Golf Course Superintendent Newsletter



JUNE 2024

Dear Member / Property Owner,

Following on from the last Golf Course Superintendent’s Newsletter, which was designed to keep you up to date with all the important maintenance procedures which were scheduled to take place on The Indiana Course, we are pleased to be able to give you an update on the works carried out and to inform you of the schedule of works which shall take place through to the third quarter of 2024.


Cleaning of Desert Native Areas and Detailing of All Areas

Our dedicated landscaping team have excelled in rejuvenating the 14th Hole, including the dry creek and the adjacent spaces stretching from the 14th tees to the green. Their efforts have accentuated the stunning appearance of this hole from the tee complex.

Clearing of unwanted vegetation has been completed from behind the 3rd green running down and through to the river crossing in front of the 7th green, with the added benefit of the reconstruction of a new bridge crossing to the left-hand side of the river leading to the green complex.

Clearance of unwanted vegetation from behind Hole 3 through to Hole 7

 New Bridge Crossing on Hole 7

Continuing with desert areas protection, the team strategically placed over 2,500 small wooden stakes along the cart paths throughout the golf course. There are currently 500 more stakes in stock ready to be put in place. This initiative aims to minimise the encroachment of vehicles into the desert native zones, thereby safeguarding the indigenous wildlife and flora, and fostering their natural proliferation.


The paspalum fairways are now beginning to come out of their dormant state, and with the benefit of the completion of several maintenance procedures the playing surfaces are well presented and in good condition.


Due to several factors, the golf course rough is currently the most critical area requiring attention. The main issues include:

  1. Clay Soil: The rough has clay soil with a high capacity to accumulate salts and suffer compaction.
  2. Grass Species: The established rye grass has little tolerance to such adverse weather conditions.
  3. Diseases and Pests: Frequent diseases and pests are affecting the rough.
  4. Irrigation Differentiation: Lack of differentiation between fairway and rough irrigation leads to deficiency.

Over the past months, we have implemented strategies to reduce the biotic and abiotic stresses the plants are exposed to. These efforts have started to improve the roughs. Our plan includes:

  • Incorporating Fairway Plant Material: We will start incorporating plant material from the fairways into the rough areas with the worst density and uniformity of grass. This will help improve the rough overall.
  • Gypsum Application: We will apply large quantities of locally sourced Gypsum (Calcium sulphate) from Sorbas. Gypsum is integral in expelling salts from the soil, which will be further aided by several nights of intensive irrigation.

These actions aim to enhance the condition of the rough and ensure better grass density and uniformity.


A high concentration of salts and a large amount of black layer present in the soil profiles led to a temporary lower than normal high standard of greens presentation in visual terms, whilst not effecting the roll of the ball nor pace of the surface. However, we have managed to improve the greens as a consequence of a dedicated programme of maintenance summarised as follows;

  • Flushing of salts in soil profiles.
  • Change of irrigation strategy. More spaced irrigations in time with more quantity of water to wash salts in each irrigation cycle and enhance root growth in depth. In order to carry out this type of irrigation strategy, it is necessary to support greens with manual and localised irrigation by applying water and a wetting agent each week.
  • Establishment of a fertilization programme with foliar fertilizers and bio stimulants. This has allowed us to recover weak areas with poor grass uniformity and density.
  • Continue with greens aeration programme carried out since the beginning of the year. We have continued to micro aerate with solid small tine (Procore 648S) and to inject air at high pressures through elongated tines (Air2G2 machine), which alleviates soil compaction, enhances drainage, and delivers essential oxygen to the root zone.
  • Carry out green aeration in May as per the pre-advised schedule with hollow tines of large diameter and length with subsequent incorporation of sand. This allows us to renew a large part of soil profile, decompact, improve infiltration and drainage, break up black layers and other undesirable layers of the soil profile, incorporate oxygen for roots and microorganisms.


Cleaning of Desert Native Areas and Detailing of All Areas

The stretch of river that runs from the 7th green to behind the 10th green complex will be cleared and cleaned.

Building on the comprehensive improvements made to the Indiana course, we will initiate a recovery programme for natural areas around tees and green complexes, aiming to restore the course to its original state.

We will start on Hole 1 by repopulating the tee complexes with plant material, replacing the deteriorated wooden sleepers for each tee, and replacing the artificial rocks of the Championship Tee with natural rocks.

We will eradicate invasive species, foster the growth of native plants, and preserve the indigenous habitat, thus creating areas that are not only visually appealing but also environmentally responsible.

Consistent with our previous initiatives, we will persist in restricting access to certain desert native zones around the course. This strategy is critical for protecting the native wildlife and plant life, and for supporting their natural expansion and flourishing. We are also restricting access to specific grass areas of all par 3´s and temporarily to some holes with compaction issues. In this way we have the possibility to recover and improve the presentation of these holes.

Ongoing Course Improvements

Throughout June to August, we will implement the rough and fairway improvement programme. This will include verticutting, aeration with solid or hollow tines, cleaning, and top-dressing with sand. This maintenance schedule is essential for the overall improvement of the course, particularly in enhancing soil quality and aerating the plant roots, leading to better plant health.

Additional planned course improvements include:

  • Improvement of the driving range – introduction of rough to either side to represent that which a golfer will experience on the course
  • Improvement of academy short game practice area with the benefit of the reconstruction of the Palm Springs Creek with an operational water fountain.
  • Improvement of golf course signage
  • Improvement of the presentation of the course furniture; wagon wheel chairs, ball washers, bins, sand boxes, etc.
  • Refurbishing and updating the railroad sleeper steps leading to the tees
  • Checking and replacing the yardage markers in the fairways

2025 Greens Hollow Coring Dates

In the knowledge that all Property Owners and Members need to have as much notice as possible concerning particular aspects of the golf course maintenance schedule that may temporarily affect the playing conditions of the green’s surface, thus enabling them to plan particular holidays, accordingly, please see below the hollow coring dates in 2025.

  • Monday the 12th, Tuesday the 13th and Wednesday the 14th of May

You will be able to keep up to date with the full tournament and social calendar, format and any additions, information of how to enter, and much more, by visiting either our official website or by contacting the Resort Reception at Desert Springs.

We and the staff at Desert Springs are looking forward to seeing you on The Indiana course in the near future.

As always please remember to fix your ball marks and replace your divots.

Kind regards,

Ricardo Gonzalez-Carrascosa Almenara

Golf Course Superintendent