All posts by Brandon Lane

Essentials of Course Drainage

For most Americans, talking about ground drainage is no where near their favorite subject. However, golf course drainage is a totally different monster. Its design is crucial to keeping the golf course up and running, even after heavy storms. It can determine whether or not a course is able to make money and be open for the day. While some of the systems may be more complicated than regular ground drainage and irrigation, it is important that golf course drainage systems are thoughtfully and thoroughly designed and maintained.

Drainage on a golf course is necessary to eliminate water from the play surfaces enabling it to stay usable during and sometimes after heavy downpours. Better drainage can often help avoid harm to the soil that may result as water piles up into puddles and is kept standing for too long. One of the earliest and most important considerations is where to direct and deposit run off water. If runoff water from the course is directed to enter existing drainage systems, it is imperative to make sure the existing system can handle the additional water and often times, permission will need to be obtained to use these existing systems. Surface drainage will reach into millions of gallons per month / year depending on environment conditions. If the golf course is part of a larger plan that may have major expense and construction consequences. Some people have concerns about the availability of usable water in the next few decades, especially as the world wide population increases. Having systems in place to help reuse runoff water from golf courses has the potential to make a big difference in the future.

The planning phase will commence with a site inspection, during which a site development plan will be drawn up to evaluate low points, cliffs, hills, watercourses, wetland areas and public facilities. There is also a need to recognize different forms of geology and soil, because they may influence how water sinks, flows and collects.

When designing the course, the grading will be shown using contour lines throughout the site plan. Where there is a sharp grade change, the surface water will collect in drains to divert it to a lower place or existing irrigation systems or lakes. Water may be channeled away from the play line using swales and then fall into depressions. The depleted catch basins are then used to store water and remove some waste until it reaches the irrigation network. The designer can also choose to use trenches to channel water alongside the greenway. Sometimes these trench systems can be landscaped to be part of the course and they will include large rocks and wetland plants. In extreme low ground-level cases, water can be pumped out of the ground. However, this is a much more costly option to install and maintain.

Golf course drainage maintenance is constantly changing and needs to be monitored. Regular drainage maintenance includes removing debris, similar to cleaning your home’s gutter system. Proper maintenance includes keeping up-to-date work plans and recording all repairs to the system.

Putters and Gutters

Everyone knows that gutter maintenance is a must, especially to maintain optimum performance of your gutter system. Especially when having to do top notch gutter cleaning in Woodstock Ga on country clubs and putting greens. But did you know that the same can be said for your golf clubs? Here are three easy ways to keep your clubs in good health, similarly to the way you would your gutters.

putter and ball
  1. Store your clubs properly. The best way to store your clubs between use is indoors. Never store them long term in the trunk of your vehicle, especially if you live in a hot climate. The heat can weaken the glue that holds the grip and club head in place. Similarly, if you live in areas with extreme weather or temperatures, you will want to take this into consideration when choosing a new gutter system. Some gutter materials and systems are more suitable for extreme temperatures, while others are more durable and will be able to withstand severe weather.
  2. Own and use a golf towel. This can be a spare towel that you attach to your bag or it can be a towel set specifically made for golfers. Attach one to your bag and use it during your round to wipe down the club faces and grips, especially when moisture and debris gets on them. This is similar to the regular maintenance you do for your gutters. When your gutters receive excess use, they can easily get clogged. It’s important that you clean out your gutters regularly to ensure your gutter systems will work properly.
  3. Use head covers on your woods. Head covers help protect the more delicate and easily-damaged areas on your clubs. Damage to these areas can be costly so you will want to use as much caution to protect these areas as you can. Damage to the heads most commonly occurs when you grab them out of the golf bag and shove them back in. So you will want to be extra careful when doing this. Similar damage can occur when you are transporting your clubs in the car and they get jostled around. Now, many putters are sold with head covers. Just like you protect your clubs, you will want to protect your gutters as well. Many homeowners have chosen to install gutter screens, depending on the type of environment they live in. This can vary based on each individual property and the types and amount of trees and bushed you have nearby. Gutter screens will keep large leaves, acorns, and other debris from falling into your gutter systems. This can help prevent blockage and back-ups in your system and it will ensure that you do not have to completely clean out your system as frequently. However, gutter screens can cause falling debris to pile up on top of your gutter screens. When this happens, rainwater is not able to enter the gutter, and your gutter systems cannot effectively remove excess rainwater form your roof. To prevent this from occurring, you should be sure to check your gutter systems regularly. This can mean climbing up there and doing a visual inspection, or you can hire someone to check them as well. If you live in the Woodstock, GA area I would recommend using Woodstock Gutter Cleaning Pros for any maintenance services you may need. Paying close attention to the performance of your gutter systems during heavy rain can give you a good indication of when there may be blockages.

Surf and Turf- The Key to Keeping Runoff Water Off Your Greens

Gutters are an integral piece of your property’s wellbeing. They serve to control the flow of rainwater to protect your roof, walls, foundation and landscape. When neglected gutters can go from a necessity to a nightmare. A gutter clogged with leaves, sticks and other debris can cause a leaky roof or water damage to the interior or exterior of your home. Clogged gutters also make nice homes for pests, rodents and mold.

When issues with gutter maintenance arise, it can lead to an abundance of issues on the ground level. Back in 2017, hurricane Irma hit the southeast hard. One area that was heavily affected was Woodstock, GA. This area is known for its lush golf courses sprinkled throughout high-end residential areas. After the storm, many homes found their gutter systems clogged with leaves and storm debris. This left not only these homes, but other properties near by, vulnerable to water runoff damage.

muddy golf course

As storm water began to collect on roofs across the city, many water run-off systems could not handle the large volume of water being forced through them. This was largely due to the fact that many of the gutter systems had been clogged by debris from the storms, or they had been clogged prior to the storms. Routine gutter cleaning maintenance can drastically help your water run off systems to do their jobs correctly during regular weather and even during extreme weather conditions. This excess water was, in many cases, not properly drained. This caused water systems to back up and flood the near by golf courses of Woodstock, GA.

Most golf courses are known for their sophisticated drainage systems. No one wants to golf in a muddy swamp land, and if people are not golfing, the course cannot make money. Many golf courses utilize underground water transportation systems. These systems can be a complicated network of pipe which are used to carry the water to a more suitable place, one that can handle large influxes of excess rainwater.

Drainage is a fundamental piece of golf course architecture. Surface draining is a natural and preferred method of draining water.  It is simple and entails using the land to move water off the course and into streams and other receptacles. Surface drainage is a factor that architects must consider when routing the course. This great drainage allows the course to play firm and fast more often than most courses. The benefit of using surface drainage is it is the most cost effective method. It delivers the most natural and best visual aesthetics. It will also lend itself to the best playability because of the lack of drains. One issue that arises with using drainage systems is the water tends to settle around the drain. This will create a softer area where grass doesn’t grow as quickly and firm conditions cease to exist.

While drainage and construction will never be the sexy topic in golf course architecture, it is the most important aspect of it. Because of the well-designed drainage systems in many of the golf courses in Woodstock, most courses faired the excess rain water from gutter overflow with ease. A gentle- remember to practice regular gutter cleaning.