His work day begins by 4:30 a.m., before most of us are even thinking about getting out of bed. With headlights on machines and headlamps on workers, he and his crew begin the daily rounds of setting pins, raking traps, checking sprinklers, and mowing greens and fairways.
Meet Randy Corderman, Robson Ranch Golf Course superintendent. Originally from Oregon, Randy moved to Gilbert after attending the University of Kansas. His golf course work was on-the-job training, and his expertise and love of the job are both readily apparent. He’s been head superintendent for 32 years, and has worked for the Robson Community for 39 years this July 1. He has a staff of 11 to 15 workers, several of whom have been with him for many years. His hard-working, dedicated crew spend countless hours in all kinds of weather to keep the course in tip-top shape. As Randy says, “without this crew, there wouldn’t be a golf course.”
Water Smarter. The subject of water comes up often since, after all, we do live in the desert. Two percent of Arizona water is used on golf courses across the state. Conserving that water, while still keeping our golf course green and healthy, is always a priority. Most of our course is overseeded, meaning rye grass is planted over the existing bermuda grass for the change of seasons. Overseeding takes extra water for the new grass to grow. Due to the expense, and possible rye grass seed shortages, the golf course may see some necessary changes down the road.
How’s the Weather Out There? Weather is another common topic for both golf course superintendents and players. We’ve had a very windy season! With summer heat upon us though, the golf course begins closing nine holes every Tuesday. That day is spent aerifying and trying to stay ahead of any heat-caused damage. Our annual average rainfall is 7 to 8 inches, most of which occurs during the monsoon season. Rain is always welcome and helpful, but also can cause temporary damage from flooding.
As Homeowners and Golfers, We Can Help! Extra play during high season and extra carts on the course takes a toll. Follow the signs, stay off the fairways as much as possible, use sand in divots, and repair ball marks.
Being an innovator and a problem-solver are both necessary skills for our course superintendent. Being outdoors is a special plus. Always optimistic, Randy enjoys talking about current projects and future plans for the course. Although he goes home each night for some family time, he’ll be back at it bright and early the next day!