertilized to give them a boost as we head into spring. They may putt slightly slower for a week or so. 

Except for small tidy up jobs, irrigation work for the 10th fairway has been completed. Next week we plan to commence work on the 9th fairway - the hole will be shortened as was the 10th during work.

The new cart path from the 7th green to 8th tee is planned to be sealed next week (same sealer as the 5th path) - it will be closed to carts for a few days to allow it to cure.

We have been short staffed lately -Dan is away at trade school for 2 weeks and Jason has broken his wrist and is on sick leave. The timing is not good especially as a lot of time is being spent on irrigation work.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan



Turf and Deco work on the new 7th path is completed- we are now considering sealing it with the same bonding material that has proved successful on the 5th path.

As reported we have started installing sprinklers in the 10th fairway. The 9 sprinklers installed have been tested and work very well. Next week is a short work week – also Country Week golf is played on Monday and Tuesday so trenching work will have to be postponed till the following week.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan



As reported we have complete stage 1 of the new 150mm pipeline to the rear of the 3rd green. The pipe was flushed on Monday and has since been pressurized with no leaks.

The aerator for the dam has been installed and is running from 7.00 am to 5.00pm daily.

A second aerator in the 2nd pond is installed- we are waiting on our electrician to check the wiring.

Turf and Deco work on the new 7th path is nearing completion.

On Monday we plan to commence installation of sprinklers in the 10th fairway. Our aim is to fully complete a section per day to maintain good playing conditions- however, markers will be placed forward when we are working due to safety concerns.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan



Warm winter conditions have ‘greened up’ our course including greens, which is somewhat of a surprise given its mid-winter.

Areas around greens and fairways where Kikuyu grass was spot sprayed are now obvious and yellowing.

We have completed stage 1 of the new 150mm pipeline to the rear of the 3rd green. All involved have done a great job to date. As reported we will test pipework next week.

The aerator for the dam has been installed. A switchboard will be installed in the pump shed next week to complete the project. A second aerator in the 2nd pond will also be up and running next week.

We have cut a new path from the left side of the 7th green to the 8th tee and created new mounds to visually enhance this worn and pitted area of turf. Turf and Deco is also planned for next week.

Staff member Jason and volunteer John Chapman plan to remove as much dead Bougainvillea tangled in trees near the 14th tee when possible next week. 

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


As reported we have sprayed areas of ‘Bent Grass’ in a few greens and Kikuyu in fairways 7 and 12 and green surrounds. Weeds will start to discolour and gradually decline.

Work on our new 150mm pvc mainline has progressed to near the 1st green.  This section was tricky as we had to dig under the concrete drain crossing the 3rd and also change the angle. To complicate matters we struck groundwater, this was overcome with pumping and fast work.

We plan to complete stage 1 of the pipeline at the rear of the 3rd green in a week or two, as at that point it can be pressurized with water. After testing - installing sprinklers in holes 9,10,8,7,3,11 will commence.

The aerator for the dam has arrived and will be installed very soon. The second aerator in the 2nd pond is also ready to install.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Due to the cool weather and minimal growth we are rolling greens more often than mowing, rolling improves ball roll and green speed.

Our trainee Pro Am last Monday was a success. In my absence Jai and Laura were in charge of course presentation and setup, by all reports they both did a great job.

We plan to spray areas of ‘Bent Grass’ in a few greens and patches of invasive Kikuyu in fairways 7 and 12 and green surrounds next week.

Work on our new 150mm pvc mainline has progressed to the 8th tee. We need to dig the next section deeply to trench under the concrete drain crossing the 3rd.

The old 8th tee (where carts park) will go and be reshaped. There is a live pipe that must remain temporarily as this will influence the final shape.

The temporary green on 16 is being cut at 4 mm and will soon be ready when required. The plan is to split the 16th into two holes when our new irrigation is being installed around greens and approaches.

Our new practice nets, artificial turf and mats have been installed. Many thanks to Bill Williams for his assistance. One of the low drain grates on the 8th greenside path has been raised and the other is planned for next week.

The aerator for the dam will be installed very soon. A second aerator for the 2nd pond is currently being set up and installed once electrical issues are solved.

All staff are currently being trained in the safe use of chainsaws as a OH&S requirement.

Thank you to member John Chapman who has volunteered his gardening skills to help us maintain the ‘Faithfull Gardens’ by the 13th green.

I wish to thank the Committee and Members for allowing me to attend the annual AGCSA turf conference in Melbourne. It was a great learning experience. I will provide a report in a few days.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


I would like to congratulate all the finalists of the club championships. I watched the last 16 holes of the men’s final and witnessed amazing match play golf, especially so, as many greens were set up with difficult pin positions.

Work on our new 150mm pvc mainline has progressed to adjacent the 11th tee. We have had some hold ups repairing previously undiscovered pipes and the dig between large trees was slow. We plan to progress down the 8th fairway next week.

Our new practice nets and mats have arrived. We will also glue artificial turf to the concrete to improve cosmetic appeal.

A second aerator for the 2nd pond has arrived and will be installed during the week once electrical issues are solved. The larger aerator for the dam is still a few weeks away due to delays.

The club has purchased a new grinding machine to sharpen the cutting blades on our cylinder mowers. Previously we sent them away for sharpening which cost $500-$750 per mower twice a year, based on that the grinder will pay for itself in time and is expected to keep our mowers sharp for many years.

The club has encouraged me to attend the annual AGCSA turf conference in Melbourne next week, I will report on my return as I plan to take a week of annual leave after the conference.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan



The rain last Saturday has benefited the course; some 80mm of rain fell and while heavy at times caused little damage. However the wind event that followed kept us busy all week removing leaf and branch debris.

Due to the rain, Unity Water shut off our irrigation water supply for 6 days but as we now have a dam we were able to irrigate.

Why did we need to water after so much rain? In this case we applied fertilizer to our new rear practice range which required ‘watering in’ and our new temporary green on the 16th needed water at weeks end as the seed has just germinated.

Previously once the water is ‘turned off’ we had to bleed air out of or pipe work. This takes time to slowly build water pressure and requires turning on sprinklers to purge air, often during play. Any trapped air builds up high pressure in the pipe, often causing a burst. Our dam now supplies constant water, making the above process unnecessary.

Work on our new 150mm pvc mainline has progressed to adjacent the 10th green a distance of about 320m. Our estimate of laying 100m of pipe in a day is working to plan and disruption to play is minimal. All staff have been involved and have done a great job of pipe laying and tidying up to date.

We have recently purchased a new Kubota tractor which has replaced our old tractor and has proved a very useful tool in our new works.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


During Saturday 80mm of rain fell. The course held up very well and was surprisingly dry on Sunday morning, it was decided that carts are allowed with due care, after our early course inspection.

We have begun work on our new pipeline and have progressed across the 10th fairway. We hope to progress to near the 9th tee by weeks’ end. The 9th hole will be shortened on Monday, Thursday and Friday this week.

Due to recent noise issues we are trialing a Jacobsen fully electric greens mower. It is on loan for a few days. Operation is almost silent, the only sound is minor and is the spinning cutting cylinders.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


The dry weather is starting to have an impact on the course. Dry spots on greens and fairways have been treated with wetting agent to improve water penetration.

We have raised the mowing height on fairways from 12mm to 14mm. This is to protect fairway turf during winter when growing conditions are slow due to increased shade, reduced sunlight hours and lower soil temperatures.

With construction of our dam completed we now have a permanent irrigation supply, but our worn out sprinkler system has major limitations.  Basically the fragile pipe work is undersized, the sprinklers worn and spare parts are no longer available for the hydraulic control valves.

