That’s the question I was asking myself leading into the ＫＢＣオーガスタ tournament.
Because it wasn’t just playing any kind of golf. It was professional golf, televised golf, and it also happened to rain 827 mm (32 inches) from the start of August until Friday morning of tournament week (August 27).
Zoysia putting greens are common from Japan to Singapore because manilagrass—Zoysia matrella, or korai in Japanese—is tolerant of close mowing in the climate of East and Southeast Asia. The ball roll on zoysia putting greens is distinctive because the grass leaves are so stiff.
The KBC Augusta tournament (#KBCオーガスタ) is coming up, and as in past years, I find it extraordinarily interesting. There aren’t many tournaments like this one, from a grass and playing surface perspective.
There’s a short video about greenkeeper Mamoru Shoji and course maintenance at Kasumigaseki CC on YouTube. I especially like the view from the drone just after the 3 minute mark, showing the greens nestled among the carefully trimmed pine trees.
It’s been cloudy, and raining, and I wasn’t in a rush to cut the grass. I decided to skip mowing for exactly 4 weeks to demonstrate the difference in growth habit that I wish everyone paid attention to.
I get to see a lot of bermudagrass and zoysiagrass putting greens. In fact, most of my golf is played on one of those two surfaces. Sometimes people ask me about the ball roll on zoysia compared with roll on bermudagrass.
I see a lot of grass in driveways, parks, lawns, and fields when I run around southern Thailand. And because I can’t run very fast, and I happen to be curious about grasses, I get a pretty good look at what is growing.
The American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) has a new series of videos about each of their facilities. I watched this one about the Manila American Cemetery with special interest. I think you’ll be impressed when you see this.
I’ve seen a lot of highways in Thailand. Highway medians are sodded with manilagrass (Zoysia matrella) as a matter of course (more about the cost of that below). I’ve seen some impressive vistas of this work in past years, but for safety reasons haven’t been able to get any photos.