Jump to content


Perfectly imperfect: Old stone steps and a succession of dogs...

There are two sets of stone steps at my home in Vermont. One, leading up to the front door, was freshly hewn at a local quarry when we built fifteen years ago. The other, old and trodden, was rescued from an old church about to be torn down. The new steps are all crisp edges and smooth surfaces, appropriate for a formal front entrance, a testament to craftsmanship and quality of manufacture. They are beautiful but at the same time somehow sterile. The old steps are across the drive and lead

Peter McCormick

Peter McCormick in Life

Tales from the Night Waterman (2007)

The following is a reprint from 2007 for a special request. True confession:  I was a teenage night waterman.  It began innocently enough, with an impact Rain Bird fixation.  As a pre-teen golfer and offspring of a pro/super/general manager, my playing time often was compressed to that golden hour just before sunset when the big impact-driven sprinkler heads began to appear on the course. They stood tall, threw water over 100 feet and emitted a soothing, rhythmic noise that could be he

Randy Wilson

Randy Wilson in Storytime

Rockbottum Radio: A New Plan for Golf

In this episode of Rockbottum Radio, a serious discussion breaks out amidst the usual goofiness, pointing out how golf is about to enter The Fourth Turning.  The Rockbottum gang attempts to prepare for the onset of anti-logic perpetrated upon golf by the Rad-Greens and other irrational, oxygen-starved attention seekers.  Join us for the brilliance of Ludell, Momma, Willy and Boof as they duel with a carpetbagger from out west somewhere.

They Seek To Divide Us

There are divisive forces among us, like the Anti-Golf protestors who descended upon a golf course up north in much the same manner as the traffic blockers in London or the farm occupiers in Holland. They portray golf as a bunch of carbon-drenched rich folks still living on plantations.  (Never mind that carbon dioxide only makes up a tiny fraction of the atmosphere and turning 200 acres of turf into free housing would mean even more asphalt hot spots and increased surface runoff.) Gol

The Benefit of Doubt...

As Superintendents & Course Managers we manage a great deal on a daily basis. Conditioning of all sorts, staff issues, weather, member and customer expectations, budgets and financial drama… by times the list can appear endless. But there is one thing above all that, and based on how we manage it, can have a deep impact on not only our operations, but on our overall well being.  It’s the very thing that has the biggest influence on just about every decision and prediction we attempt eve

Paul MacCormack

Paul MacCormack in Wellness

Pruning on a Commercial Scale

Pruning is an essential horticultural task in all grounds management operations. We prune to control growth, promote flowering, improve aesthetics, and remove dead/dying plant parts, etc. Pruning on a small scale is relatively easy and will not usually be disruptive to the overall maintenance operation. But what happens when you are on a 1000+ acre campus and the magnitude of pruning exceeds the labor resources you can throw at it?  Poor plant selection and years of poor pruning

Joseph Fearn

Joseph Fearn in Technique

Rerouting from NZ to a new project in Philadelphia...

I returned to the United States a few months ago and recently took a job as the Old Course Superintendent under Ben Dewan, Director of Grounds, renovating the Cobbs Creek Golf Course in Philadelphia, PA. Even though I still yearn for Ireland and New Zealand, I am thrilled to be involved in a massive undertaking that will significantly influence the city of Philadelphia and the Cobbs community. The course was designed by Hugh Wilson and the Philadelphia School of Golf and Architecture in 191

Techno-Phobia, Back From The Digital Grave

Because a great many TurfNet villagers have never seen "Techno-Phobia", we gave a wad of money to a techno-shaman to resurrect a dead hard drive containing the film.  Dating back to 2006, Techno-Phobia is a collection of harsh predictions for the golf industry that have since come true. We re-released it for several reasons, the first being our reply to golf industry writers--with no experience as superintendents--who doggedly preach the glorious future of tech while simultaneously attempti

What Coffee Does Momma Really Drink?

Rockbottum CC is overrun with unrepentant coffee snobs.  Momma, Willy, and Ludell drink only one brand of coffee and only through a stainless steel French Press.  Exactly what coffee Momma buys has been classified for years, but recent security leaks threaten to reveal our dark secret to the unwashed public, especially those consumers of instant, freeze -dried and that stuff that came in C-Rations. To get ahead of the story, we released this short film, before Buddy could put his spin

They Want Their Clutter Back

In this short film, Willy of Rockbottum reveals the real reason you might not want to skip pulling cores this year.  Also, Rockbottum News will avoid controversy this summer and stick to kinder, gentler subjects like . . . those pro tour cupcakes, the ugly rumors that golfers are demanding the return of tee clutter, and the truth behind the uptick in golf course fightin' and brawlin' and harsh language.  

Who are you?

The identity of the Greenkeeper has always been one of adaptation and evolution. From Old Tom Morris, to Bill Murray’s lovable Caddyshack character, Carl Spackler, to our present day incarnation, Superintendents and Course Managers have moved out of the back shed into the boardroom. Our roles within the structure of our clubs and courses have grown over the years and in many cases seen us become key players in the overall vision within our properties. Within the framework of this evolution,


Nick Colombo joins us as our 2023 Greenkeeping, the Next Generation intern, this year in video format from Sentosa Golf Club in Singapore. Nick will be at Sentosa for six months under the auspices of The Ohio Program and Mike O'Keeffe. A native of Columbus, Ohio, Nick is a recent graduate of Ohio State ATI in Wooster, OH, where he was president of the Turf Club. Prior to attending ATI, Nick worked on the renovation of Muirfield Village Golf Club and at Old Elm Club. Nick is an avid hockey f

Got Rock Trouble?

Rock trouble on the golf course can be a real challenge.  From granite outcroppings in the fairways to boulders in the wrong place, rock can be . . . hard.  On several courses near Stone Mountain, Georgia, we battled turf-killing, reel-dinging, golf ball flinging, tine-breaking, PVC-rubbing rock for decades.  The rock always won. Even the giant excavators were impotent when facing big, hard rock.  Oh, sure, we tried dynamite, but golf course neighbors had a tendency to complain and call the

  • Create New...