brays_island_feature Capital Improvement Planning at Brays Island Plantation

An important aspect of IGM’s success as a leading golf course maintenance contractor is our commitment to establishing long-term relationships with our clients. As agronomic experts, our best work extends far beyond the typical maintenance tasks of mowing, fertilizing, and watering golf courses. Our partnership with Brays Island Plantation owners stands out as an example of the efficient, cost-effective capital improvement process that can be achieved through collaborative planning and budgeting.

IGM has contracted with privately held Brays Island Plantation in South Carolina since 2008. The golf course is known for its sizeable greens and natural hazards. Fairways are surrounded by thickets of oak, pine, and magnolia, as well as woods, pastures, and tidal marshes.

“Every year, we recommend, plan, and execute capital improvements at the Plantation, in addition to executing the equipment replacement program. Our current focus for the golf course is drainage infrastructure and improving growing sites,” said IGM Regional Manager Tyler Minamyer.

To facilitate the collaboration, IGM Superintendent Jeff Miller not only communicates with the Club’s management but also participates with the Brays Island owners’ golf committee. Several times a year, he offers educational tours for the owners. “The owners at Brays Island are very engaged in what is happening on the Plantation. Tours are conducted with a focus on the golf amenity, as well as the wildlife and natural habitats the course supports,” Miller explained.

In 2011, IGM worked with Brays Island Plantation to renovate and upgrade irrigation for the Ron Garl-designed course and practice facility. During the slower summer months of 2011, the replacement process took place one hole at a time to reduce disruptions to the golfers. Goals of the irrigation project were to:

  • Maintain the integrity and value of Brays Island’s asset
  • Install an efficient system with the longest useful life expectancy possible
  • Improve dependability
  • Increase the distribution uniformity of water
  • Improve consistency of course conditions
  • Reduce water and electrical usage

Capital improvement timing is critical for golf courses. The project met the necessary completion date of August 31, to allow time for complete testing and fine tuning prior to the fall over-seeding process.

After successful completion of the irrigation project, a grass upgrade was undertaken in 2015. Brays Island Plantation owners wanted faster, more consistent greens comparable to their competition. Project goals were identified as:

  • Maintain the integrity and value of Brays Island’s asset
  • Eliminate the risk of catastrophic failure due to over-seeding and transition
  • Improve playability of the greens during peak and shoulder periods
  • Allow for more consistency in playing conditions throughout the entire year
  • Remain competitive with area golf courses
  • Improve Owners’ enjoyment of the golf amenity.

The final grassing was timed to take advantage of the best possible growing weather for a warm season grass.

“The Brays Island owners place a great deal of trust in IGM to help manage their asset. They know we work hard to make the best possible decisions for today, as well as for the long-term sustainability of the golf course,” said Miller.

IGM is a leading contractor for comprehensive golf course maintenance, and its environmental stewardship program is implemented at every client course. For more information on IGM and the professional golf course services offered, please contact Greg Plotner, Executive Vice President, 407-589-7200.