Even if you’re not a golfer, the story of the Bobby Jones Golf Course is an interesting one, and any homeowner who has struggled to maintain a lawn can certainly appreciate the challenge given to superintendent Kyle MacDonald, tasked with maintaining the renovated course’s approximately 75 acres of newly laid sod.
A Historic Course
Atlanta’s very first public course, the Bobby Jones Golf Course was originally built in 1932 by the city of Atlanta in dedication to Jones, who had recently won the grand slam. After decades of use, the course had become unsafe, and playing conditions no longer met the expectations of most golfers, so the Bobby Jones Foundation formed to raise funds for a renovation.
The unique nine-hole reversible course with a driving range and teaching facility will open on November 5. Multiple tees and large double greens will offer seasoned golfers versatility and an 18-hole experience. And growing the sport will be emphasized through a focus on juniors and adaptive golf.
The Course Grass
MacDonald and his team appropriately chose two grasses developed in Georgia to better withstand the state’s harsh summers. “The fairway and rough grass is TifTuf, which was supplied to us by NG Turf, and we used TifEagle, an ultradwarf Bermuda grass, on the greens,” he said.
“Being on state land, with water such a limited resource right now, and wanting to be stewards of the environment, we chose to be environmentally friendly with the grass that we picked,” MacDonald recalled.
TifTuf, developed by the University of Georgia for use by homeowners as well as golf courses, has been proven to use 38% less water and retain 95% more green leaf tissue during drought stress than other Bermuda varieties.
Choosing NG Turf
“I already had a relationship with NG Turf,” MacDonald explained. “They grow good quality sod, and the customer service is great.” He says choosing the right turfgrass supplier was crucial to the project.
In addition to good pricing, MacDonald went on to say that the ability to deliver the vast quantity of sod required was vital. “We had such a tight window, and there was no concern about a shortage of turf,” he said. “We sprigged around 45 acres and sodded another 30 acres or more, and NG Turf was able to do that.”
MacDonald also appreciated our expert staff. “I’ve known Merett for a while; she is very knowledgeable. Mark came out and did all the sprigging with his crew, and we were able to pick his brain and get a lot of insight on the grasses.”
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