Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Frost- what's the delay?

It's that time of year again when we have to consider frost delays. Generally there are "hard Frosts" and "light frosts". The hard frost is when the entire leaf and crown of the plant are frozen solid. This is characterized by the white sheen over the entire surface and the crunching sound the turf makes when pressed. This type of frost is also characterized by the fact that the turf does not spring back when you run your hand through it. This is the most devestating frost as the crown, the brain of the plant, is frozen and when crushed, it will absolutely lead to plant death. Any traffic across this will leave damage. A substantial delay should be expected. This frost usually occurs when temperatures are very low and/or a rain event has occured during the evening.
The second type is a lighter frost. This is characterized by powderey ice crystals that flake off when brushed. The turf does spring back. The delay for this type are generally shorter.Please remember that the temperatures often drop just before sunrise and that certain areas of the course simply take longer to thaw out. Holes 2,4,5 are consistently the last to thaw. When we do have a delay, we ask that you follow the proshop directions. We will usually have the PG's closed and we will institute cart restrictions in an effort to begin play as soon as possible. We appreciate your cooperation as we work to preserve our conditions at WR.
The following video highlights the condition of the ice formation during frost. It follows the really bad acting, so hang in there.