That said, starting next week we begin installing new mainline pipe from the start of the 10th fairway to the 1st fairway. Work is planned only on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays till completed. For safety reasons we intend shortening holes when necessary, markers will be placed forward as required.

We have employed extra casual staff to help with the above so you will see a few new faces on the course.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


We have rolled the greens three times this week and also lightly groomed them to maintain smooth ball roll and green speed.

Last year we over-sowed diseased areas in greens with Bent grass to provide winter turf cover. We expected the Bent to die out during summer however it struggled through and with cooler weather it’s starting to flourish. We plan to spray the smaller plants and re-turf larger areas in Spring.

On Thursday evening our dam supplied irrigation to the course. Final pipe work and testing is complete. We currently draw about .7Ml a night and over 24 hours we estimate .8Ml flows in. Therefore it will take a few weeks to fill.

We have ordered a second aerator for the 2nd pond, we pumped water from our dam into the pond to raise water levels.

We are obtaining quotes to replace the practice nets and replace the carpet with artificial grass. Turf on our new practice fairway is 6 weeks old and we have a 60% turf cover. We will oversow target greens soon to have it ready for Spring.

As reported all boundary gate locks have been changed for security reasons. Keys are available from the office.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


We have rolled the greens twice this week, having a second greens roller has significantly improved our ability to roll regularly which will improve ball roll and green speed.

Liquid organic fertilizers and iron sulphate was applied to greens to improve color without promoting excessive growth.

Tees have been over-sown with a quality ryegrass to provide improved turf cover during winter. The new seed has germinated,  but tender and why some par 3 tee markers are well forward on non-main competition days.

The fence surrounding our new dam is completed and looks very smart, the black colour disappears nicely into the treed background.

With the fence complete, recycled water is now flowing into the dam. We intend part filling as the new foot valve needs to float so final pipe work adjustments can be made.

A suitable aerator is the final step and is due to be installed in a few weeks. The aerator will be on a timer to operate only during the day.

As reported we have applied a polymer product on the 5th path. It has taken a little longer to cure than anticipated so it may be roped off this weekend.

Unfortunately, ground staff member Jai Rochfort’s  father passed away suddenly during the week. Our thoughts are with Jai and his family.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


After last Sunday’s rain and recent fertilizer applications, our greens are looking healthy heading into winter. They were a bit slow last weekend but speed has improved during the week.

Water levels in the pond on the second hole have dropped and why our new aerator has been switched off as it was basically sucking mud, so we didn’t want to risk any damage.

5th path tee end. Next week we are trialling a polymer product which will be combined into the crushed granite (Deco) path. It is claimed the polymer will significantly reduce erosion and reduce storm rain washouts. It takes a few days to set, so it will be roped off temporarily.

We have been down on staff recently with Andy away for a few weeks due to illness, Dan our adult apprentice at trade school and Cari our casual unavailable. This combined with 3 public holidays in a month and a lot of play on the course has meant we are behind with a few jobs. 

Hopefully we will catch up next week.

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan


We have purchased another greens roller to make it possible to efficiently roll greens. We now can roll greens for special events and rolling is also the preferred option in winter especially when there is little growth.

The rear bunker on 2nd will be in play this weekend. There are a few surrounding turf areas that while not 100% are playable, given the distance from the green. 

We have accepted a quote for the fence on top of the dam wall. Work is planned for 9th May and is the final stage before we start filling.

We have demonstrated a new Kubota tractor to replace our aging tractor. A tractor with greater horse power and a front end loader is required for installation of the new irrigation system, as well as general course duties. 

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan


During the week we fed all greens with a low nitrogen and high potassium fertilizer to promote healthy hard turf as we head into winter. Fairways 1,4,14,15 and the new practice range were also fertilized with a fairway blend slow release fertilizer.

Turf on the new practice range has about 40% couch cover and improving rapidly, it should be ready to reopen in 4-6 weeks, if motor bike issues are resolved.

The rear 2nd bunker is ready for play but the surrounding turf needs a little more time. Last week we receive favorable comments re the sand in the new right side 2nd green bunker, the committee have suggested we wait a few more weeks before making any decisions.

New rakes have been placed in some bunkers to trial them. They are expensive but appear to rake well especially in dry sand.

You may have noticed paint lines on fairways along the route of our new irrigation mainline. We have located 240v power, irrigation wires and many pipes via ground penetrating radar, the locations were not previously accurately known.

The 200mm poly pipe for the inlet and suction lines to the new dam have been installed. A final decision on the fence quotes will be made next week. Our engineer requires a 1.8m black chain wire fence located on top of the dam wall to be installed as per his drawings.

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan


During the week we received 17mm of welcome rain which will aid turf recovery due to the recent dry spell.

I received 7 more emails re the sand in the new front right bunker on the 2nd, all but one suggested the sand in the left bunker on the 1st green is preferable. That sand was supplied by Southern Pacific Sands at Bribie Island.

I rang Pat Pauli the course superintendent of the new Maroochy River GC, as a very similar sand supplied by Southern Pacific Sands is in their bunkers. Pat suggested his members love the sand when its wet but hate it when its dry, as balls plug easily and ‘fried egg lies’ are common. In fact, he has a dedicated irrigation program ‘for bunkers’ to keep the sand moist. More opinions are welcome.

Work will commence on the  inlet and suction pipes for our new dam next week. We are still investigating a suitable aerator and are considering quotes for the black chainwire fence.

The rear practice fairway has greened up slightly unfortunately an undesirable on a dirt bike decided to wreck some of our good work. An inexpensive gal pipe fence may be required at the rear.

The Committee has asked me to remind cart operators of our cart rules.

  •          Drive on established paths where directed
  •          Observe and follow course directional signage
  •          Keep carts outside the Blue Line
  •          Where a blue line is not visible carts must remain 10 metres from greens (medical exemptions do apply in special circumstances)

Popular staff member Andy (who regularly mows fairways) suffered a severe medical condition last Wednesday, we all wish him a speedy recovery.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


The dry weather is starting to affect a few areas however; the course is playing well despite lack of rainfall.

I have only one email re the sand in the new front right bunker on the 2nd, which suggested the sand was a bit heavy and the sand in the left bunker on the 1st green is preferable. More opinions are welcome.

We have accepted a quote for the inlet and suction pipes required for our new dam. We are also investigating a suitable aerator and waiting on a quote for the 6ft black chain wire fence.

The rear practice fairway has been planted with a quality couch grass (Winter green couch) this was supplied and planted by a local turf farm. Our job is to keep it well watered until the sprigs set root, it will take a few weeks to green up and grow.

Our staff has had some difficult and unusual work to complete lately, they have adapted well and still managed to present the course to a high standard, well done to all.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


The 2nd bunker project has been completed. The rear bunker is visible from the tee; it will be a few weeks before it is in play. GUR areas are clearly marked for the weekend. 

Are there any comments re the sand in the new front right bunker? It is still settling down but perhaps a bit fluffy when the sand is dry.

The dam liner has been installed and tested. Inlet and suction pipes are the next step, quotes are being considered. Topsoil will be spread along the bund wall batters and a 6ft black chain wire fence is required for safety reasons. It will be another few weeks before we can begin filling.

Irrigation has been installed in the rear practice fairway and earthworks are completed. We are considering planting the fairway with a quality couch grass, if so once established it will also be a useful turf nursery.

We are in the process of thatching the immediate surrrounds of the greens (collar cut), the aim is to try to reduce the encroachment of the common couch into the 328.  There are no herbicides available to help us stop the common couch from encroaching. Visually some areas may take a little longer to recover. 

