In the remainder of this series of short articles on the Performance Evaluation of the Bowling Green we will examine a range of factors that determine bowling green performance. Some of these factors are determined by their Visual properties and some are purely Functional and require more hands on action on the part of the greenkeeper to measure.
Each of these articles will be bite sized and give you one factor to appraise on your green. Today we’ll look at Uniformity
Turf Grass Uniformity
Uniformity is a visual estimate of how even the turf surface appears. This might sound like a very basic or even overly simplistic way to appraise something as technical as a bowling green, but it remains one of the most important skills a greenkeeper can master.
Over recent decades, greenkeeping has been over complicated by the need for companies to sell new products and equipment. While much of this is useful and has made the greenkeeper’s job easier in many ways, there has been a tendency to trust in technology at the expense of the basic skills of greenkeeping.
High quality, high performance turf will usually be uniform in appearance.
Factors that detract from Uniformity include the presence of bare areas, weeds and scars from disease, disorders and insect damage. Weeds in this sense could include unwanted grasses like Yorkshire Fog, Annual Meadow Grass or Rye Grass.
Even the desired grass species can cause problems with Uniformity when they develop irregular growth habits, causing grain or excessive thatch.
Poor Uniformity will tend to present as patchy growth or areas of varying colour and density on the green.
Any component of the turf surface (grass, weeds, bare patches, thatch etc) can and will often have a knock on effect on green performance.
At this stage we are simply making a visual estimate of the uniformity of our bowling green turf.
Next time we will move on to look at Density.
Meantime if you have any questions, please leave a comment below: