Nikanti Golf Club, in Nakhon Pathom just outside of Bangkok, has commenced a comprehensive upgrade to the original irrigation system. The original system was not designed to a high standard. As a result, the system was not performing to a level that allowed the maintenance staff to prepare the course to the high standards required by the ownership. The current irrigation renovations include:
- Complete new Toro greens in and out part circle sprinklers as well as surrounds sprinklers along the turf perimeter located along the sides and rear of the green throwing back to the green.
- Additional decoders to allow for individual sprinkler control of all sprinklers on the course.
- Supplemental mainlines to provide complete looping and significantly reduce the total irrigation watering time and reduce pressure loss.
- A new pump station with significantly higher flow capacity to greatly reduce the total irrigation watering time as well.
The installation is being performed by J & J Thailand under the supervision of Somchai Chokchalermwong – J & J Irrigation Manager, James Schumacher – President of ATI, Hamish McKendrick – Agronomy Consultant and Brad Revell – Golf Course Superintendent. The piping around the greens is being installed with great care so as to not interfere with play or the golf experience. This allows for play to continue on the course while the work is ongoing.
James Schumacher, President of ATI prepared the irrigation consulting and design for the project. He is also providing the all-important sprinkler layout around the greens, inspecting the work of the contractor and programming the new system into the computer.
The initial greens irrigation sprinkler locations and coverage were very poor. The new sprinkler spacing will provide complete and even coverage of the greens and surrounds enhancing the golf experience. If the sprinkler locations and spacing are not correct they can have an extremely negative effect on the turf and playability of the course. This normally causes overwatering of the approaches and surroundings. The result is that the ball cannot bounce or roll onto the green making approach shots and chipping difficult and unenjoyable. ATI provides the complete layout of the green and surrounding sprinklers as well as an inspection of the work. The work is being installed to a high level with little damage to the turf.
The increased pump station and mainline capacity will reduce the total irrigation time so irrigation can be completed well before play and maintenance can commence in the morning. This will greatly improve the golfers’ experience since they can play when the course is drier. The shorter total irrigation time and drier conditions will also reduce the compaction of the soil from the mowing equipment and carts in the morning.
The system features a Toro Lynx GDC off-fairway decoder control system with individual control of each sprinkler. The new 681m3 per hour pump station is manufactured by Watertronics. The pump station is sized to service a possible future (6) hole addition. One of the features of Nikanti is that the course is routed in 3 groups of 6-holes rather than the traditional 2 sides of 9-holes.
The work is scheduled to be completed by the end of March 2016.