There are 32 greens totaling 6.4 acres at Tara Iti, all comprised of fine fescue grasses. As mentioned in my previous blogs, working with all fine fescue is new to me. The fescue greens provide excellent playing conditions for the membership and guests. Even after aerification, Brian likes to say, "It won't win any beauty competition, but it sure plays well.”
Texture of fescue greens after overseeding.
The greens are sculpted from the native dune sand from around the prope
In this short film — originally produced six years ago — Rockbottum CC predicted "The Reset", long before Klaus and his cronies went public with their version. In Part One of Skeletal Golf Theory 101, we took a hard look at the "business" of golf. We did not rely on data, just anecdotal analysis gathered over 50+ years in all facets of the industry.
As our economy reacts to the latest spending spree carried out by politicians, perhaps it's time to study SGT 101.
You just never know.
This week we received about six inches of rain, four inches of that coming within a few hours on Friday.
Monday started the week off being dry and windy. When using a moisture meter, the greens were reading 4-5% after the weekend. It would be scary if they were bentgrass greens, but since we have fescue, they have good tolerance to heat and lack of moisture at the top three inches but there is plenty of moisture below that.
With the dry and windy weather, the sand from the bunkers was
Spring aerification is finished and I had Monday and Tuesday off , allowing me to explore New Zealand. Typically I would not have weekdays off, but I swapped a weekend. Our crew is split into three teams to work alternating weekends.
On Monday, I went north to the Waipoua Forest to visit the largest known living kauri (Agathis australis) tree, named Tāne Mahuta (Lord of the Forest). Standing about 150' high and with a girth of about 50', it is named for Tāne, the Māori god of forests and b
Rockbottum Radio presents our annual Halloween broadcast, with not one, but three spooky golf stories.
These stories are full of scary messages and at least one real good golf course management tip, so send out the crew, close the office door and settle in for some golf trauma as only Rockbottum CC can share.
With it being only the second week here at Tara Iti many things were going on, including reshaping and seeding a private green and aerification throughout the course.
Me with assistant Hayden Stuthridge, assistant Dylan Griffin, and Hamish Harding.
Angela Moser, who works with Renaissance Golf, shaped the private green a while back. I did not see the green shaping, but I added some final touches: leveling out sand-blown areas and picking up rocks. With all debris cleaned
After finishing up my internship at Adare Manor in Ireland, I started my new adventure at Tara Iti Golf Club in Mangawhai, New Zealand a week ago. It still amazes me that I was in Ireland a week and a half ago, and now I'm now a half a world away in New Zealand. Since Adare Manor is a parkland course, Tara Iti is the first links course I have ever worked at. there are many new things for me that I will introduce through the upcoming blogs.
Tara Iti is the first links course I've
Going on a week-long road trip is a great way to wind up my stay in Ireland. After finishing up my internship at Adare Manor last week, I spent this week traveling around the Wild Atlantic Way with my parents and brother.
I was able to get my parents an overnight stay at the Manor. We then made our way to Dick Mack's pub, where I got a photo with Finn MacDonnell, a cousin of Alan MacDonnell, the superintendent at Adare Manor Resort.
Before I left Adare
When the Visigoths, Ostrogoths, Huns, and Norsemen invaded, they typically came during the day. But the Golf Vandals are an entirely different bunch. A cowardly, mindless tribe, the Golf Vandals favor the cover of night. Agitated by their ever present hand-screens, they can quickly become hysterical when faced with reality.
You can use techno-wizardry to neutralize the GV, but remember: While they are easily frightened, they will return in greater numbers.
NOTE: The counter-measu
Just like that, my time at Adare Manor has ended. And I am beyond grateful to the team for making it an unforgettable internship for me.
There were many aspects to this internship that made it successful. The onsite housing was only a short 3-minute walk to work and a 10-minute walk off-site to the store, pubs, and bus stop. Adare Manor also allows staff to utilize some of the amenities they provide to the members, like yoga on Fridays and Sundays, access to the paddle courts on Tuesdays, a
Before the start of my daily shift, I always eat a bowl of cereal from the canteen at Adare Manor, the best lunchroom I have ever seen. Morning options include cereal, bread, meats to make a sandwich, and fruit. There's coffee and an espresso machine if one is so inclined. Although many varieties of cereal are on offer, I always stick with Coco Puffs.
A power breakfast to begin a great day.