The putting greens will not be mowed on Tuesday mornings to enable the Ladies competition to tee off without any disruption. 

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan


The new front right 2nd bunker will be in play this weekend. The surrounding turf is playable but will remain as GUR for now. Staff were required at our dam site so no progress occurred with the rear bunker and associated turf work.

The dam liner has been installed, final seam bonding and testing will be completed on the weekend. The plastic is very slippery so please stay clear.

The rear practice fairway is taking shape and earthworks are nearing completion, we think it will be a well-used practice facility in future.

Ashley Hudson is the excavator operator and project manager of earthworks, he has done a fantastic job working very long hours. He loaded trucks through the day then levelled and shaped the practice fairway until well after dark to have it ready for trucks the next day.

Ashley was also responsible to our engineer for the construction of the bund wall, correct final levels and size and shape of the dam and placement of the plastic liner. A big thankyou is well deserved.

Murray has installed a modern aerator/water feature in the 2nd lake it is a vast improvement on previous water features. As reported he provided his electrical engineering skill and labour at no cost to the club.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Summer patch disease primarily in the 9th green appears controlled and turf recovery is evident.  We are monitoring progress daily. Greens were fertilized with a Hi K (potassium) fertilizer to help strengthen turf and promote growth to aid recovery.

The 2nd bunker. We have shaped and renovated drainage in the rear bunker, sand and turf is planned for next week. Our aim is to make this bunker visible from the tee and create the illusion of the old huge bunker, but much easier to maintain and ideally not slow play as in the past.

Except for final tidy up work, the dam excavation is more or less complete.  The Bund wall has been engineered and approved, meeting the required compaction tests easily. An anchor trench is currently being excavated to anchor the 1.5mm poly liner.

The liner is planned for next week weather permitting. As reported, the liner is required as without it, the natural clay base, having a high salt content, would leach salt and contaminate our new dam. 

The rear practice range is also being shaped. It will feature mounding to make it appear as a golf hole with three target greens at 100, 150 and 175 meters. Irrigation is planned for next week and topsoil will be spread soon after.

Murray (one of our adjoining neighbours) is currently installing a modern aerator/water feature in the 2nd lake. He is providing his electrical engineering skill and labour at no cost to the club.

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan


We dusted our greens on Thursday, unfortunately we had issues with the sand. Gypsum was premixed into the sand but some gypsum had gone hard causing problems while spreading. You may notice a few soft white stones surrounding greens.

Soil test results from the 3rd, 5th greens and 15th fairway have been received. Generally, the results are good with adequate levels of most nutrients. The major issue is Sodium, as levels have risen significantly due to lack of rainfall and high levels of sodium in the recycled irrigation water. We will continue to monitor levels.

Summer patch disease is again causing some concerns especially on the 9th green. We have applied a solid fungicide program since Xmas but it has proved a complex disease to deal with. We have applied additional fungicides and are monitoring daily, we believe we are seeing turf recovery.

The 2nd bunker project - we have shaped and turfed the surrounds of the first bunker, and placed sand into the bunker. I hope this sand will be agreeable to all as it drains well and packs down lightly. We will ask for comments when it settles down. It should be playable next week but the turf will remain GUR.

The drainage in this bunker works well but is subject to the water level of the 2nd lake to where it drains. A high lake water level is higher than the 2nd bunkers outlet drain so in wet times water cannot drain from the bunker until the lake level falls.

Bund wall engineering has slowed progress on the dam. With tests now completed progress will again be evident.

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan


Members have suggested our tees are very hard. We plan to spike all tees as soon as our tractor is available. Currently it is used to spread lime to neutralize acid sulphate clay from the dam site. Due to inadequate pipe sizing, tee irrigation is poor on some tees, so spiking and additional watering is also planned.

A big thankyou to Sandgate Golf Course. We broke the main belt on our lime spreading machine due to failure of the sub frame. Not all parts are available, Steve our clever mechanic is currently constructing a new frame. 

However, Sandgate came to our rescue loaning us their spreading machine and saved us having to stop work. For environmental reasons the dam dig cannot proceed without spreading some 130 tons of lime.

Dam work is continuing, to date we are at full depth of 5.5 meters. Our dam design engineer has agreed to a small reshape but has informed us that raising the dam walls is not possible without removing protected vegetation, which is not an option. 

We had hoped for 10 Mg/L capacity but capacity is now around 8 MG/L - providing potentially 10 days supply of maximum watering - a huge improvement on our current storage capacity which is zero.

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan


After last week’s growth we lightly dethatched all greens and sand dusted as per our weekly routine. Greens have responded well, ball roll and green speed has improved significantly.

Dam work is continuing;  to date we are nearing the half way dig point at about 2.5 metres in depth. We met with our design engineer this morning and he was pleased with progress. He is also considering a small reshape and strengthening of the dam wall to increase water capacity.

Progress has been made on the bunker on the right hand side of the 2nd green. The large bunker will be replaced by two smaller bunkers and a grassy hollow in front of these bunkers.

Both of the two new bunkers on the right hand side will be made visible from the tee.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan

15th January 2016

During the week we spot sprayed weeds in greens. We have various weed types such as Blue Couch, Mullumbimby Couch (neither are actually ‘couch’ grasses), Crows foot, Nutgrass, Carpet grass and others so more than one herbicide is required. The correct herbicide is applied to each weed type as separate applications. 

The ‘Bent grass’ which we used to over sow disease areas last Autumn has browned off due to summer conditions. Bent was sown as a temporary solution and was planned to die off allowing the 328 Bermuda turf to grow back this summer. 

The leaning Tallwood tree near the 3rd bridge has been removed. We had an arborist check the tree re safety concerns that it could fall at any time- he recommended its removal. We had hoped a heavy prune might save part of the tree- but the stump came out very easily proving it was poorly anchored. The dead top of a Blue Gum near the first 4th pond was also cut.

As reported we have begun work on the 2nd bunker. More fill is planned for next week. We are able to use the existing drainage so this project should be completed fairly soon once sufficient fill is obtained. The bunker is GUR so the ‘nearest point of relief no nearer the hole rule may be of benefit.’ 

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan - Course Superintendent

8th January 2016

During the week one of our staff (Jai) was hit in the head while raking the 10th greenside bunker. He was struck on the full on his forehead, fortunately his sunglasses protected him from the full force of the ball but he still suffered a nasty lump and bruising. 

However, the ball could have easily taken Jai’s eye out or hit him in the temple causing serious injury. The player concerned was very apologetic and said he did not see where the ball went but admitted he saw staff raking bunkers up ahead.

The club’s position is course staff have right of way and players must wait until called. Staff have been trained to be aware of golfers and to be as efficient and polite as possible, but we still have a job to do. Safety is a major issue and golfers whom the law deems as injuring a staff member recklessly may well suffer severe penalties.   

The concrete work at the 1st tee is completed, it is closed off till next Monday.

2nd hole. As reported we plan to modify the large right hand bunker using the course master plan as a guide. Material to fill in part of the bunker will hopefully be available next week. Grassy hollows and mounds will be a feature and bunker visuals will be enhanced.

Mark Gahan - Course Superintendent

25th December 2015

We have had irrigation issues, a burst water main in the 9th rough on Xmas Eve was a difficult repair, fortunately Shane Krueger’s help and fibro pipe repair experience proved invaluable. Unity Water also shut us off for 24 plus hours; fortunately 17mm of rain and mild weather helped us get by.

We have experienced a very windy holiday period, much of our time has been spent cleaning up debris. A short working week and staff holidays has not helped.

