The Main Types of Golf Grass
Although a common misconception, golf grass is extremely different from the natural and synthetic turf you can purchase at home. A considerable amount of thought goes into the type of golf course grass used on courses and putting greens, as it can greatly affect the outcome of the game, and the way golfers interact with the ball. We explore all types of both natural and artificial golf grass used on golf courses and putting greens across the world.
Golf grass can help determine the difficulty of each course depending on the type used and the height it is cut. Shorter grass allows for less friction, making a swing more powerful. In longer grass, it is more difficult to put successfully.
Artificial Golf Grass
It’s not unheard of for putting greens to be constructed in homes as well as professional golf courses. If you’re a golf enthusiast with an ingrained love for the sport, you’ll know how absorbed you can be, and the need to play and relax with friends can be overwhelming.
Synthetic golf grass and artificial putting greens offer spectacular advantages over traditional natural grass:
- It’s sustainable. Natural grass requires a lot of fertiliser and consistent irrigation in order to eventually come through. Each week in the height of the summer season, a golf course with regular grass requires 100,000 to 1,000,000 gallons of water to remain healthy. Artificial grass eliminates this need entirely.
- No Growing time. Natural grass which is ideal for golfing tends to be slow to establish. This means construction and maintenance, tending the lawns, can take months. This leaves a balding and patchy garden until the grass eventually comes through. With artificial grass, it can be laid within a matter for days and will remain looking fresh for years to come.
- Much less maintenance required. Artificial grass doesn’t require tending, mowing, fertilising and watering like natural grass. This is great for households that want to get the enjoyment of a homemade golf course without the constant maintenance of a professional golf course.
Types of Natural Golf Grass
Agrostis or Bent Grass
Known as a type of premium British lawn, Bent grass is renowned for its perfect aesthetic. Short, flat and perfectly even, it is an ideal type of golf grass for putting greens and courses. The fact that it grows extremely short means that it can be mowed even shorter, perfect for golfers as they putt on the green.
In order to install Bent grass onto your lawn or putting green, it requires a lot of ground preparation and hard graft to get the appearance you want. Digging and levelling is needed to prevent sinking at a later stage and to gain the appearance of a well-maintained lawn. Fertilising for growth needs to be conducted wholly in spring and autumn to prevent the golf grass from dying out during winter.
Fescue is predominantly a shade grass but is also a popular choice amongst golf course designers. There are over 300 species available, but only specific types are suitable for golfing. Fescue is typically placed in unmowed areas of the course, as it is ornamental purposes and its fast-growing capabilities.
However, Fescue is not only used for second-cut rough but also occasionally used as putting green. Fescue can be mowed extremely short to be used in the Fairway.
Ryegrass grows in an upright position that creates much less friction on the green. As such, it has become an increasingly well-used golf grass type over the past decade or so. You can also create fantastic striping, which from an aesthetic perspective is synonymous with golfing greens. Like several of the other lawn types, it is able to withstand significant close-moving whilst appearing healthy, another reason why ryegrass is a suitable type of golf grass.
Bermuda grass is renowned for its capability of withstanding drought and extreme heat, perfect for putting greens with little shade or in topical areas. It is extremely popular in the USA, as it also has a speedy recovery rate that’s a much-needed quality in types of golf grass. As such, it’s a very viable choice for golfers. Whether this grass will be ideal for you highly depends on the environment you live in and how your grass would be used.
Smooth Stalked Meadow Grass
Like Bermuda grass, smooth stalked meadow grass has good resistance against typical wear and tear but is also quick to recover when experiencing high levels of footfall or damage. However, it has a slightly thicker texture than other grass types and is slow to establish, which can be difficult when attempting to design and construct a golfing range. That combined with its colour richness, smooth stalked meadow grass is the ideal candidate for summer sports grass including tennis courts and golf courses.
Zoysia grass is another type that can be used to put from a fairway, that’s been compared to putting directly of a tee. Unlike its counterparts like bent and rye, it requires much less water. Therefore, there is increased attention on the grass that’s helping conserve water and help the increase the sustainability of golf courses worldwide.
Conclusion: Types of Golf Grass
Regardless of whether you choose natural or artificial golf grass, putting greens with improved performance characteristics have been continuously developed over the last few years. The area in which you live and the level of shading will be a huge determinant for which grass you should use. The amount of time on your hands will also be a big consideration, as those with less time won’t be able to maintain the appearance of natural grass as well. For an easier and more convenient option for busy golf-loving households, artificial golf grass may be the best choice.
If you’re interested in our artificial golf grass, Forever Green Lawns provide quality artificial putting greens and golf grass to make your dream mini-course at home. Find out more about costs here and contact us with your measurements and photos today, or simply contact us to find out more about what we do.