Home » 11 Greenkeeping Mistakes you don’t know you’re making

11 Greenkeeping Mistakes you don’t know you’re making

  1. Top-dressing
  2. Mowing too close
  3. Mowing with dull blades
  4. Mower set incorrectly
  5. Over fertilising
  6. Over watering
  7. Too little aeration
  8. Aerating deeper than 8 inches
  9. Not mowing frequently enough
  10. Putting the green “to bed” in autumn
  11. Continually treating symptoms and ignoring causes

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  1. Rob Moores - Grange Club says:

    I’ve just found this article “Eleven greenkeeping mistakes you don’t know you are making” and just shuddered. Looking at the list with the benefit of hindsight there was only overwatering that we weren’t doing and that was because we rely on rainfall.
    Five years ago at our AGM in March the Bowls Section were told that the club were struggling financially and that the greenkeeper had been let go the previous September. If we wanted to carry on bowling, we would have to maintain the green ourselves. Four of us “veteran” bowlers agreed to do this in spite of none of us having any experience whatever. After all, we had a mower didn’t we?
    And this is when the “fun” started. Every man and his dog had an opinion on what steps we needed to take. “Someone” knew a man who had done “something” with bowling greens and before we knew it, he was meeting us at the green and within an hour we found that we had localised dry patch, thatch, moss, needed to reseed small areas of the green and it needed fertilising. However, we weren’t to worry as he actually worked for a firm that sold all our requirements.
    He looked at the pitiful array of tools we had and enthused about the mower which he declared to be the “dogsbollocks.” So, we decided to mow the grass. Where to plug it in?? It was petrol!! Eventually we got it started and worked out how to get the blades going as well. And so four men went to mow (went to mow a meadow). Nice straight lines were to be the order of the day, and so we were off, literally as the mower had been left in Rabbit mode instead of Tortoise. We shot off across the green like an olympic relay team desperately trying to hold on to the mower and leaving a beautiful wavy line in our wake. Considering that our combined ages were 264 years we reckoned we had covered the 35 yards in a very creditable time.
    After we had cut the green three times, we knew that something was badly wrong with the mower. We were told that the blade was set at an angle, was blunt and was cutting at 3mm which explained the scalping and uneven cut.
    Halfway through the season the green had deteriorated badly and it was at this time that we discovered John’s guide on the internet and bought it. I ran copies for all of us and then E-mailed John to say we owed him more money for these copies. His reply was that the club is his customer and no additional monies were required and if we needed any further help after reading the book to get back to him. Which we do on a regular basis.we were getting complaints about its condition and running

  2. John says:


    Thanks for this amusing, but all too common story. I put this article up a while ago as a means for readers to find relevant articles quickly and it has proved to be a popular stop off point for many.

    Many clubs refuse to believe that their greens can be improved by actually spending less. We’ve become conditioned into thinking that there is a quick fix we can buy.

    After 4 or 5 decades of trying this, it’s time for clubs to admit that it’s not working.

    Albert Einstein, who I’m led to believe was quite a clever chappy, said something along the lines of:

    “if you keep doing what you’ve always done, don’t be surprised when you keep getting the same results”

    Deep eh?

    John Q

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