Boardroom #53 - Heart Warming Loyalty

By Dave Doherty

Earlier this week, I had the good fortune to be part of a team that was working on finding drain tiles under stressed greens in the central part of the United States.

Although the greens are relatively new being only ten years old, they have struggled quite a bit over the last four years.  The owners [a father and son team] along with the superintendent, had tried everything that they could think of and everything that some consulting experts had recommended. Some of the greens were rebuilt and others had additional drainage installed.  The greens were aerified, verticut, top dressed frequently and fans were even installed. The owners spent a tremendous amount of money, the superintendent and his staff put in many long frustrating hours. All to no avail.

After the last two years the member’s patience had worn extremely thin and wanted answers as to why the greens had not improved and was the superintendent capable of doing his job.  The owners knew that the superintendent was extremely loyal, intelligent, hardworking and capable, however the condition of the greens strongly suggested otherwise. 

The owners were in a very difficult position and were as frustrated as the superintendent as to why the greens were struggling. 

The team I was working with discovered that the drainage tiles installed at the time of construction were not functioning properly and had not been since the original construction. It was really quite remarkable that the greens had the quality of turf that they had, considering the lack of oxygen that was available to the plants.

As I write this article, the drain tiles are being located and repaired by the Superintendent, his staff, and the professional team I was fortunate enough to be working with.  The problems of the past will not be the problems of the future.

The main reason that I am writing this article is to point out the tremendous loyalty that the owners had toward their superintendent.  Before the compromised drain tiles were discovered the owners stressed to me how worried that were about the superintendent.  Their concern for his mental well-being and erosion of self-confidence was truly heartwarming.

The owners HEART WARMING LOYALTY and willingness to care and support their superintendent during these difficult times while searching for answers will enable this club to move forward in the future with success and pride.

What we need to understand and never forget is that there is always a reason and there is always an answer.  Sometimes it is the superintendent but most often it is something else.  “THERE IS ALWAYS A REASON” for stressed turf. We just need to keep searching.

COPYWRITE        November 28, 2015     David L. Doherty