ARTICLES - OCTOBER 2007
Many golfers head south after they retire, but if you've
played golf in the Northeast or Midwest all your life,
you may be in for a bit of a surprise when you head out
for your first rounds in Florida or Arizona. The reason?
Most courses in the southern United States use Bermuda
grass on their greens, rather than the Bentgrass common
to colder climates. The difference can take some getting
Bentgrass has a softer and lighter texture than Bermuda,
which means that a Bentgrass putting surface is much
smoother and more uniform - it's almost like putting on
a soft pool table. Your ball will roll much truer on a
bent green, which means that you have to pay less
attention to the grain of the putting surface.
Bermuda, on the other hand, is a wiry grass whose grain
makes for a slower putting surface, and also accentuates
both the break and speed of your putts. For this reason,
you need to know which way the grain is running relative
to your golf ball.
Stand behind your golf ball on the green and check the color
of the grass between your golf ball and the hole. If it's
light or silvery, you're putting with the grain and your
putts will roll faster and break harder than normal.
You'll want to ease up on this type of putt and play for
more break than you think you have. But if the grass
appears to be dark green, you're putting against the
grain and your ball will roll slower than usual. Hit
these putts a little more firmly, and play the break as
you read it
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