We are happy with our greens to date, however at this time last year we experienced a growth surge in hot humid conditions that took us some time to regain quality surfaces. It was soon after an outbreak of the turf disease ‘summer patch’ occurred. This year we have applied additional fungicides to protect against similar issues and groomed greens regularly to control growth.

The 1st tee. Unfortunately, the concrete planned at the rear of the tee was not available due to Xmas. Deco has been placed as a temporary measure.

Happy Golfing and let’s hope our bad holes are all Pars in 2016

Mark Gahan – Course Superintendent

18th December 2015

Our greens have responded well to a recent fertilizer application. We trialled a new product on a few greens (5, 13 14 and Putters) as these greens need an extra boost to maintain plant health. A fungicide application is planned for next week to protect greens from disease over the Xmas period.

Turf has been laid at the rear of the 1st tee.  Concrete is planned for next week to create more space and additional cart parking.

Much of the mistletoe at the 15th dogleg has been removed. Unfortunately, the heights involved meant not all could be removed safely, but at least 90% was removed.

We have received the awaited ‘acid sulphate’ report from David Burrup. Guess what!  there are only very low levels of acid sulphate below the practice fairway which means acid sulphate levels will have no effect on our proposed reshaping and upgrading work. Flood modelling indicates similar findings so hopefully our permit will be issued promptly.

Thank you to Jai Rochfort and my ground staff for looking after the course while both Peter and I were away early this week.  Peter is on annual leave and I had family matters to attend to in Melbourne.

We have two new casuals working over Summer; Jordon and Cari. Jordon is ground staff member Dan’s son and Cari is from Canada studying for her PHD, previously she has worked on a golf course for three Summer seasons. 

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


0ur greens are again due to be dethatched and sand dusted –work is planned for early next week. Dusting and dethatching is planned either weekly or bi weekly during summer- there is a short term visual effect however ball roll is not affected.

We have swapped mowers for cutting green surrounds and tees. The Toro mower (now cutting tees) has heavier cutting units whereas the previous John Deere mower has lighter floating heads. Some areas have scalped slightly – we expect the visual effects are only temporary.

We have new tee signs- a huge thank you to Shane Krueger, Bill Williams and George Thompson who spent the entire day erecting them. There are a few wheel marks on the tees caused by the Bob Cat while removing the old solidly concreted in signs- they will soon grow over.

The rear of the 1st tee has been reshaped and lengthened by a few metres. As reported we are creating new mounds and have widened the path at the rear to improve space for cart parking. Concrete is planned where the carts will park and turf work should be completed next week.

Tree work planned for next Tuesday the 15th has changed. The large travel tower required is only available after 10am so we will concentrate on removing the mistletoe at the 15th dogleg. The other trees are booked for early in the new year.

Congratulations to Clive Sellwood and his wife Maragret (for many years our volunteer weed eradicator) who have just celebrated 60 years of marriage.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan



0ur greens are due to be dethatched and sand dusted, work is planned for early next week.

As reported the 4th hill has been sown with Japanese millet for temporary stabilization- seed has germinated and greened most of the slope. 

We have made progress with the dam. Flood modelling has shown our planned practice fairway upgrade and dam work will have only a very minor effect in the advent of a major flood. Bore holes have been drilled on the practice range to determine how much dam material can be placed there. Hopefully our permit is not far away.

I have a quote to either prune or cut down the large leaning gum tree near the 3rd bridge and also to remove the dead top of another gum on the left of the 4th near the first pond. We also plan to remove mistletoe from the two Queensland Blue gums on the left dogleg on 15th.

Shane Krueger is our new Greens Director and we look forward to working with him. I personally wish to thank outgoing Greens Director John Singleton for his enthusiastic help and support over the past 18 or so months. Johns assistance and encouragement has been great and has really helped my wife and I feel part of the Redcliffe Golf Club.

Happy Golfing 
Mark Gahan 
Course Superintendent


0ur greens were lightly de thatched during the week and are generally rolling well. Our new greens nursery is also rapidly ‘growing in’.

The 4th hill has been sown with Japanese millet for temporary stabilization. We spread some old thatching material from our fairways to cover and protect the seed. As reported we plan to plant it with indigenous and native groundcovers in Autumn.

A meeting was held with Cr Koliana Winchester and MBRC Engineers on site to discuss the processes required by council to obtain approval to complete our water storage/dam.

We believe that Council have a much better understanding of the club’s situation in regard to our need for water storage.

We were able to explain to them the positive impact the golf course has on the community and the green environment that is managed successfully by the club.

They were happy with the location and construction details they have received for the dam.

It appears that their main sticking point is the weight of the spoil we place around the course and the disruption it may cause to underlying sulphate acid soils.

Initially we had verbal Council approval to spread dam material around the course providing it stayed on our golf course. Our concept was to create mounds at strategic locations as well as on the practice fairway.

However, Council thought this meant we were spreading dam material 50mm thick over the entire golf course, which would not have an issue to them, but certainly not a popular option for golf.
We have agreed to obtain soil samples from locations we intend to place the spoil, at this stage the practice range and right hand side of the 15th fairway.

These samples will indicate the depth of spoil that is allowed to be placed over existing surfaces.
Unfortunately acid sulphate soils cover a great percentage of our course which puts any future changes/upgrades/master planning under the same regulations we are currently experiencing.  

We have mowed the old ladies 16th tee for a temporary practice tee. Obviously check with the Pro Shop before practice. Please use yellow golf balls only. It is also ok to practice on the back range for shorter irons till work resumes.

Just a reminder 5.30 am is the earliest play can commence every morning, ground staff need time ahead of the field to present the course for daily play.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan


Our greens continue to improve and are generally rolling well.

As reported some fairways are still a little slow to recover. In thin areas a mite known as ‘couchmite’ is effecting turf recovery. It is a sucking insect and perhaps causing more damage than previously thought. The mites, while easy to kill are hard to contact so repeated applications of a miticide has being applied.

Our 4th hill – so far the preferred option is to plant it with indigenous and native groundcovers. We plan to sow it with an inexpensive grass cover crop to protect it from erosions during summer. This grass and a myriad of weeds that will germinate will  be sprayed out in Autumn prior to planting.

Due to the recent lightning strike our central irrigation computer was beyond repair despite the best efforts of our local technician. Rainbird have been great and helped us set up a temporary computer with software, a dedicated computer is part of our new irrigation system and Rainbird have agreed to fast track its delivery.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan 


0ur greens are now being mowed at 3.5mm,- we are pleased with progress to date.

Some fairways are still a little slow to recover but continue to improve significantly every week.

Our 4th hill has been shaped, our options are to plant it out with indigenous groundcovers or alternatively hydra seed it with spray on grass seed and or turf sprigs.  We plan also to returf the track created by heavy vehicles from our maintenance compound.

Our central irrigation computer was damaged by recent lightning storms- therefore Peter had to program all satellites on the course,  this was very time consuming and inefficient method to irrigate the course, but our only option as our current irrigation system is badly outdated. The computer is still away being repaired.

Our new tee signs are currently being manufactured, they will be delivered in a few weeks.

As members are aware dam work has stalled temporarily due to permit issues. Our view was we were simply gaining material for target greens on our land, but the council considers it as having started work, hopefully it can be sorted out quickly. How many thousands of greens, bunkers, tees, ponds etc have been built on existing courses without ever needing permits, almost all.

Thank you to Murray Ockenfel, a friendly neighbour who lives near the 2nd. Murray has built us an aerator which he installed in the pond on the 2nd. It was built using a modified outboard motor at no cost to the club.  

