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The Plant as a Teacher

I love reading Frank Rossi's blog.   I don't always agree, but I love the way he invokes thinking and the way he passionately grabs information and makes total slaw out of it. It's an immaculate process.   His latest blog post on TurfNet.com is just such proof. And for the record, I would love to have been the guy carrying the camera cases for these two so they could invoke the Ancient Italian Art of Talking With Hands. I know Dan Dinelli. I spent a day with him a few years back and my head

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

 

Agriculture: A History of Time

Farming is a way of life that teaches agronomy practices, environmental conservation, and the care of animals. Ever since mankind domesticated animals and settled down we have been using the land to grow and cultivate food for all to eat. Ireland is laden with agriculture. Sometimes it seems that that is all you see, fields and fields of crops for various uses. At the Johnstown Castle, in Co. Wexford, there is the Irish Agricultural Museum. Taking you back in time to ages of horses and plows to

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

The Greatest Job

It's a surreal feeling in the mornings on a golf course seeing the steam rise off the grass as the morning sun rises higher in the sky while workers move efficiently around the course mowing the grass with great precision. I love golf course work. The putting course had a great deal of work done to it all week. Before I worked on the putting course  in the mornings I changed cups and I can say that I was quicker in cutting the cups this time as compared to the last time. Practice definitely make

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Never Assume Confidentiality

The issue of 'confidentiality' discourages many employed superintendents from seeking new jobs because they are fearful of putting their present jobs at risk any time they apply for a job despite submitting their applications on a 'confidential' basis. And rightfully so! Where does the problem originate?   The blame for disclosure does not generally lie within the various search committees because they are consistently made up of private sector business people used to routinely working with an

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

Rethink Your Lengthy Portfolio

Rethink Your Lengthy Portfolio

The following information pertains to portfolios as documents like a PDF, Word file, or other printable file type or digital file that must be scrolled like a document. This does not include online portfolios on websites. After years of work looking over and/or building superintendent portfolios and the results produced, one item consistently appears in feedback from hiring personnel on DIY portfolios: The content is too long! I've written before about keeping your resume as sh

Matt Leverich

Matt Leverich

 

Rockbottum: Ten Years From Now

The loudest voice in my head is MGP, or The Mad Golf Prophet.   Occasionally he forces his way to my frontal lobe, demanding that I deliver his current prediction or he will do something crazy.  As usual, I foolishly ignored him and then watched in horror as he made good on his threat.    MGP ruthlessly terrorized a foursome of Foot-Golfers by collapsing on the turf, writhing in agony and clutching clearly undamaged body parts.    After a few seconds of near-death, MGP suddenly hopped up a

Randy Wilson

Randy Wilson

 

Irish National Heritage Park, Sod Work, Graiguenamanagh

Digging deeper into Irish history I visited the Irish National Heritage Park located in Ferrycarrig, Co. Wexford. Through the tour Catherine, Carlos, and I saw Ireland be born from the Middle Stone Age over 9,000 years ago to Vikings and Normans. The most interesting part was to see the improvement in the living quarters as time progressed. To see the way people used to live was amazing. Imagine a world where your next meal is all you think about. This makes the magnificent tombs made by them is

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

More Questions than Answers

Got a chance this week for a chat (AKA banter, debate, even argument) with my old pal Dan Dinelli. Anyone in this business with even the slightest interest in a broader environmental perspective on golf turf management knows Dan. I know him as a thoughtful, passionate steward of a piece of land (and exceptionally fine turf) that happens to be a great old country club on the north shore of Chicago. As usual our chat left me with more questions than answers.   The topic this time was Bacterial E

Frank Rossi

Frank Rossi

 

Belated Intoduction

2 months I have been in Ireland and I realize I have not introduced myself. Sorry, but here I go. I am Peter Braun Jr, a recent graduate of The Ohio State University. My story starts back in 2009. At the end of my Junior year of high school I had to start thinking about college. While I had grown up working in agriculture on dairy farms and raised animals at my family's house I knew I did not want to be a dairy farmer. After a simple internet search of sports and the outdoors I came across turfg

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Submit job applications electronically...

Why submit job applications via the hard copy equivalent of the 'pony express' when electronic service is available? The answer is that applicants wouldn't if they wanted to maximize their job application opportunities.   Yet, in this high tech age of the Internet, roughly 90% of golf course superintendents are submitting hard copy job applications via the U.S. Mail. This doesn't make sense because submitting job applications electronically provides the following unique advantages: Immediate

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

 

Censored '09 TN News Video Resurfaces!

We intentionally buried this news program deep in the dungeon vault after numerous threats from committee members and our accountant, but we have experienced a sudden inexplicable desire to "tell it all, brethren, tell it all".   Or it could be the effects of a week of fly-fishing in the NC mountains, drinking an exquisite beer called "Dirt Wolf" and our new film isn't ready yet.      

