FORSYTH COUNTY, Ga. — The grass is greener at the Windermere Golf Club.
The Windermere property, which first opened in 2000 at 5000 Davis Love Drive in Cumming, has switched from Bentgrass to Mini Verde Ultra Dwarf Bermuda, as part of a general renovation that cost about $300,000.
“This change allows us to provide smooth, fast putting surfaces throughout the year, which the members really enjoy,” said Lance Bailey, general manager.
Bailey said when golf courses grew in popularity in the mid-1980s, Bentgrass greens, a northern grass, was the go-to choice.
Mini Verde Ultra Dwarf Bermuda has a strong reputation throughout the industry for quality year-round play. Its consistent putting surface, minimal maintenance, tolerance to temperature extremes and recovery from foot traffic, makes it the grass of choice in the Southeast.
Bentgrass does better in mild conditions. In the last three-to-five years, summers have gotten hotter in Atlanta and that means the grass is not able to keep up.
“So we went from 11 good months out of the year, to eight-to-10 good months out of the year,” Bailey said. “The members weren’t enjoying the courses as much.”
Canongate Golf Clubs, which operate Windermere, have also installed Ultra Dwarf Bermuda grass at seven additional Atlanta area courses including Chapel Hills, Whitewater Creek, Eagle Watch, White Oak, Olde Atlanta, Bentwater and Smoke Rise golf clubs.
The more than $1.5 million investment has given golfers the opportunity to play on both Bermuda and Bentgrass, making the best greens accessible year-round.
“You have to shut down for 10 weeks starting in June because this is the time to grow Bermuda in and it needs long hot days and sunlight,” Bailey said.
In addition to re-sodding the fairway, crews rebuilt bunkers, cut down trees around the greens and landscaped and beautified areas. A new fleet of golf carts with global positioning systems were also upgraded to the membership.
“They absolutely love it,” Bailey said of the golfers and staff. “It’s less stress on our Turf Care staff, and golfers are happier.”
For more information, visit www.canongategolf.com.