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Warm weather not causing any grief for golf course operators on west coast

Judy Gillam of Corner Brook was the only woman from Newfoundland and Labrador to make the cut at the 2017 Canadian women’s mid-amateur and senior golf championships and play Thursday’s final round at Humber Valley Resort Golf Course.
Judy Gillam of Corner Brook was the only woman from Newfoundland and Labrador to make the cut at the 2017 Canadian women’s mid-amateur and senior golf championships and play Thursday’s final round at Humber Valley Resort Golf Course. - SaltWire Network

A drop of rain was welcomed by golf course operators on the west coast this week, but luckily the scorching heat over the past month or so didn’t do any damage to the greens and fairways.

 “A little bit of rain is good, actually. It has been reasonably dry so things have dried out a bit, but this will help along for sure,” said Gary Oke, director of operations at Humber Valley Resort Golf Course.

Oke said the resort is equipped with a great irrigation system so the course held up pretty well with lots of water on hand and he’s pleased to see the hot weather didn’t have any negative impact on the course.

“We’ve managed to keep everything really green actually. We’ve had no issues at all,” he said, noting that rainfall during the evenings over the past week has helped cool things down.

All is good at Humber River Golf Course in Deer Lake, too.

Humber River Golf Club president Derrick Wagg said there were some challenges when they lost a water pump but it was replaced relatively quickly and the course didn’t suffer any damage as a result.

He believes the course is in the best shape it’s been all summer even though staff had to maintain the greens pretty much throughout the summer. He said staff applied an environmental spray to tackle the dandelions growing out of control about six weeks ago and it did the trick. Watering the greens and fairways early in the morning also seemed to help keep the course in tip-top shape with temperatures hitting the high 20s on a consistent basis over the past month.

“The heat never really created a problem for us,” Wagg said.

There have been a couple of dry spells during the summer at Harmon Seaside Links in Stephenville, but golf captain Paul Hulan believes the course weathered fairly well during the hot weather. He said he’s never seen it so dry that the course had to be shut down and has seen worse conditions in past years.

“There’s years gone by where we’ve had significant droughts and the course has been brown and hard, and that hasn’t really happened this year,” said Hulan, who noted it helps that irrigation is in place on 11 of the 18 fairways at Harmon Seaside Links.

Andrew Margeson, superintendant at Blomidon in Corner Brook, said the course is in great shape and the hot weather hasn’t had any impact on the operation.

“We’re all good. I haven’t actually watered in about a month, Margeson said, noting technology available to the golf club made it possible for him to keep the course in great shape during the dry spell.

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