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


Our greens have responded well to recent renovations and we are pleased to report their steady recovery. We are currently mowing at 4 mm which will further tighten the turf. They will be a bit slow for a week or two but should soon return to quality putting surfaces.

Our top putting green has yellowed; an irrigation fault meant that applied fertilizer was not watered in correctly causing a slight burn. The 10mm of rain last night will aid recovery.

As reported Unity Water turned our irrigation water off for 5 days after our renovation. Due to this we were unable to fertilize our fairways last week as planned, we fertilized them this week. Another week of growth should see a big improvement.

Our greens nursery is progressing better than we initially thought. Thank you to Bill Williams whose efforts in keeping it moist using mains water last weekend has given it a chance.

Preliminary dam work is going to plan. As reported we are building target greens and enhanced mounding on the rear practice range which will make it a quality facility. We have used the opportunity to cart material for this purpose.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


A huge thankyou to the many members who helped us clean up over 200 truckloads of grass material scarified from the fairways. We knew it would be a big job and it was. Without the volunteers we would have had no chance of clearing up before this weekend.

As reported the fairways will take a couple of weeks to recover, the amount of thatch removed proved they were well overdue for renovation. Preferred lies will apply.

Greens renovation went to plan, 40mm of rain in an hour or so on Wednesday morning washed the sand in nicely but complicated clean-up work for fairways.

Due to the rain Unity Water has again turned off our irrigation supply. This has had a major impact on our new greens nursery which we sprigged then discovered we had no water.

Unfortunately the sprigs dried out before we were able to work out a temporary irrigation solution. We are not expecting a great result and believe we will have to sprig it again.

We had also planned to fertilize fairways but again this can’t happen till irrigation is restored. We certainly need our dam constructed as soon as possible.

That mentioned, next week we intend preparing the dam site for major earthworks. It is preliminary works to get the site ready to avoid further delays. The back practice range will close while work is carried out.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan


The course is closed on Monday and Tuesday for renovations. Greens will be hollow tyned (or cored) with 8mm tynes and top dressed with sand. This year we have pre mixed humus and dolomite lime into the sand. As usual the greens will be a bit bumpy and sandy for a week or so. 

As reported we plan to scarify our fairways and a few volunteers would be helpful on Tuesday to rake up and cart grass away, if you are thinking of helping please meet at the maintenance shed at 7.30am on Tuesday. Bring a grass rake along if possible.

Yesterday we had a lot of debris and leaves blow around the course, unfortunately our ‘Turtle’ which vacuums this up has broken down therefore we will simply have to blow fairway debris into the roughs.

Our new greens nursery has suffered a temporary setback due to 15mm of unexpected rain. Trucks delivering sand were unable to access so delivery was cancelled. Hopefully next week the track will dry out.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan


An email has suggested the greens are very firm and more irrigation could be applied. Yes we understand the greens are firm. However all quality greens are firm and as the former superintendent of Kingston Heath GC in Melbourne said to me "it’s not the green that stops the ball it’s up to the skill of the player to control the ball".

More water will soften greens and provide greater control for average players but our poor quality recycled water has many agronomic issues associated with it and why I irrigate less than perhaps others in the past.

Greens renovation next week will help provide more 'give' to the surfaces and obviously as the weather warms up more irrigation is needed. It’s a balancing act between too firm and not enough irrigation.

As reported this year we plan to scarify our fairways-a contractor has been booked. They will collect the debris and dump it in piles for us to remove. We will use our Bobcat and truck to remove much of it but a few volunteers would be helpful on Tuesday (13th) to rake up remaining material and cart it away.

The fairways will look a bit ordinary for a couple of weeks but once recovered the benefits will be obvious. 

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan


This week we back filled our new pipeline and completed many of the small tidy up jobs. A section of trench has been left open where we plan to install a tapping for our new greens nursery. There is a little more leveling work to complete.

Next week we plan to strip the nursery site of approx. 500sqm and install irrigation. Suitable clean sand will be carted in once we have excavated down about 100mm to remove all existing turf and roots. The nursery will be sprigged using cores from our greens renovation in October.

Peter James is on holidays therefore irrigation gremlins have occurred. A few sprinklers are leaking- when the water is turned back on bits of algae or sand in the pipeline prevent anti drain seals working correctly. Sometimes flicking them on/off solves the problem but often they need to be dug up and cleaned. 

We have 3 fairways left to spike the 5th 9th and 10th. All fairways were fertilized during the week.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan


We received 25mm of rain on Wednesday evening and during Thursday.

Our focus this week was the new pipeline around the dam site. I’m pleased to say our staff have done a great job. 

Installing large pipe is dirty, heavy work especially in the trench. A lot of thought and measurements was needed to perfectly align the new pipe to the existing 200mm pipeline, at an exact right angle. This was achieved to the millimetre. 

We now have to concrete trust blocks around the cast fittings to prevent movement and carefully backfill the trench. 

Our next projects are to construct a turf nursery (near the new pipe) and prepare the dam site for major excavation.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan


Greens were lightly dethatched and fertilized during the week. Worn areas on the 7th and 10th green were patched with turf from the chipping green.

As taking turf from the chipper is not ideal, we will soon build a new greens nursery on the spare land left of the 10th as per our course master plan. All golf courses need such a nursery to replace damaged or worn turf for various reasons. 

It has been decided to place the material from our dam dig on the back driving range. This material will be shaped to look like a golf hole rather than a paddock to create a better practice experience. Other than closure of the range (for a time) there will be no impact on the golf course.

Sprayed Kikuyu grass has yellowed making it obvious how much Kikuyu is in some fairways. Follow up applications will be required as complete control is difficult.

The two very large ‘Queensland blue gum’ trees on the left dogleg of the 15th require help. They are badly infected with ‘mistletoe’, we have been advised that unless it is removed they will die. We are considering a quote to remove the mistletoe. 

Work will start next week to realign the existing main pipeline around the dam site.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan


Spring weather has promoted growth. The greens have responded as have fairways and tees.

Work to realign the existing mainline around the new dam site is planned for Monday 14th when an excavator will dig the line. We have located the existing main and where the new pipe will rejoin it.

Other preliminary work is being completed, pipe and fittings are on site.

Fairway spiking is continuing, so far 12 fairways have been aerated. As a trial we have spot sprayed Kikuyu grass in the 12th and odd areas of other fairways. We expect little or no discoloration to couch grass but the Kikuyu will yellow and decline. Follow up applications will be required.

We have replaced the missing 150m post on the 15th and remeasured nearby sprinklers that were incorrect.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan


With the onset of warmer temperatures, greens growth has increased so we will soon return to our regular grooming programs to provide consistent surfaces.

We have commenced aerating fairways, this process punches 12mm holes 100mm deep and works like a garden fork in loosening the sub soil to relieve compaction. It is a slow process which has located some long lost irrigation valves keeping Peter James busy effecting repairs. There is very little effect to fairway playing surfaces.

David Burrup and his team have finally provided a plan for our new dam. They have recommended an option which will provide one month of storage for greens and tees should our water supply be disrupted for an extended period. 

Currently we have no water storage to irrigate with, given the above situation, only recently our water was turned off for 10 days due to issues at the treatment plant.

Work will soon start for stage one of our new irrigation pipeline. Our existing mainline must be relocated as it runs through the dam site and will be diverted around the dam and then continue all the way to the 2nd fairway (stage 2). 

John Singleton has had major knee surgery and will be sidelined for a few weeks. We wish John a speedy recovery. 

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan

21st August 2015

Mark has had to attend to some family business and will be away this week.

Practice Putting Area

Renovation to the practice putting green will begin on the week of September 21.

