Dirt and Grass

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Happy to report we have been underway at Toronto Golf Club for two weeks now and have completed our install on four greens here. Two of the greens have been moved slightly and restored by TDI Golf http://www.tdigolf.com/ using original hand construction techniques from the original construction era. This is an extremely labour intensive project as the greens were rebuilt literally using hand shovel power, as nary a motorized piece of equipment, has made a direct footprint on the pushup surfaces. Project scope includes the Colt 18 closed until May 10, with irrigation, regrassing, bunkers, tees, select fairway improvements, and the installation of our XGD System, all under the watchful, creative eyes of golf architect Dr. Martin Hawtree http://www.hawtree.co.uk/ .

Once the two Dirt greens were close to finish grade we installed XGD in to the dirt surface of these greens with the native dirt backfill. Compaction techniques with a dirt green are slightly altered from our regular routine, as there was no sod to handle and the work was completed quickly as TDI is readying these greens for the resodding process as I write this.

The other two green installs at Toronto has been on our usual Grass greens, hence the blog title. Once again backfilling with the slightly finer textured native dirt, has proven challenging achieving proper compaction results but we now have it down. Mother nature has also been kind to XGD this summer temperature wise, as this cool summer has helped our crews not overheat completing the physical install. We should be happy with our 70 degree temps compared to another XGD crew completing an install in southern Florida at the same time. Temperatures in the 90’s and 100% humidity are the daily struggles of working there in the summer.

TDI Golf has a huge staff on site completing the labour heavy restoration here. Early previews of the bunker designs and edges are extremely positive, and the impact being made to this club will be dramatic, yet still keep the original design intent of H.S. Colt consistent throughout the entire process, especially the gorgeous old greens. Hawtree will have an employee on site throughout the entire project, to keep the shaping moving forward adhering to the tight schedule laid out by the club. Domenic Carere is TDI’s project manager and brings over 12 years of management experience to the project, while lead shaper Ron Hart brings 20 years of expertise as well. From Toronto Golf Club’s perspective grounds superintendent Al Schwemler brings 20 years to the table, and has been instrumental in planning for this project from as far back as five years ago.

All that said, all participating parties are stoked about this unique restoration, and are looking forward to a successful wrap up four months out.

Later, Poor Old Dirt & Grass Farmer

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