The long rough areas around the course have had an application of Rescue applied. This is a selective herbicide which targets the thicker more aggressive grasses leaving the finer desirable fescues and native wild flowers. Opening up the sward helps easier ball location while retaining attractive course design and hole definition.
Conventional rough management practises involve many years of repeated cutting and removal of growth to reduce the impact of coarse grasses. The use of Rescue significantly reduces the time taken to achieve the same results. Towards the end of summer these areas will be cut, scarified and collected as part of an annual programme of managing the roughs. This helps to reduce fertility and aid the establishment of the finer wispy grasses and native wild flowers. Following this a further application of Rescue will be applied in early Autumn to control any remaining grasses as Winter approaches.
Finer fescue roughs mean: Faster ball location, better playability, attractive visual appearance, easier management and ecological and environmental benefit.
See the following link which details the environmental project/work set up by Syngenta and the STRI
The heather area between the 8th and 10th holes continue to establish well. The plugs of heather have taken root and are growing and thickening. Encouragingly heather is starting to fill in between the plugs from the seed bank that was exposed by removing the leaf litter, which had built up over many years. At this stage the heather shoots are small and immature and need time to grow into established plants. There remains a percentage of grasses which will be managed and reduced by the application of a herbicide spray, however there is also a native natural mixes of wild flowers within the stands of heather. Indeed this mix, mosaic of heather and fauna mimics that found up on The Ridges and Swinley Forest.
The area to the left of the 3rd carry in front of the tee which was stripped has now regenerated from seed left over from the heather. The key factor in establishing and managing heather is TIME. Similar practises and establishment policies at courses such as Walton Heath and Sunningdale have been successful. Adopting similar methods and practises the heather regeneration areas continue to grow and mature and are where we expected them to be and look at this stage.