The renovations are planned to coincide with the course renovations due on the week of October 12

As part of the renovations it’s planned to introduce a new turf nursery alongside of the 10th fairway and also alter/reshape the right-hand bunker on the 2nd with soil left over from the renovation to the putting green.

Fire Training

We have conducted Fire Training with all staff.

Areas covered include methods of managing oil & electrical fires as well as chemical spills.

Course Renovations

Course renovations are scheduled for Monday 12 & Tuesday 13 of October.

The Greens will be cored and the Fairways thatched.

It is estimated that it will take approximately 2 weeks for the course to recover.


We are still awaiting Plans & Documentation from David Burrup.

Unfortunately the delays are very frustrating. 

We have ordered pipes and fitting to divert the irrigation pipe that currently runs through the proposed dam site.

This diversion is necessary before any excavation works can begin.


Dan who has signed up for a mature age apprentice in Green Keeping has completed his first stint at the Ithaca Technical College.

Well done Dan.


Steve our mechanic is doing a great job in maintaining our fleet of Carts.

He has fixed several minor problems and is in constant contact with the manufacturer re any warranty issues.

John Singleton

Greens Director

14th August 2015

Cold winter nights has slowed growth and slightly discoloured less elevated greens. During the week they were fertilized to help restore colour.

This year the committee has approved fairway renovation, all fairways will be scarified to remove many years of thatch accumulation. Work is planned to be done by contractors when the course is closed during greens renovation in mid-October.

We have completed turf and path work on the new 7th mound. A new cart path is also planned besides the 8th tee. Special thank you to Bill Williams and Bob Dickson who helped us lay turf.

We are keen to redesign the ‘sandmine’ bunker on the right of the 2nd green. This bunker is unattractive and slows play due to the time it takes to rake and exit it. The course master plan also recommends this bunker be redesigned and reduced in size.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan

7th August 2015

During the week we lightly sand dusted all greens. At present the turf surface is ‘tight’ so the sand didn't ‘rub-in’ quite as well as usual and the reason why there is a little sand visible. However any effect on putting is minimal.

As reported, we dust with sand to dilute any thatch build up so surfaces remain firm and smooth, also the air space created aids microbes who feed on thatch to help break it down.

We have completed final shaping on the 7th mound and turf is planned for next week. A new cart path is also planned to the 8th tee, ideally all cart traffic should now use it.

The rough cart track to the right of 7 is not a cart path, carts have ruined the turf and created an unsightly scar. It is also dangerous as it is a landing area from the 4th tee. I know habits are difficult to change but the new path will be a big improvement.

Blue dots have appeared on a few fairways, we are considering minor changes to fairway shapes.
Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan

2015 AGCSA Turf Conference Report


Lectures by Dr Jack Fry a leading American agronomist- he spoke for 3 hours on maintaining turf in high stress summer humidity. He spoke of similar situations that occur at Redcliffe during summer and emphasized the importance of air movement over turf in hot humid conditions.

He also suggested turf must have good carbohydrate reserves in humid low light conditions to maintain quality.

Also rolling greens more and mowing less improves turf health when under stress. He also enforced the role of air in the soil and how important regular spiking is to maintain root health and stimulation of beneficial microbes living in the soil. Aeration is something we practice regularly and why we can renovate only once a year.


An intensive lecture on the danger of sun exposure and various forms of skin cancer. Three greenkeepers also gave first hand experiences of surgery and recovery from melanomas. The importance of sunscreens, sunglasses and protective clothing was reinforced-perhaps long sleeved work tops should be considered.

Dr Fry was back talking of the importance of turf in a green society. Apparently ‘concrete’ is carbon neutral once laid. It turns out that well maintained turf is also carbon neutral- and has side benefits - it releases oxygen, stores carbon di oxide, doesn’t absorb heat, acts as a filter to protects the soil and environment during extremes in wet and dry conditions- and besides you can play golf on it.

Other talks were of interest -Preparation of The Deere Run in USA for their recent golf event and an interesting scientific talk re Poa control on Macquarie Island.  Poa annua or Winter Grass grows here in Queensland and also thrives in Antarctica- it’s a world-wide pest weed for greenkeepers.

The next key lecture was regarding ‘cockchafer or white curl grubs, and the adult beetle which is the common small black beetle. A lot of research has shown the textbooks are not accurate as egg laying and hatching varies Australia wide. These grubs are a problem at Redcliffe.

Much of the afternoon was taken up with the trade show and machinery demonstrations.


The new courses on King Island were highlighted -very interesting talks by the Superintendent of Cape Wickham and the owner/architect of Ocean Dunes were well received.

Other talks were about golf course architecture and the need for courses to find ways to speed up a round of golf. Golf is losing players worldwide- one reason is people are time poor and it takes too long to play.

Also more ladies need introduction to golf- currently courses are set up for regular members-much shorter courses might be a way to attract new beginner ladies to the game.

The day’s final topic was about new fungal diseases causing significant issues on many well to do clubs in Sydney. So far no chemistry has provided successful control- it has also been noted in Queensland on a few courses. It’s believed to be spread by infected divots. While turf is not killed it is visually significant – perfect fairway are covered by hundreds of irregular yellow/brown rings.


David Bancroft/Turner a world-wide expert in staff management gave an interactive workshop on staff management specializing in ‘changing behaviour’.

This was excellent- teaching skills of dealing with troublesome employees. He gave an example of a 6 gold medal winning Olympic rower- a great athlete but nobody wanted him in the team because of his behaviour and personality issues.  This session taught me how to deal with similar and  other situations.

Dr Fry was back for the afternoon program discussing irrigation management.  He covered a lot of information on the clever use of irrigation.

One point stood out- he suggested allowing the surface to dry between irrigations promotes deeper denser roots also drier soils promote root development.  Wet or damp soil conditions promote leaf growth but roots decline. Wet soils also promote higher soil temperatures in summer so roots also decline.

Mark Gahan

31st July 2015

During the week we aerated all greens with needle tynes, with no effect on putting surfaces.

As reported we do this to relieve compaction and create air movement in the root zone, this stimulates root growth and microbial activity. Doing this regularly means we need only one major renovation a year.

We have completed turf work on the path at the rear of the 18th green. So far the new path has been well received. Further shaping work is continuing on the 7th mound, we hope to complete it next week.

Club Captain John Jayo has asked us to place new OOB pegs next to the 10th tee. This is our dam site and hopefully work will commence soon.

We have preliminary results from the recent soil tests at the dam site.  Results indicate our conceptual plan is workable and engineers are currently finalizing details.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan

24th July 2015

A burst of warmer weather has produced extra growth and slowed greens slightly.

We have returned the rollers that were here to trial. While they were efficient, I suggest an electric roller may have the additional benefit of noiseless operation.

Next week we hope to commence shaping the fill placed at the 7th. More fill than expected became available which now gives us a nice height to work to.

We have some turf work to complete the new path at the rear of the 18th green. It is now open to carts. More DECO will be laid at the start of the path next week.

Late on Friday we had a hydraulic hose burst on a mower, this occurred near the 1st green and on the 2nd tee. Unfortunately it was under the seat and behind the operator and so not immediately detected. Sand has been spread over the oil but it will leave a scar.

17 July 2015

We have been trialling a greens roller, there is very little growth at present so greens so have been rolled most mornings instead of mowing.  So far the results seem promising, as the surfaces are smooth and rolling well. 