A stomach full of cereal and perfect dew coverage m
One of the most brilliant Rockbottum films ever produced was "The Brass Monkey Alert", shot somewhere around 13 years ago. Suppressed by powerful forces in golf, the film was banished to the cold darkness of the censored TN film vault, along with that film we made about a magazine.
But now, emboldened by modern times and a crusty "I don't care anymore" attitude that comes from hitting a certain age, we are unleashing The Brass Monkey once again. Watch to the end to learn some important ti
I used to keep honey bees at home and always found them fascinating to own and handle. The bees I owned were called Italian bees. They were bright yellow and very gentle. When I found out Adare holds bees, I asked to see their hives. This week I was invited to harvest the honey.
My Italian bees and the queen with a white dot to make her easier to find.
The honey bees on the Adare site are called Northern dark bees and are native to Ireland. These bees are much darker than
It is student move-in time here at the University of Kansas... a great time for our Grounds Crew and for the university community overall. 5,000 students returning to campus is a big deal. Our team begins focusing on residential areas in the weeks preceding in order to put our best foot forward. Making the campus landscape look good is a labor of love benefitting our campus community, but also benefiting our team. Finding satisfaction in these moments can provide a deep sense of accomplishment
The weekends for me are the times I travel. I can do this because I either have the full days off or I work in the mornings and leave around 11 am after finishing my morning assignments.
On Saturday, August 27th I headed to Dublin after completing the morning assignments. I got on a Dublin Coach bus for the three-hour bus ride north. to meet up with Jon Kiger, who had scored tickets for the Nebraska vs. Northwestern college football game in the Aviva Stadium. The Aviva normally hosts socce
During my time in Ireland I’ve tried to observe and understand the things that are done similarly and differently to what I’ve seen and done in the States. The maintenance of the equipment seems very similar to what I’ve experienced back home.
Like most courses, the mechanics are a vital part of the Adare Greenkeeping Team. Jonathan "Jonny" Coleman is the head mechanic and has been a mechanic for 20 years. Tom Normoyle started in 2003, and Maurice Hennessy began in January of 2022. Tyler Mc
In the "And Now For Something Completely Different" category--because it's unhealthy to obsess on the digital hysteria currently being poured into our skulls--here is some comedy.
We went deep into the Rockbottum Vault and extracted a film that we've kept hidden for many years. If you are unable to laugh at this, you don't need a doctor, just delete Tikkity-Tok, Space-Book, Tweety, and stop carrying that phone around like it's some kind of life support system.
Aeration week is here, with the course closed from Tuesday until Saturday. The crew from Siems Turfgrass/DryJect UK arrived at Adare on Tuesday afternoon and we got to work by running two DryJect machines that day and three on Wednesday and Thursday. Each machine required 4-5 greenkeepers loading the sand into it.
DryJect was chosen for the greens for the near-instant playability and to not interfere with the busy season. We also did not need to pull cores at the moment because organ
If you live in the northeastern part of the US or in eastern Canada as I do, you are very likely smack dab in the midst of what can be termed the burn out season. You spent the spring preparing your facility for the onslaught of golfers and now with the excitement of opening day a distant memory, both you and your team are most likely suffering from the cumulative effects of the grind.
The feeling of fatigue which supers and their employees experience at this stage of the season can be ove
In this episode of Rockbottum Radio, Rockbottum CC's latest hire prefers to work from home, inflation takes a toll on course operations, and RW shifts his customer emphasis from thrifty golfers to the elite class.
A run-in with royalty leads RW to wonder how we got here.
A great way to explore Ireland and learn about its incredible history is to take walking tours, and I did exactly that. I was recently in Kinsale and Waterford with Jon Kiger, who set me up with two unique tours. Dermot Ryan was our tour guide in Kinsale, down on the southern coast of Ireland and home of the famed Old Head Golf Links. Our Waterford tour was led by Jack Burtchaell. What was nice about both tours was that all you had to do was call in advance, and they would give a location to mee
Eighty-two thousand fans packed Croke Park in Dublin for the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Final between Limerick and Kilkenny on Sunday the 17th of July. The atmosphere alone was insane, but made more intense from a heatwave of temperatures as high as 84 F that day.
The sport of hurling has been played in some form in Ireland for hundreds of years. The GAA (Gaelic Athletic Association) was established to formalize the game in 1884. To this day it remains an amateur sport. The players an