A Quick Guide to Making the Fairways a Jewel in Your Golf Course

Whether you're in charge of maintaining a large golf course or a more informal place for friends to get a few swings in, keeping the fairways green and beautiful is a big part of your job. This is probably the part of any course that's the most visible to guests and one of the most important areas for playing as well. So, how can you make it the best for your players? Here is a handy guide to fairway lawn cutting to get the most out of your grass. 

The Cut

There are basically three grass cutting methods for fairways. These are:

  • Cross Cut. This pattern is formed by mowing once lengthwise -- from the tee to the green, then from the green back to the tee -- all across the fairway. Then, move to the sides and mow in the same pattern from the right to the left. The result should be a checkered pattern when the golfer stands at the tee. 
  • Stripes. Stripes are a slightly less popular pattern that is half the work of the cross cut. For this pattern, you mow in strips from the tee to the green but do not cross it with another mowing from side to side. Golfers at the tee will now see a sea of straight strips in light and dark shades.
  • Solid. The third lawn mowing variation creates a sea of one solid color -- light when viewed from one end and dark when seen from the other end. Creating this pattern may be better handled by a professional mowing service, though, because it usually requires more mowers working together. Accomplish this pattern by mowing from the tee to the green in only one direction so that all the grass blades are "bent" in the same way. Multiple, wide lawnmowers moving in concert as a group is the easiest way to make it work, but you can recreate the look by taking the time to move your mower (while it's not in the cutting position) around the tee and starting again from the tee. 

A Few Tips

To keep your fairway grass healthy, it's best to alter your mowing patterns between these three methods so that the blades aren't repeatedly bent in the same directions. This will help them stay strong enough to withstand the trampling of players and provide a better base for shots. In addition, vary your starting point -- even if only by six inches -- each time to avoid mowing ruts or paths in the same grass. 

No matter the size of your mowing staff or your course, using these simple patterns on a rotating basis will help you maintain a beautiful and strong fairway lawn throughout the year. For more tips, talk to a professional lawn care service like Williams Lawn Care & Landscaping, Inc.