During the week all fairways were fertilized with nitrogen/iron to help maintain colour.
We have had an influx of clean fill this week which has been placed at the 7th and 4th hill.
A large section of shade-cloth mat has been removed from the base of the 4th fairway bunker. Unfortunately the base of this bunker is not flat and the mat became exposed at high points and once damaged by our bunker rake was impossible to repair. 
Another sand bin is planned for the chipping range opposite the 2nd tee, it is a distance to sand bins in that area.
As reported we have begun work to realign the path at the rear of the 18th green. So far we have removed the block wall and redirected pipe work to the new drinking fountain location. We are currently bringing in clean fill to create a small mound to hide the path as seen from the 18th fairway.
10 July 2015

A turf equipment company has provided greens rollers for us to trial, we have them to use for couple of weeks.

They are a vibrating roller design which fit our Toro mowers in place of the cutting heads. The vibrating effect is claimed to smooth out small irregularities providing a much smoother putting surface.  We will be interested in any feedback as to the above.

Clean fill is continuing to be placed into the old 7th fairway bunker albeit not as quickly as we had hoped. Hopefully there are more local swimming pools requiring excavation.

Next week we plan to commence work to realign the path at the rear of the 18th green. The retaining wall at the bottom of the putting green will be removed and the new path will exit next to where the sand boxes are currently located. The path will be a Deco path.

3 July 2015

Hopefully the spell of wet cloudy weather is behind us so wet areas around the course will continue to dry out.

We have started patching small bare areas on the 3rd and 10th greens where the fungus disease damaged the turf. Turf recovery as expected is slow at this time of year.

We removed clean sand down to the water table from the old 7th fairway bunker and stockpiled it for future use. Clean fill is currently being brought in, this will continue until we are happy with levels. We are creating new mounds and plan to realign the cart path.

Test holes down to 6 meters have been drilled at the dam site . The engineers are testing for acid sulphate soils and water table levels - clay suitability and ground salt levels are also being double checked.

We have been tidying up overdue safety issues around our maintenance shed. Steve our mechanic has done a great job of building a bridge to replace the rickety stairs to the rear entry.

As reported last week I attending the annual AGCSA turf conference. I would like to thank the club for encouraging me to attend. I found the high calibre of lecturers and machinery demonstrations to be an excellent learning and networking experience. 

19th June 2015

Greens were aerated during the week with 7mm solid tynes to a depth of 100mm. After rolling and mowing it was very difficult to notice any surface disruption. We do this to relieve compaction, improve drainage and air movement in the soil.

The fungal disease ‘black Helminthosporium’ (or black Helmo) is very noticeable in many fairways. It is a leaf disease which turns leaves a black colour; starting out as small round spots that quickly join together. There are sprays available but spraying fairways is an expensive option. This disease is favored by damp conditions, recovery will occur once the fairways dry out.

We have completed turf work re the small course projects on 13, 15, and 18th.

Next week I am attending the annual AGCSA turf conference near Newcastle. I have found past conferences an invaluable learning and networking experience. Excellent lectures and machinery demonstrations are well organized and we freely discuss turf/course matters with some of Australia's and overseas leading Course Superintendents, Course Architects and Educators.

For those who thought we irrigated fairways last Sunday morning – we did not. In fact we have hardly irrigated fairways for weeks. We did have a combined 23mm of drizzle on Friday and Saturday nights and a week of very damp cool weather.

Please operate golf carts with care and respect for the course this weekend. While the course has dried out very well there are still wet areas to avoid.

12th June 2015

Dear Member

Being a short week, we were unable to make further progress on our unfinished small projects.

Greens were fertilized during the week with high potassium based fertilizer; potassium is a key element for turf strength, wear and disease resistance especially during cooler months. Some nitrogen and additional nutrients were also applied to maintain colour.  

As reported we are rolling greens most mornings cutting only on main competition days, as very little growth is occurring at present.

We have spot sprayed fairway areas affected by ‘couch mites’. These are random small areas of thinning turf which indicate mite damage; such areas may require spring growth to fully recover.

Greens will be mowed, holes moved and bunkers raked for the club championship finals on Sunday. We are looking forward to some great golf.

5th June 2015

With the onset of winter- greens growth has slowed so we are rolling 3 mornings a week and mowing on other mornings. The oversown diseased areas are improving and should soon return to full turf cover. 
We have been working on bunker entry points. We trim back where loose sand has created a lip then undermine the entry point- lowering turf height and improving step-in access. This process is not obvious and has no effect on play.
Work has started to repair the path exit point from the 4th tee. This area was badly worn and will be filled up with soil and topped with Deco.
We have had difficulty getting turf from our usual supplier- which is why we haven’t turfed areas mentioned in a previous report. 
David Burrup and his team have been appointed to gain the necessary approvals so we can finally commence dam construction.

29th May 2015 

As a trial we have over sown the clubhouse putting green with Poa trivialis. Many Northern NSW and Southern Queensland clubs over sow shaded greens to protect the semi dormant hybrid couch during winter to provide pleasing winter surfaces and colour. It remains open for practice but is a bit sandy at present.

The Committee has agreed to fill in the large left hand fairway bunker on the 7th. This bunker mainly affects less talented players, who often hit from this bunker into the next bunker holding up play.

While this 7th bunker provides some protection to the 8th fairway we believe mounding can achieve similar protection. It will be reshaped with mounds and valleys similar to the new work on the left of 18th the green. Work is planned in a few weeks.

A message was left to us written on the ‘No Carts Past this Point’ sign between the 9th and 14th greens. Twelve months ago golf carts had badly worn a track through this area which was devoid of turf. Since carts have been directed to ‘cart paths’ either side of these greens this area has recovered fully. So to the writer; perhaps we are not ‘F.I.s’ after all. 

22nd May 2015

Last weekend we cut a few interesting pin positions for round 1 of the championships. A strong breeze dried surfaces, speeding up exposed greens making scoring difficult, even so we still had some great scores.

We have redirected the cart path on the 5th tee and topped up the path rear 10th green. A section of the new 15th ladies tee path is being reshaped as it was a little steep. There is turf work to complete around paths and the small mound on 18 which is planned for next week.

The results from soil samples (greens 3,5,7,14) were very pleasing with low salt and sodium readings. Potassium levels are low but all other nutrient levels were good and consistent over the four greens tested. 

Fairways have been fertilized during the week.

15th May 2015

Our greens are putting well, perhaps slightly faster due to cooler temperatures combined with our preparation for the club championships. 

We oversowed thin areas on greens with bent grass and all shaded tees with ryegrass during the week.

The 4th and 9th greenside paths have been topped up with deco, it’s over twelve months since they were installed and in general have performed well. We have started work on the 5th tee path to redirect wear and tidy the badly worn area.

We used spare turf to turf the edge of the 16th tee men’s path. A member pointed out the danger of tripping or damaging an ankle so we repaired the most dangerous section.

Soil samples were taken from four greens (3,5,7,14) to be tested for nutrients, salts etc. We expect results in a week or so.

As per last year’s club championships; greens will be cut and bunkers raked Saturday and Sunday. The holes will remain in the same location for both days. They will be moved for matchplay finals.

8th May 2015

Last week’s rain (253mm) changed our plans for this week. We spent Monday, Tuesday and Thursday repairing bunkers and paths. There is still work to complete.

Interestingly our experimental ‘Bunker Brick’ bunker on the 4th green survived almost in perfect condition, whereas every other bunker on the course was trashed.

We have spoken to wellknown golf consultant David Burrup re our proposed dam to help us provide final design and engineering requirements to Council.

As of today Unity Water has not reopened our irrigation supply pipeline so we have no water. We planned to oversow tees but without irrigation we have to wait till next week, we certainly require our own independent irrigation dam.

1st May 2015

Some 218mm of rain has fallen to 6pm today and more is expected. Many areas have been underwater for most of the afternoon.

