Sean McLean, Links Superintendent at Princes Golf Club, has months of careful preparation ahead of him. June 2017 sees his club join with Royal St Georges to host the 122nd Amateur Championships once again this year. Whilst Sean admits he likes to trial new products, he intends to rely on Johnsons Sports Seed mixtures for his course preparation.
To get ready for the big season ahead, major projects have taken place including bunker and path renovations, a new lodge putting green and installation of irrigation. Overseeding work began in autumn 2016 when Johnsons J Fescue was applied to Fairways and Tees while J Nitro Fescue, the ProNitro coated option, was used on the Greens. “We work closely with STRI agronomist Alistair Beggs, and his advice alongside the results in the STRI trial guide determines our selections. At the moment J Fescue is our top choice as we prefer the finer species and as a links course, the drought tolerance of J Fescue is an important factor.”
Rainfall at Princes tends to be minimal, and with a free-draining site, this leads to drought problems. “Last year between the start of July and the middle of September we only had 30mm of rain! We also experience near-constant breeze coming across from the continent which dries out any rainfall we do get pretty quickly.” Sean has found that Johnsons seed mixtures cope very well with the circumstances at hand, but as with all areas of maintenance, it requires constant monitoring and action if needed.
Johnsons has been the seed of choice at Princes since Sean joined in 2009 and this is testament to the results delivered. “We always get good results and with such a big few years ahead for the club, it’s one less thing to worry about. You know it’s going to perform.”
If the Amateur Championships weren’t enough work for Sean and his team they will be hosting the Final Qualifying for The Open for 4 years from 2018.