What is a golf course to do when the ultradwarf Bermudagrass on its greens turn brown as the turf goes dormant in the winter months? Some courses in the Southeast are choosing to paint them green.
The technique of painting a browning green is basically a cosmetic approach, but courses that use the practice say it does have some cost saving benefits as it cuts down on watering and other maintenance costs.
"People who have never tried it are skeptical, as I was," Rodney Lingle, superintendent at Memphis Country Club told Golfweek. "But around here, everyone knows it works. And if you do it correctly, it looks natural. A lot of people can't even tell."
According to Golfweek, the painting technique is primarily used on ultradwarf grasses, which have a finer leaf blade and maintain their carpet-like condition even when dormant.
Patrick O'Brien, an agronomist for the U.S. Golf Association told the magazine that 80 to 90 percent of courses with ultradwarf grasses paint their greens and says painting can give a green a smoother and faster surface.