Bunkers and paths have been badly affected so please don't expect usual playing conditions tomorrow. There is a change of competition from a Single Stroke to Single Stableford tomorrow.

Unfortunately golf carts will not be allowed on the course on Saturday. There will be a review re carts on Sunday if the rain stops.

During Thursday we spiked all greens with mini tynes to a depth of 100mm to aerate them, as part of our greens maintenance program. After a roll surface disruption is almost zero.

Let's hope for some dry weather
Mark Gahan

24 April 2015

During the week we lightly dethatched greens to encourage fine leaf production and reduce surface puffiness.Next week we will over sow thin areas with ‘bentgrass’ as it is similar in appearance and playability to 328 and will transition out readily in spring.

We have installed a new deco path on the 13th, there is a little turf work to complete.

Bunker walk-in has been modified on the 18th to provide improved access.

Painted blue ‘T’ where bunker rakes should be placed has generally been supported by members. We understand there is no perfect system for placing rakes in or near bunkers.

Thank you to members who have provided feedback re our 1st tee concepts, some good points have been raised and further feedback is welcome.

Our blue line system around greens is well supported by the majority of members. There has been a noticeable improvement to turf quality in previously cart worn areas. Also not having many ugly rope or timber barriers is a huge visual improvement to the course. 

Please continue your support and perhaps remind errant cart operators that the blue line benefits all members

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan

17th April 2015

Thin areas in our greens are slowly improving, they have reduced in size and new shoots of 328 are appearing. As reported we will oversow these areas if needed before winter.

We plan to oversow our thin and shaded tees with ryegrass in the next couple of weeks.

New deco paths on the 4th (where existing path meets the fairway) 5th (tee path forward) and 13th (connect tee path to concrete path) are planned, also existing paths will be topped up.

The Management Committee has asked me to relocate our bunker rakes. We have painted a blue ‘T’ where the rakes should be placed.

The benefit:- rakes are placed at easy entry/exit points so we encourage members to replace rakes on the ‘T’ - this should stop players walking up/down steep bunker faces. We have also initiated a program to continue to improve entry points.  

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan


10th April 2015

During the week leading up to Easter, 95mm of rain was recorded. This affected course preparation, as areas of the course could not be mowed. However the boys still did a great job in the rain, especially being short staffed and a short work week.

Our greens are recovering from the fungal disease ‘summer brown patch’. It has been a particularly nasty outbreak, the disease was treated at an early stage but our chemistry proved ineffective as it had been stored for too long. Our most recent test identified the disease as controlled.

We have learnt valuable lessons, fortunately greens scarring is primarily visual with minimal effect on ball roll. While warm conditions prevail, we plan to push thin areas with fertilizer and seaweed solutions and perhaps oversow in a few weeks to provide winter cover.

We have cut the 8th fairway back towards the tee by about 20 metres to accommodate beginner golfers.

Happy Golfing
Mark Gahan

Should any Redcliffe members be planning an Autumn golf trip to Melbourne’s Mornington Peninsula, we have a holiday house in Rosebud which can accommodate 3 to 4 couples in comfort. It has all the mod cons 4 bedrooms 3 bathrooms nice views and is centrally located about 10min drive to most major peninsula courses. 

It can be viewed on Stayz website (Rosebud page 4) under the name ‘Sunset Views’. Contact my wife Sara directly and we offer further discounts to Redcliffe members (0414 591 806)


31 March 2015

Soil  tests have indicated that the fungus disease "brown patch" is under control.
Our goal now is to get the greens healthy again.
We have started adding nutrients which will add juice to the plant leaf and give the greens a bit of colour.
We have also raised the cutting height from 3mm to 3.5mm to help them along.
They will still roll well but may be a little slower.
We cut the fairways and green collars at 12mm which gives the holes a good profile effect when looking down the fairways. 
We have made some minor tidy up alterations to the 3rd & 4th front bunkers by adding grass to the entrance of the 3rd and around the metal drain in the 4th.
The blue section of the 13th tee which was levelled has been opened for play. 
The social tee on 16th has been levelled and turfed.
Dam Info
We have been advised for some time by our water supplier, Unity Water that they cannot always guarantee a continuous supply of treated water to the course.
They have recommended that we install water storage /dam that would be beneficial for drought proofing the course.
The other advantage of water storage is that we would have a greater volume of water to draw from.
We currently need around 600kl litres to fully water the course at night.
Unfortunately we don’t receive that amount from Unity Water overnight which makes us spread the load over various nights.
This becomes a problem during the hot summer months when all sections require regular water.
Once the new irrigation system is installed which will take our sprinkler numbers from 600 to 800 we will require up to 1 mg litre per night.
John Singleton
Greens Director


21 March 2015

We received 5mm of rain on Monday which gave the course some relief from the hot humid weather we have been receiving lately.

We are sending plug soil samples from affected greens for testing weekly to ensure that we continue on the right track in removing the fungus Brown Patch.

Reports indicate that the treatment we have used to date has been effective in removing the disease from the grass leaf with a reduced presence still evident on the grass roots. 

Greens have been resprayed this week with the recommended chemistry.

In preparation for the coming cooler months we have applied a slow release fertiliser to the tees and treated the fairways with a pre-emergent spray to control winter weeds.

The social 16th tee has been levelled and should be completed next week.

M ore work has been conducted on the cart path from the 15th green to the 16th ladies tee. 

On behalf of the grounds staff I would like to thank Captain John for passing on all the glowing feedback about our course from the Queensland Senior Order of Merit players who participated in the competition on Thursday.

John Singleton - Course Director 

13 March 2015

Mark is taking a well-deserved break and will be returning after Easter.

The brown patches in the greens are being closely monitored and a follow up treatment with the chemical Mancozeb has been applied to prevent fungal diseases.

To ensure we are on the right track a second lot of soil samples have been sent away for testing.

The greens will also be lightly spiked during next week.

In line with our Minor Works Plan, available on the web site, we have completed the levelling of the 7th and 13th tees and have begun works on the Cart path for the Ladies from the 15th green to the ladies 16th tee.

During the week all staff attended training and completed their First Aid CPR course.

Our capital infrastructure program of replacing the course irrigation system is on track.

We have received design documentation for all stages of the project, with the pipeline from the treatment plant to our pump shed, installation of two new pumps and the clearing of the proposed dam site, all completed to plan and within budget.

Soil samples from the dam site have been sent away for analysis to determine if a dam a liner will be required.

John Singleton - Greens Director


Last Friday I changed holes and noted recovery of thin areas (from scarification ) in greens. The weekend that followed was hot and humid. On Monday morning I examined greens and was immediately concerned with yellowing of turf outside thin areas. Samples were sent for examination as fungal disease was suspected. The results confirmed that 'summer brown patch' a complex disease was present. We immediately followed the reports recommendation and applied Rovral; a contact curative fungicide and Bayfidan which is a systemic or preventative fungicide. However we had anticipated such an outbreak and had previously applied Bayfidan (17th of February) to prevent this disease. We have since realized the chemical has been in our chemical store for 3 years so probably provided little protection as chemicals do break down when stored for long periods. I expect the greens to recover quickly and as the effect is only visual our greens continue to putt well.

Preparation work is completed at our dam site, in my opinion Glen of Bowlak Earthmoving and his team did a great job. As reported the actual dam dig is planned later this year.

Our course staff wish to pass on condolences to Daphne's family. Daphne was always fusing about the course spotting weeds and maintaining her gardens, she was quite a character who loved her golf and the course.

I am away on annual leave till Easter, Greens Director John Singleton will take over the weekly report.

Happy Golfing

Mark Gahan