Golf Course Management

MAY 2018

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

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38 GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT 05.18 propriate) replacement, paying attention to the 10 percent rule (no more than 10 per - cent of a given tree species on the course) will promote diversity and greater resistance to pests. Again, with a tip of the cap and a nod to the course master plan, taking a step back to ask the question "Trees or no trees or some trees?" is prudent. It's easy to drift from the original intentions of the combined wisdom of the golf course builder and architect by installing trees here and there, or simply for - getting that small trees grow into big ones and create unintended consequences, both positive and negative. Classic guidance model In addition to the tenets above, a clas- sic guidance model adapted with extensive input from Steve Rodie — a University of Nebraska at Omaha biology professor and member of the American Society of Land - scape Architects — is very helpful, both in terms of removal and replacement options as well as creating documentation and sup - port for convincing stakeholders that ac- tion is necessary. e following seven-step circular approach is thorough, allowing for input from sources that may not have been immediately apparent. If it looks or sounds vaguely familiar, it's likely because you may have used parts of it as you processed the loss of a loved one, the aftermath of a house fire, totaling your car, being robbed, or moving your parents into assisted living. e main action is listed first, followed by typical ex - amples of specific situations. 1. Accept the situation. It is what it is. at is, the tree is here, in poor condition, casting heavy shade on the No. 3 green. 2. Analyze facts and feelings. e turf is thinning, golfers are tripping on the sur - face roots, and we're getting lots of com- plaints from green committee members. 3. Define goals and objectives. Create and maintain healthy and functional turf, renovate, and make changes as neces - sary. 4. Generate ideas to achieve goals and ob - jectives. Remove three trees by the No. 4 tee, install fans, reseed. 5. Select the best ideas or combination of ideas, which could be based on stake - holder input and colleagues' suggestions. 6. Implement proposed actions. A step-by- step approach is usually best. 7. Evaluate the performance or result of implementation. en go back to step one and start again. Benefits of trees Before going rogue and endorsing whole- sale cutting of every woody plant on the course, it's sensible to remind ourselves of the many benefits of trees in a golfscape. In addi - tion to the environmental impacts of oxygen production, carbon sequestration, cooling ef - fects, energy cost reductions and crime dis- couragement, trees solve many golf-centric problems and provide a significant amenity. e screening of undesirable views and definition of property lines and fairways are important functions, as is the physical bar - rier between fairways or between fairways Top: Storm-damage cleanup can be expensive and time consuming for golf courses. Taking a closer look at the negative aspects of trees on a golf course pays dividends. Photos courtesy of John C. Fech Right: Placement is an important consideration in the tree removal decision-making process. Baldcy - press, for example, has an extensive root system, often referred to as "knees," that protrudes 1 to 2 feet above ground — a great choice for out of bounds or rough areas but not so good for high-traffic sites.

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