Caring for the environment is a core concern for Resonance Golf Collection and Golf Sainte Baume. We consider the impact of phytosanitary products on the fauna and subsoil, the increasing scarcity of water and the cost of energy in our daily operations in order to reconcile caring for the environment with the longevity of all Collection golf courses.
Interview with Simon Valmy, superintendent at Golf Sainte Baume
Golf Sainte Baume sits on fertile ground. The original farming land already had healthy soil, which has been further enriched by our fertilising practices. To put it simply, life grows wild here!
That is probably why I love working on this course in particular. Early every morning, I see a bird and hear its particular tweet. Every time I come to this course nature speaks to me, it flutters, it lives life to its fullest. Of course, it’s the same for the other courses I look after, but Sainte Baume is still a unique setting. This is a well-designed course and all we need to do is care for the site’s original environment and work with nature to achieve a stunning result.
Our work revolves around three core concepts:
For the past few years, Golf Sainte Baume has been extensively involved in promoting ecological transition. Everything done on the golf course is carefully thought through in order to ensure we care for the natural resources and biodiversity around us.
Our superintendents structure their work around the three core concepts that form the foundation of responsible maintenance:
- Water management
- Protecting biodiversity
- Controlled use of products
1. Water management
Water management is one of the key challenges that Golf Sainte Baume faces in terms of ecological transition. We all know how essential it is to protect this resource.
That is why Golf Sainte Baume has invested heavily over the past few years in new sprinkler systems. These enable us to accurately track the soil moisture levels and only water those areas that need it by using independent, next generation sprinklers.
Water conservation also involves understanding and studying the soils, to ensure we use the right grass for the ground.
2. Protecting biodiversity
Golf Sainte Baume acts as a ‘green lung’ and forms a precious natural habitat for many species of flora and fauna.
That is why we are working to protect our ecosystem by creating habitats such as insect hotels, nesting boxes and more.
3. Controlled use of products
With the approaching 2025 deadline for zero phytosanitary products, a key challenge for Golf Sainte Baume is the controlled use of products. However, we are already in the transition phase and have been working towards it for many years by using biocontrol and other methods.
To help us adapt to this new ground management approach, we are also implementing other initiatives in terms of equipment as well as soil analysis, in order to achieve plants that are autonomous and disease-resistant.
Biodiversity-certified golf course
We worked with the Sainte Baume regional nature park to achieve bronze-level Label Golf Pour La Biodiversité from FFGolf. Of course, we are now aiming to achieve silver.
Golf Sainte Baume was already one of the first courses in France to achieve GEO certification in 2015. This international certification covers a much wider scope than simple course maintenance and biodiversity protection. It is the culmination of hard work by the entire golf course team, which has already had a significant impact on how we perform our work in general.