Wednesday, March 10, 2010
tree stump cemetary to service the golf course all over the spa, very sad.
save the victoria pool society has been upset about all the trees being cut down at the park and put pictures on the blog: www.save-the-victoria-pool-society.blogspot.com starting in January. OUR FAVORITE POEM ABOUT TREES WAS WRITTEN BY JOYCE KILMER(SEE BELOW) LONG AGO AND SAYS IT ALL. THEY ALWAYS PULL THIS STUFF WHEN MOST PEOPLE ARE NOT GOING TO THE PARK IN THE DEAD OF WINTER AND DARK OF NIGHT, NO DOUBT.
Spa State Park trees cut to make grass healthier
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
By Tatiana Zarnowski (Contact)
Tree removal is under way at the golf course area at Saratoga Spa State Park.
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SARATOGA SPRINGS — Nearly 500 aging white pines at Saratoga Spa State Park have been leveled to save the turf at Saratoga Spa Golf.
This spring, golfers will notice that some greens, fairways and teeing grounds are clearer of trees.
Trees are being removed in areas where the turf has become unhealthy because of a lack of sunlight and nutrients. The private company that runs the golf course has spent $200,000 so far removing the trees with the blessing of the United States Golf Association and the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.
“If you put it in context, it’s not many trees in the scope of how many trees there are in the golf course,” said Bill Richardson, president and owner of Professional Golf Services, which has a contract to run the two golf courses and the Catherine’s in the Park restaurant.
The pines that have been cleared were some of those planted in the 1930s, he said.
“They are nearing the end of their natural lifespan,” Richardson said. “Since they’ve been planted, the trees have grown enormously.”
While they lend the park the wooded, secluded feel that hikers, swimmers, picnickers and golfers love, the trees block sunlight from hitting the turf on the course and also compete with the grass for water and nutrients.
As they get bigger and older, the trees are also more susceptible to being blown over in storms, he noted.
The USGA’s Agronomy Department, which studies plants and soils, made several visits to the golf course to examine the turf and recommend what needs to be done to keep it growing well.
“There are certain parts of it which are not healthy,” Richardson said.
Smooth, even surfaces and healthy grass are necessary to create good playing conditions for golfers and keep the course competitive with others in the area.
“We’re expecting that playing conditions here are going to improve dramatically this year, and over the next couple of years it should be very, very noticeable,” Richardson said.
Trees were cleared last year at the greens for the 10th, 15th and 17th holes. This year, pines were cut at the sixth and ninth greens, the seventh green, the eighth tee and the right side of the ninth green, Richardson said.
A few trees are being cut in each of the following areas as well: the second, 11th, 17th and 18th greens; and the fifth fairway and second tee of the nine-hole Executive Course.
Work on a $500,000 irrigation system began last summer and is expected to continue this year and be done by the 2012 season at the latest, he said.
The company paid for work on the cart paths last year and expects to redo the bunkers, or sand traps, in the near future.
Richardson’s company is paying for the work, which partially fulfills a contractual obligation to the state that his company will put money into capital projects at the course.
Richardson acknowledged that some golfers and other fans of the park will object to the trees being cut.
“Taking down the trees is not something everybody’s in favor of. [But] nobody’s just willy-nilly cutting them down.”
Non-golfers are most likely to notice the cleared trees across from the entrance to the Victoria Pool.
Save the Victoria Pool Society co-founder Louise Goldstein objects to the trees’ removal, however.
“It seems like everything is catering to the golfers all the time,” she said. “I’ve gotten many e-mails from people who are very upset because not everybody is a golfer who uses the park.”
Park manager Mike Greenslade said that so far, no one has complained to him about the cutting of trees.
“I think there were a few more phone calls last year when they did the initial part of the program,” he said. “I think the word’s gotten out that this is for the overall health of the golf course.”
The state park has its own regular inspection program to remove ailing trees, Greenslade said.
“We do inspections a couple times a year. Everybody’s always on the lookout for any kind of unsafe trees,” he said.
Joyce Kilmer. 1886–1918
I THINK that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the sweet earth's flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day, 5
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain. 10
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.