Randy Wilson

Randy Wilson

 

A Ride on the Dunbrody

During the late 1840s Ireland was struck by potato blight causing the potato famine. The Irish were devastated as their main crop was being wiped out and hunger spread all over. Thus emigration to America, Canada, Australia amoung others gave the Irish a chance to start over. To get to these countries the Irish boarded ships bound for the promise land.     The Dunbrody, sailing from New Ross, was one of these ships. Originally built as a cargo ship in Quebec, she started taking passengers

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Holiday Weekend

Yesterday was the celebration of America's Independence, but I had to work and it rained almost all day. I heard back home the weather was great following some crazy storms in the past week. Still a lot of work was finished at Mt. Juliet this past week.    Core aeration and topdressing was done to a couple of tee boxes per hole. This is a necessary cultural practice to remove thatch, improve drainage, and increase air to the roots. At Mt. Juliet we use a Ryan aerator and on the tees a core cul

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

A good chat...

I had one of those rare conversations with a good friend this past week. It was the kind of chat that leaves you feeling spent afterwards, but it was worth it in so many ways. Our talk wasn't one of surface banter that we as a culture so often engage in. You know the way most of us converse most of the time; both parties say lots of words, but in the end don't really say much at all. Nope, our conversation was of a different breed, and is one that we all need to be having with our friends and fa

Paul MacCormack

Paul MacCormack

 

Don’t Waste Your Cover Letter

Traditionally, golf course superintendents have used the cover letter when applying for jobs in a very perfunctory manner; i.e.- to make search committees aware of their candidacy and to ask for an interview - little more.   This superficial use of cover letters negates candidates' foremost opportunity to take the initiative throughout the application process...   ....which is what the job application process should be all about; i.e., taking the initiative throughout the entire job applicat

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

 

Summer's Heat

It has been a week and a half since the Irish Open so the excitement of tournament work is gone, but work goes on. Following the beautiful week at Fota Island the weather has been up and down. A few days of sunny, warm weather then a few rain soaked days. As the weather keeps getting better it is important for people to protect themselves from the sun. Wearing a hat or putting on sunscreen is a great way to reduce the amount of rays that come into contact with your skin. People who work outdoors

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Deep thinking, re-thinking, and reactive agronomy

"The world as we have created, it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking." - Albert Einstein   I want to thank the hundreds of people who, however it worked for them, supported me as I cared for my mom during the end of her life. True earning of karma. And of course there are the few who had to be opportunists for criticism. Oh well. The many outweigh the few. And I hope no one finds themselves in the position I found myself.   For a time, there wasn

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

 

Stress-Free Job Interviews... Guaranteed!

The interview process between a job-seeking candidate and a search committee can be one of the most inefficient communication exchanges known to man.   The reality is that qualified but interview-inexperienced candidates often do not present themselves well in this typically tense and highly structured sit-around-the-table interview format. Is there a better interview format that would benefit candidates? Fortunately, there is; for example:   A candidate would request a more informal (stress

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

Reminder for cover letters...

Reminder for cover letters...

Over the last several weeks it seems that quite a few job opportunities have come along across the country and I have been receiving many requests on how to handle cover letters for these opportunities. So for those out there that are interested, here is a point-by-point tutorial on crafting a cover letter to your advantage that I wrote last year as a solid reminder heading into your next opportunity. There are countless articles and tips out there about writing an effective cover letter ac

Matt Leverich

Matt Leverich

 

Irish Open: Day 7 and Closing Remarks

What a week! I could not have asked for a better week to volunteer for the Irish Open. Great weather, good golf, and amazing people. I will surly miss the tournament and the people. I thank everyone who made this possible. Connor O'Driscoll and Simon O'Hara made it an enjoyable week and are some of the most kept together people I have met. Also, thanks to Aidan O'Hara and Robbie at Mt. Juliet for allowing me to take the time off to experience the wonders of a championship.   Connor, Pat, Mys

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Irish Open: Day 6

My time at the Irish Open has been fantastic. Today was a typical tournament day. Mowed greens in the morning, but since the golf was a one tee start, as opposed to a two tee start in previous day, we were able to change up the mowing routes a bit. Pat and I were changed from putting green, 1, 7, 8 to putting green, 9, 11,14. A nice route that put us on a different part of the course down in the deerpark section for number 11. Everything ran smoothly and golf kicked off bright and early at 6:30.

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Irish Open: Day 5

The tournament is shaping up nicely. After 2 rounds of golf everyone keeps talking about how nice the course and weather is. I have to agree. Great weather brings in more people thus the spectacular job the maintenance staff does is seen by many more people and looks amazing on the television. Morning jobs have been the same for the 40 staff and volunteers for the past 3 days. Each day the work gets done faster. We must be more efficient and our tasks. For Pat and I, we mowed our greens about 15

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

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