Kent’s Korner – Protect the Rim

Golf can be one of the most frustrating but satisfying games you can imagine. Billions of dollars are spent annually attempting to put a small white ball in a round hole. At Colleton River Club, the Agronomy team changes the hole locations daily on both courses to provide variety, enhance the golf experience, and to help ensure that well struck putts reach their intended destination. The elusive finishing point on each green is a cup that measures a mere 4.25″ in diameter. During hole changing procedures, an Agronomy team member paces off the green to identify the new pin location, cuts the hole, and recesses the cup 1″ below the green’s surface. Once the cup is set, the final step includes an application of paint around the inner rim of the hole. This paint, or “hole-in-white” application, helps clearly identify the target for the player and protects the integrity of the cup.
 
The USGA and the R&A (The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews) have recently adopted a new rule 13.2 a-1, Leaving Flagstick in Hole. This allows a player the option to make a stroke with the flagstick left in the hole so that it is possible for the ball in motion to hit the flagstick without penalty. If you opt to take this approach, after finishing each hole, please take care not to disrupt the hole when retrieving your ball. Contact with the painted inner lip or damage to the edge of the hole breaks down the integrity of the hole and can impact your fellow competitors. Thank you for taking care so that everyone can enjoy the golf experience.

Colleton’s Own Kevin King Takes SCGA Senior Championship

61st SCGA Senior Championship
Callawassie Island Club – Dogwood/Magnolia
Callawassie Island, SC
May 13-15, 2019

Kevin King of Bluffton shot a final round score of two over par 74 to capture his first SCGA Senior Championship victory with a three day total of one under par 215 at the Callawassie Island Club in Callawassie Island, SC.

King began his day with a four shot lead, but with a plethora of some the best senior amateur golfers in the
State of South Carolina, he knew that he had to play great golf to capture a victory. As the wind whipped around much of Callawassie Island throughout the day, King stayed steady on the Dogwood (front) course with seven pars on the first seven holes, adding a birdie on the Par 3 – 168-yard eighth hole, and finishing the ninth hole with a bogey. Heading to the Magnolia (back) nine, King’s lead was at a 5 shot advantage. With a combination of four pars, two birdies, two bogeys, and a triple bogey on the extremely tough Par 4 – 384-yard 18th Hole, King was able to fend off the 2018 SCGA Senior Champion, Rich Weston of Pawleys Island, by one stroke to claim the 2019 SCGA Senior Championship.

Finishing in solo third place was Taylors native Duff Wagner who finished with a three-day total of 221. Eddie Hargett (Blythewood) finished in fourth place after completing his final round with a score of 75 and a tournament total of 222. Full Results

Kent’s Korner – Plugs of Progress

Aeration is arguably the dirtiest word in golf. The mere sound of the term makes both members and superintendents cringe. Just when the greens, tees, and fairways seem like they are at their best, the golf course maintenance team pulls plugs and jeopardizes the prized conditions everyone desires. This temporary inconvenience is created not to aggravate golfers or disrupt playability, but to improve and sustain good playing conditions. Among the many benefits of aeration are improved water infiltration, dilution of thatch, enhanced soil gas exchange, and deeper rooting. Good aeration practices are the cornerstone of championship conditions and are essential to the long-term vitality of great greens. Unlike courses in the Northeast and Midwest, the warm season turf varieties found throughout the Lowcountry benefit from summer aeration.

Both of the courses at Colleton River Club will be aerated twice this summer. The first of these planned cultural practices will begin on the Dye Course on Wednesday, May 29. The Nicklaus Course will follow three weeks later, on Tuesday, June 18. Please see the aeration schedule below that outlines our summer cultivations and plan accordingly. We apologize for this temporary inconvenience, but please understand sound cultural practices are paramount to the goal of sustaining good playing conditions.

Colleton River Club Aeration Schedule
Dye Course Aeration
May 29 – June 7
Nicklaus Course Aeration
June 18 – June 30
Dye Course Aeration
July 23 – Aug 4
Nicklaus Course Aeration
Aug 13 – Aug 26

Kent’s Korner-Birdies and Eagles

May is one of the driest months of the year in the Lowcountry and offers plenty of opportunity to enjoy the course before the summer heat and rains return. If you find yourself short of birdies and eagles on the course, you may consider joining the growing list of bird enthusiasts in the community, including the Colleton River Birding Club. (Contact Karen Anderson: 203.451.5882 or Stephen Dickson: 414.243.1880.)
Birding provides many rewards and offers an opportunity to enjoy nature and heighten your sense of awareness. Birding engages your power of observation, expands your mind, and deepens your listening skills. Consider spending an afternoon locating and documenting some of our resident birds. See how many different birds you can identify using this helpful link https://www.allaboutbirds.org/. While out and about in the community, be sure to enjoy any number of Bluebirds dashing about gathering insects for their newly hatched chicks. Keep an eye out for the red flash of a Cardinal or a Scarlet Tanager. Consider spending a morning trying to get a glimpse of a Turkey meandering through the understory on Whitehall Drive looking for seeds or the Barred Owl returning to roost after a successful hunt. Recently, Red-tailed Hawks have been active on the Borland in the afternoons, while Ospreys can be seen working the marshes looking for fish. The newest member of our Bald Eagle family is creating quite a stir on Inverness Drive as he stretches his new wings despite the objections of numerous black birds and neighboring Crows. Expect another great month of golf at Colleton River Club, and take time to enjoy the natural beauty your wonderful Club has to offer.

