Hole of the Month: No. 7 at Sunnybrook Golf Club

By |  October 18, 2017 0 Comments

Sunnybrook Golf Club
Plymouth Meeting, Pa.

538 yards, par 5
Fairways: penncross bentgrass/poa annua
Greens: A1/A4 bentgrass

Sunnybrook Golf Club was founded in 1914 by six men who defected from the Philadelphia Cricket Club because they were frustrated with the large membership. They determined that their new club would be smaller and that there would be no tee times, a tradition that continues to this day.

The club was forced to find a new home in 1954, when it was announced that a highway would be built through parts of the golf course. The William and David Gordon-designed course opened at the club’s current Plymouth Meeting, Pa., location in June 1956.

Almost 60 years later, Geoff Stricker arrived at Sunnybrook GC. He served as assistant superintendent for six years until being promoted to superintendent in 2014. In 2007, the club completed a greens and greenside bunker renovation to bring the course back to the Gordons’ design. Stricker called the renovation “beautiful,” but in 2013 the course wasn’t looking its best because of consistent dollar spot breakouts. The staff started using Syngenta’s Secure fungicide to combat the problem.

“Secure has been the biggest help since it came out,” Stricker says. “We use it in the spring, and it’s usually our last spray in mid- to late September, and we have seen almost no dollar spot in the last three to four years. We actually sprayed it at the beginning of April this year, and didn’t do another fungicide application until the end of May.”

To keep the renovated greens healthy, the staff at Sunnybrook applies combination packs of Daconil Action and Heritage Action. Stricker’s greens are doing so well that he can reduce the frequency of syringes on the turf.

“We have sand-based greens, so usually we would have to syringe at least every hour on really humid days, but we’ve been cutting back to every one-and-a-half to two hours,” says Stricker. “We have minimal issues with the greens, even with soil temperatures fluctuating so quickly with the air temperature.”

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