My Trip to the US Open at Merion Golf Club

 In Classic Golf Architecture, Golf Course Capital Improvements, Golf Drainage, Golf Infrastructure Improvements, Greens Drainage, Hugh Wilson, Soil Gas Exchange, USGA, William S. Flynn

I am happy to be home after a hectic few days of work and play at the US Open, just outside of Philadelphia, PA. XGD drained all of the greens on the East Course at Merion Golf Club over a 3 year period between 2008-2011. As you can see from the picture below shortly after an early spring install on the diabolical fifth green sans wicker:

This picture is taken well in to the approach where the laterals were extended out of the green and into a mainline some 150′ out in front of the greenpad and out in to the right sidehill which was very wet before the subsurface drainage system was installed.
While at Merion for a few days I ran in to lots of great people in the turf industry and spent a little time with Matt Shaffer.
 I asked Matt how many times he thought the greens reached saturation point and completely flushed out?
Matt said at least three times during the downpours on Friday and Saturday…

That is a ton of soil gas purges or exchanges and must account for the rate of grass growth they are experiencing now, not just on the greens, but in fairways and roughs too.

I found it interesting to note that every inch of Merion drains unbelievably well. I might reason it out as the physical property has natural gentle slopes that are both ideal for tricky fairways and lies, but more importantly, naturally directing excess surface water off of the playing areas. That subsoil at Merion is typical PA red clay. Not ideal, but the surface drainage contours are a perfect marriage for this ultimate golf venue.

So, keep battering the professionals this weekend Merion. Just as you were designed to do when you opened the gates back in 1912.

Reach out to us at XGD, in case we could get you some short, or long term budget numbers for your next greens, fairway, and bunker capital improvement plan.

Enjoy the golf, Poor Old Dirt & Grass Farmer

Recent Posts
Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

Start typing and press Enter to search