Golf Course Grasses
Different types of golf course grass affects the way of playing. Grass experts are aware that various kinds have distinctive impacts. We’re discussing turf grass. There are numerous varieties, each suited for a certain climate and with unique characteristics that have a variety of effects on you as the golfer. It’s a broad topic that wouldn’t fit in one PhD dissertation. What we can provide here are tidbits, brief expert insights.
Shawn Westacott is the man’s name. At the Club at Comanche Trace in Kerrville, Texas, he serves as the superintendent. Along with being a great player, he has previously won the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America national competition, which attracts some very decent sticks. We asked Westacott for his cribnotes on six typical turf kinds, as well as some information on how each plays when properly maintained, given his expertise growing — and competing on a variety of grasses.
Top 6 Types of Grasses Used in Golf Courses:
What kind of grass is used in golf courses? A question that arises in mind of golf course experts.
1. Bermuda Grass:
The majority of the time when elite athletes discuss grain, they are referencing Bermuda. They are not mistaken. Bermuda is a common warm-season turf in the South that is resilient, drought-tolerant, and can become gritty. However, when the grass is closely mown, as Tour professionals prefer it to be, that tendency is moderated. According to Westacott, Bermuda has a superbly solid, quick, and true surface in that state. As it goes on, it can also be pure playing, giving most amateurs the kind of cushion they love.
The problem is that when Bermuda expands, more grain is visible, which can have an impact on everything from fairway roll to putt velocity and break. When you swing faster, you might not notice the influence of grain on approach shots from the fairway. However, it cannot be disregarded on or near the greens. Bermuda’s reputation for snagging clubs is well-known on chip shots into the grain. Similar to down- or up-grain putts, birdie bids left horribly long or short can depend entirely on them. As a general guideline, you should put against the grain if the grass appears shiny. The ground is running against you if it has a duller tone. Adjust as necessary.
Contrary to your grandparents, bentgrass has little desire to spend his golden years in Florida. It is a cool-season grass with fine, closely-mowable blades. The grain in bentgrass is not as dense as in Bermuda. It can play differently based on the place and season, just like other varieties of turf. But specifically in the spring and fall, according to Westacott, bentgrass in the Northeast is a thing of beauty, running on the fairways and greens with a smooth, firm, and quick consistency.
Bentgrass requires a lot of water when temperatures rise since it struggles in sweltering heat. As a result, the greens and fairways may be quite soft if you play on bentgrass during the height of summer. Bentgrass can begin to display indications of stress by becoming a faint shade of brown when it becomes dehydrated. But that doesn’t necessarily imply that it’s doing poorly. In fact, according to Westacott, bentgrass performs best when it is just a little bit stressed.
3. Zoysia Grass:
What type of grasses do golf course uses? You may praise Zoysia on its posture if it were a teenager. It has a straight posture and offers lovely lies in the fairway. “The ball is teed up so nicely for you, it almost feels like cheating,” explains Westacott.
Zoysia is a warm-season grass that requires little water and is cold-tolerant enough for transition zones, allowing it to be maintained firmer than most grasses. It also has the advantage of having less grain than Bermuda. If there is a maintenance disadvantage, according to Westacott, it is that Zoysia is prone to illness and the protective coatings it needs can get pricey, making it unsuitable for courses with limited funding.
4. Poa Annua:
Golfers enjoy finding an excuse, and poa is frequently used as one. A frustrated golfer missing a putt and blaming the cool-season grass for it could serve as an alternative emblem for the PGA Tour. The reputation is not entirely unfounded. Poa grows quickly, and the seed heads it produces can cause bumpiness on the greens in the late afternoon.
Types of grass on a golf course. Though no grass is flawless. And when Westacott discusses poa, he leans more toward its advantages. Poa can withstand high traffic levels in addition to low light and moist surroundings. When kept up, poa can perform as honestly as any surface. “The greens at Winged Foot are poa,” claims Westacott. And there aren’t any better putting surfaces than them. Additionally, according to Westacott, the same seed heads that some players complain about can be advantageous. “On bent or Bermuda, I sometimes find it difficult to pick out lines,” he admits. On poa, though, there will frequently be a tiny seed head or a slight discoloration that makes it simpler for me to acquire my line.
5. Fescue Grass:
Oh, he discovered the fescue. Many of us picture Ian Woosnam being swallowed whole by airy, golden meadows when we hear that term. After all, fescue is the grass of links golf, and it frequently grows in the natural, un-mowed regions where you would prefer not to hit your ball. Fescue, though, can be an excellent short grass as well, fantastic on fairways, greens, and tees for a variety of reasons.
Because it is so simple to maintain, course operators adore it. Since it grows slowly, it needs to be cut down less frequently than many other grasses. It also uses less water. You could call it the purist’s choice for a playing surface because it offers the firm, springy characteristics that come to mind when we think of golf on the other side of the water.
6. Rye Grass:
Rye grass is more like Ringo if Bermuda and bentgrass are the John and Paul of the turf world. Even though it isn’t the show’s major star, removing it could ruin the performance. Rye grass is frequently utilized in autumn over seeding to brighten appearances and playability as Bermuda goes dormant. If you play on a course soon after over seeding, expect soft conditions because rye needs a lot of water. Rye can occasionally come off as a touch “sticky,” according to Westacott, for the same reason.
But it possesses a lot of advantageous qualities. Rye, according to Westacott, allows for exquisite striping and other aesthetically pleasing mowing patterns since it has a fine texture and grows erect. It is susceptible to breaking, like many lovely things. It struggles in the heat, and if you mow it too short, it won’t successfully keep out intruders for very long. The lack of rye on golf course greens is explained by those characteristics. But rye can be a great surface in other places. For instance, rye is used to over seed the fairways where The Masters is played. That’s all there needs to be stated if Augusta approves.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Is Golf Course Grass the Same as Regular Lawn Grass?
No, golf course grass is specially selected and maintained to meet the unique demands of golf courses, such as high traffic and precision play.
How Often Should I Water Golf Course Grass?
The frequency of watering depends on factors like climate and grass type. Generally, deep and infrequent watering is recommended to encourage deep root growth.
Can I Play Golf on Wet Grass?
Playing on wet grass is not ideal, as it can damage the turf and affect your game. It’s best to wait until the grass has dried.
What’s the Ideal Height for Mowing Golf Course Grass?
The ideal mowing height varies for different grass types but generally ranges between 0.5 to 1 inch for greens and 1.5 to 2.5 inches for fairways.
How Can I Prevent Weeds on My Golf Course?
Regular maintenance practices like proper mowing, fertilization, and aeration can help prevent weed infestations.
Is Overseeding Necessary for My Golf Course?
Overseeding is beneficial for maintaining a green appearance year-round, especially in colder climates.
Golf course grass is the unsung hero of the golfing world, providing not just a beautiful backdrop but also contributing to a top-notch golfing experience. By understanding its varieties, maintenance, and advantages, you can ensure your fairways remain the envy of every golfer. So, invest in the care of your golf course grass, and enjoy the game on the greenest of carpets! If you need any assistance regarding your golf course maintenance or any landscape ideas you can contact DUA Landscape. our experts are always available for you to help.