Some people might think that maintaining a golf course during and after the pandemic is not a big deal because there are no complex structures and heavy machinery to take care of. However, while a supermarket or a restaurant can spend a long time being closed and then come back to life simply and quickly, every golf course is a living organism requiring never-ending maintenance even when everything is in lockdown. That’s why during the pandemic, each course developed its own “minimum maintenance regimen” to keep the turf healthy and the whole facility ready for resuming regular operations whenever that would happen.
General guidelines for golf courses included staying compliant with all local orders, such as the social distancing one, and a set of standard procedures: mowing and utilizing plant growth regulators, irrigation, plant protectors and fertilizers, bunkers and equipment maintenance. Everything was reduced to a minimum for more than a year, but now, when the number of fully vaccinated people is rising, and restrictions are being slowly but steadily lifted, many public spaces can operate at full capacity, meaning that golf courses are going to be full again. And the maintenance team should put 100% effort into keeping the visitors happy and healthy while supporting the smooth day-to-day operation of the golf course.
Three Pillars of Golf Course Maintenance: Ball Marks, Bunkers, and Divots
If a film “A Day in the Life of a Golf Course” existed, it’d show us happy players with their golf clubs, having fun on a sunny day. What we usually don’t know is that behind the scenes of every golf course and clubhouse there are workers who work hard inspecting irrigation systems, mowing and treating turf, fixing carts, and more. Here’s a list of regular maintenance activities you should never forget about running a golf course.
- Repair Divots. Whether you manage a low-traffic golf course or a high-traffic one, you have to deal with divots and repair divot damage. Although they appear by accident–players shuffle their feet or cut turf during golf strokes–divots do make players upset because they can ruin the whole game. That’s why checking for and repairing damaged turf should be a routine task for your maintenance team. With a CMMS system in place, you can schedule it as a regular Preventative Maintenance task to have better control of the process.
A Pro Tip: always pay closer attention to the fairway, the greens, and the tee box because divots located in these areas can be critical to the game results.
- Remove Ball Marks. This is one of the easiest and very important golf course maintenance tasks. Every time a golf ball falls on turf, it leaves a mark, making the putting green uneven. This, in turn, often misdirects golfers, who find predictable slope, speed, and putting surface essential to a good game. That’s why a staff member should be assigned specifically to inspect each green with a “ball mark repair tool.”
- Take Care of the Bunkers. Most of the players on your golf course are not professionals, so they often come just to have fun and enjoy spending time outdoors. A big part of this fun is playing in the sand or trying to avoid hitting the sand. To keep bunkers in the proper condition, it’s important to do the following:
- Control the water by ensuring the drainage system works properly
- Rake bunkers to level the sand and refresh the look
- Remember to mow the turf around bunkers
- Monitor the sand level and keep it between 4 and 6 inches
It doesn’t take long for a golf course to turn into a total mess; that’s why golf course maintenance can be a real challenge. The longer the grass is unattended, the harder it is to bring the perfect conditions back. To have better control over pests, insects, and weeds, and to keep golf carts in excellent working condition, try using CMMS. With Maintenance Care, for example, you can easily create and track work orders and build a preventive maintenance schedule to ensure that nothing falls through the cracks. Besides, our system can provide you with actionable insights into which areas can be streamlined and improved and which tasks require immediate attention. Contact us today to book your personal demo and find out more about the Maintenance Care CMMS.