The young Bald Eagle has recently fledged and is out of the nest.

Kent’s Korner-Going Vertical

The onset of warmer weather conditions allows us the opportunity to condition the greens more aggressively for upcoming events. If you’ve played in the past few days, you may notice remnants from recent surface-maintenance treatments on the greens. The fine lines evident on the putting surfaces are a result of recent verticutting/grooming procedures. Rather than cutting on a horizontal plane like a normal mower, these cutting units rotate vertically into the turf surface. Set slightly below the height of cut, these blades penetrate the turf severing stolons (plant shoots along the surface) and thinning the leaf canopy. Following the grooming, we topdress the greens to fill any voids and further smooth the surface. These cultivation techniques optimize putting quality, reduce grain, promote an upright growth habit, alleviate spongy surface conditions, and enhance surface smoothness. Immediately following this process, the greens may slow down slightly and appear scarred from the disruption to the surface. Approximately seven to ten days following the process, the greens will be smoother, faster, and firmer.

Ultra-dwarf bermudagrasses make excellent putting greens because they have been bred for their dense, fine leaf texture, and their ability to tolerate low mowing heights. Although we continue to stretch the limits of the grass, it is important to recognize that the natural growth pattern of bermudagrass is to spread and grow laterally. Periodic vertical mowing to further promote dense upright turf is an important part of getting the most out of our grass.

Play for P.I.N.K 2019

Colleton River Club is pleased to announce that we raised over $34,000 in our annual March Play for P.I.N.K. week. Bridge, Canasta, tennis, and golf events were held throughout the community as well as a silent auction and dinner to help raise funds for the worthy cause.

To speed advances in breast cancer detection, treatment and survivorship, Play for P.I.N.K. (Prevention, Immediate Diagnosis, New Technology, Knowledge) supports thousands of volunteers nationwide as they raise funds for research through sporting and lifestyle events. Their collective efforts raise $4.75 million annually — and 100% of that goes to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

Colleton River Club looks forward to hosting this annual event that aids improving outcomes and uncovering new approaches to this complex, challenging disease. President, Myra J. Biblowit states “Play for P.I.N.K.’s continued support is critical to the grant-making capability of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. We are extremely proud of our partnership and indebted to all that support us and believe in the cause.”

“We appreciate those who donated, worked and played, making Play for P.I.N.K. an incredible success,” said Tim Bakels, General Manager of Colleton River Club. “Many months of planning by CRC committee members and staff went into ensuring a smooth operation, and as usual the Members participation was excellent.”

Kent’s Korner-Dog Days

Based on the boisterous barks and number of chewed tennis balls, the newest Colleton River Club amenity, the Dog Park, has been a rousing success. In fact, the park has quickly become “the place to be” as a social gathering spot for members and their four-legged friends. The park offers a mix of sun and shade to both relax and provide ample room to stretch your legs without the encumbrance of leashes. For new and long-time members who love dogs, the park offers a chance to meet and greet fellow members with common interests while discovering the intricacies and personalities of different breeds of dogs.

In fact, we talked to Mr. Tom Eagan and his dog, Bosco, members since 2017, who raved, “We try to use the park every morning and join as many as twenty other friends at 4:00 each afternoon.” Mr. Eagan went on to say, “While frequenting the park, we have met several new friends,” and though Bosco is only part Rhodesian Ridgeback, he has been comfortable with all the breeds he meets. As the news spreads and the landscape matures, we expect the Dog Park to only get better.

While the park is open from dawn to dusk seven days a week, our teams will be conducting normal weekly maintenance on Tuesday mornings before 10:00 a.m. Out of courtesy to fellow members and our staff, please repair your own holes with divot mix provided in the wine barrel immediately to the right of the entrance gate. Thank you for regularly visiting the park and your efforts to make it the best it can be.

Colleton River Collegiate 2019

The 7th annual Colleton Collegiate, taking place over 2 days on the Dye (March 4th and 5th) was another successful tournament, both on and off the course. We welcomed a record number of teams, 14 this year including the Michigan State
host team to the course.

The tournament was founded by Member Al Thiess out of his love for the game, both as a member of the Michigan State golf team and as an Alumni. The love for the event is carried on by his wife Willa Thiess and a devoted group of nearly 60 Members that were integral in all aspects of the event.
 
