From the SunBird Golf Course Superintendent

Marc Francoeur

Hello, welcome back to Arizona and SunBird. We missed you. I’m writing this on the 4th of October, and we are still nine days from seeding the golf course. We look forward to the upcoming season, and I’m always interested in finishing an overseed and seeing the outcome. I suppose you could call it our canvas like an artist. I wish I had that talent. I think I will stick to growing grass!

In the past few months, we have been busy with some projects on the course, trying to improve your experience here on the golf course. Like last year, we continued to grow grass in areas that were lacking or had none. We filled in the sand trap right side of number 4 green. Now we have a grass depression there. We also did some improvements in areas where we had some standing water issues. For example, on number 17 left greenside, there is the lake that we seem to never be able to get rid of. Also, on number 16 in front of the forward tees, that drain was completely clogged, and the issue was in play at the beginning of number 12 tee. In addition, this summer we started to get another lake forming on the right side of number 4 rough. We had existing drainage in these places already, but they are old, and over the years they have been plugged up from the rains and runoff from the course and streets.

Unfortunately, we had some major irrigation breaks in our mainline. These occurred close to the pump station—one being by the driving range tee and the other behind number 1 tee by the pool. I say major because these both were big pipes, measuring eight and 10 inches. The first had our irrigation system down for five days during the early days of August, which was stressful because of the pathetic monsoon season we had this year. Of all the cities in the valley, Chandler saw the least amount of rainfall! Finally, we completed the second break this past Thursday. I was not as concerned about this one only because we are backing off our water to get ready for prepping of the overseed. If I could pick an irrigation break, this one had perfect timing.

We also finished up several beautification projects in and around the course. Please take notice of the areas we completed last summer around hole number 4 along Championship Drive and LaCosta. That makes our course and SunBird look really good. And along number 5 green on Championship Drive, we also added a new irrigation line around the perimeter of number 15 thanks to a donation by the SunBird Garden Club. Also, there are a few areas along number 2 and number 3 that have been done. A big “Thank You” to Gudie Huffman and all our wonderful volunteers.

Again, welcome back to all our winter visitors, and happy golfing.