Garden Renovations and Course Accessory Upgrades

by Dean Piller, Superintendent 

Many new and exciting things are happening in our maintenance department as we close in on summer. Our Horticulture team, Emily and Julianna, have just completed the transition of our winter gardens from spring bulbs to beautiful annual flower displays.

I am excited in anticipation to see these flower beds spring to life with color in the coming months. To celebrate our 24th Anniversary on July 6th we have renovated a few garden beds.  First on the list of these beds is beside the ninth green. Rhodos, pieris, and lavender (for the bees) has been added.

We are also very pleased with the way
our vegetable gardens are filling in this season.
The veggie garden at 11 tee and our garden at
the maintenance building will be full this season
with 28 varieties of vegetables grown for use in
Bill Mattick's restaurant by Chef Walter and
his culinary team. Over the next six months
everything from beets, baby potatoes, beans
and zucchini will compliment the daily
offerings on their menus.

One of the requests that came in from our customer survey last year was for more benches and ball washers around our red and white tee boxes. We have always been wary about placing benches in forward locations for safety reasons and we still have these concerns. However, with careful consideration we have added several benches to forward locations. We ask that all golfers take extra precaution when using them. 

This season we budgeted for accessory upgrades.  We have installed new 150 yard poles on our par 4 and par 5 fairways. The caps on the tops of these poles signify the pin locations as front (red caps), middle (white caps) or back (blue caps).  In addition to these new poles, new course signage is going out this week for both courses to signify course directions such as ground under repair, naturalized area designations, etc.

Maintenance activities in the month of June include deep tine aeration in most of our primary rough areas. We are pleased to be able to create our own in-house sand compost for topdressing from our spring aeration cores and garden compost.  This procedure helps relieve the compaction created from winter traffic and maintenance activities over the past year and helps to improve these areas for next winters play.  The deep tine aerator relieves compaction in the upper six inches of our soil profile with a ¾ inch steel tine.  Garden renovations and beautification of our gardens with fresh mulch also keeps our staff very busy over the coming month.

Willie's Rock and plaque

In closing, I want to take a moment to reflect on my first 24 years at Cordova Bay.  Back in 1990, I came out from Alberta for an interview. Jay Basi picked me up at the airport and introduced me to the Course Builder Willie Hall who gave me a tour of the course prior to my interview.  I will never forget that day! 

Willie was such a gentleman.   He was so kind and thoughtful as we walked around the course.  His incredible knowledge, love for his craft and the Cordova Bay property left me with a deep sense of respect and gratitude for him.  To the right of the third fairway close to the 7 forward tees you will find a large rock with a memorial plaque honoring Willies contribution in building Cordova Bay Golf Course.  We affectionately refer to this rock and the garden around it as Willie's Rock.  This rock will always remind me of the beginning of my tenure here and the tremendous influence one man had on the creation of Cordova Bay Golf Course.

Dean Piller, Superintendent