There is an air of camaraderie that is felt between the schools, their players, and Colleton Members. A tournament where some of the best schools in the sport compete in a collaborative family atmosphere. Yet another example of how Colleton Members’ connectivity to each other and visitors create one-of-a-kind experiences that keep folks…and golf teams…coming back time and again!

Click Here for a Gallery from the Event.

Kent’s Korner-Curbside Appeal

If you are new to the Lowcountry, you may be surprised by the many options available when selecting grass for your lawn. Unlike the bluegrass or tall fescue, you may be accustomed to, the grasses used in Bluffton are all warm season varieties. These grasses require a minimum of six hours of sunlight and will experience varying degrees of winter dormancy. Additionally, they normally can’t be seeded but are established vegetatively (spread using plant parts). When selecting a turf species, consider your lawn’s microclimate, the level of maintenance you desire, and how you intend to use your lawn. The following is a brief description of the five major grasses in our area to help make your decision a little easier.

Bermudagrass is the primary turf species found on both of our golf courses. Under full sun conditions, Bermudagrass is arguably the most resilient turf available. Under intensive maintenance, it produces a thick blue-green canopy that spreads aggressively and tolerates heavy traffic, while also resisting most disease and insect pests. In fact, the fairways on both courses have only been spot treated with fungicide once in the past two years. Despite these advantages, Bermudagrass is rarely used on home lawns in our community because it doesn’t perform well in shade.

Centipede grass is referred to as “graveyard” grass because it is low maintenance and is the least expensive turf to maintain. It is the primary turf species found throughout the Dye course high roughs and does best under low fertility situations. Centipede tolerates minor shade but prefers acidic soil conditions and does not perform well under traffic.

St. Augustine grass is the most shade-tolerant warm-season grass, although it still requires six hours of sunlight to thrive. Under high maintenance, it has wide succulent leaves and produces a moderately dense turf canopy. St. Augustine performs best with abundant fertility and water but is very susceptible to winter injury and is extremely sensitive to both insects and disease. These issues make St. Augustine one of the more expensive home lawn options in our area.

Empire Zoysia grass is the workhorse of Lowcountry lawn grasses. It is well adapted to a variety of environmental conditions and produces a dense apple green lawn. While it is slightly less shade tolerant than St. Augustine, it requires less intense maintenance, does well under modest fertility, is drought tolerant, has good salt tolerance, recuperates aggressively from injury, and is normally both insect and disease resistant. If heavy shade is not a problem, Empire Zoysia is a reliable performer throughout the Lowcountry.

Zeon Zoysia and Zorro Zoysia grasses are high density varieties that are close relatives to Empire Zoysia. They have many of the same advantages as Empire, but they require more maintenance and have slightly better shade tolerance than the wider-leafed Zoysia grasses. These grasses prefer a lower mowing-height and require periodic dethatching to prevent problems associated with heavy organic layering. We use Zorro Zoysia on many of the more shaded tee boxes on the Nicklaus Course where Bermudagrass would perform poorly due to the lack of sunlight.

A healthy well-groomed lawn adds both curb appeal and value to your home, and choosing the right grass for your situation is an important part of building a good landscape. While these guidelines provide an overview of what is available in the Lowcountry, it is always best to consult a landscape professional to help make the right decision for your own lawn.

Colleton River Hosts Annual First Tee Golf Tournament

The Bluffton Breeze recently ran the following article about our hosting of the annual First Tee Golf Tournament…

Colleton River Club hosted a golf tournament benefiting First Tee of the Lowcountry, a charitable organization that
teaches life skills and leadership through the game of golf. For the 108 participants the day began with a luncheon at the
Nicklaus Clubhouse, followed by play on the course and culminating with a dinner and auction.
While this was the first time Colleton River hosted First Tee’s annual tournament, the community has supported this
important and empowering organization for quite some time. In recent years Colleton River Club has hosted several
First Tee events and in 2015 proceeds from the community-hosted Junior Pro Am went to the charity, totaling more than
$100,000. Children that have benefited from First Tee programs volunteered as Greeters for the participants.
“The Colleton River Membership as a whole shares a charitable philosophy,” said Tim Bakels, General Manager of
Colleton River Club. “Our continued support of this very worthy cause is one of many examples. We had 5 Member teams
participate in the event and learned that at least one Member was so moved that they decided to begin volunteering for
the organization.”
Colleton River Club is located in Bluffton, SC just 1.5 miles from the bridge to Hilton Head Island. This Member-owned
private golf community features 705 properties situated on a peninsula surrounded by 7 miles of scenic shoreline.
The award-winning, signature 18-hole golf courses by Jack Nicklaus and Pete Dye each have their own unique and
distinguished Clubhouses. Additional community amenities include an Augusta-style Par 3 course, the Stan Smith Tennis
and Swim Center with 6 Har-Tru courts and a Jr. Olympic Pool, as well as a large & modern fitness center, and a community
dock with deep water access, and a state-of-the-art golf practice park and a Learning Center unrivaled in the Southeast.