Golf Course Management

AUG 2014

Golf Course Management magazine is dedicated to advancing the golf course superintendent profession and helping GCSAA members achieve career success.

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78 GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT 08.14 not completely stop the sand from sliding, but you don't get the washouts and soil con - tamination from the faces and walls break- ing down," Rabideau says. "When your drain lines plug up, you have to clean them out, pump out the bunkers, add new soil, add new bunker sand… "It costs more money up front," he adds, "but if you can get past that, the savings in labor and down the road are signifcant." Easley put the cost per square foot in a renovation at $3.93, which he says is more than liners but less than artifcial turf. Along with the cost of local gravel and bunker sand, this fgure includes sand removal, gravel in - stallation, polymer application and sand installation. "It would cost less in new construction," Easley says. "Shoveling sand up a bunker face is the biggest waste in the golf industry," Lemons says. "This method takes that out of the equa - tion forever. It's about draining the whole foor of the bunker, and when you do that, amazing things happen." Boyce and Rabideau were both able to do some of the bunker renovation in-house — removing the bunker sand, putting in the rock and preparing it for the polymer applica - tion, which must be done by one of 16 certi- fed contractors. "There is no temperature minimum on this, just under 15-16 percent moisture in the gravel to spray it properly," Rabideau says. "It's fexible, but rock-hard and durable." Asked how long it takes for a contractor to renovate an average golf course, Lemons says, "We had one contractor do 60,000 square feet in 30 days, but I'd say the average time would be inside 45 days for 60,000 square feet." Lemons says this type of project is a good time to consider engaging an architect to work with the club reviewing bunker locations and shapes. A future for the method Asked if he had advice for superintendents considering upgrading to this type of bunker drainage, Boyce says, "One thing I would do different is take the rock and polymer all the way to the top of the bunker. On our latest bunkers, we took the rock all the way to the native soil/grass interface." Miller says the method "moves water so well that we've had to install frmer sands be - cause they dry out faster." "Usually you have two or three things that you change over the course of several proj - ects," Easley says. "But we haven't changed anything with this — only the sand selection." Meanwhile, Boyce suggests his colleagues think outside the box in regard to applications of the polymer. "There are ways to use the polymer that we haven't done in the past," he says, such as stabilizing the base material at the walk-on, walk-off areas of turf, perhaps in cart-path areas. "If there are ways to incorporate this, it could be pretty cool," he says. Indeed, Fuller and Lemons have patented a process for driveways and parking lots that includes a subsurface of gravel, topdressed with fnely ground rubber and sprayed with ST410 Polymer. "But we're just too busy with golf course work to focus on it," Fuller says. A frequent contributor to GCM, Mark Leslie is a freelance writer based in Monmouth, Maine. He is the author of the companion e-books "Putting a Little Spin on It: The Design's the Thing!" and "Putting a Little Spin on It: The Grooming's the Thing!

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