Cuscowilla joins southern US march to ultradwarf bermuda greens


Cuscowilla joins southern US march to ultradwarf bermuda greens
Sean Dudley
By Adam Lawrence

The Cuscowilla course on Lake Oconee in Georgia will reopen this weekend after a two month closure to regrass its greens with Champion ultradwarf bermuda. Green surrounds, formerly 419 bermuda, have also been regrassed with the TifGrand strain.

Originally designed by Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw’s team, Cuscowilla has been working with local architect Scot Sherman on the regrassing project.

“I began advising the club, and its superintendent Sam Murphy, a long-time friend, last year,” said Sherman. “About a year before, I had met with Bill Coore on site and he had suggested several improvements, but when the club decided to go ahead with the project, Bill and his crew were too busy to work on it. So I have been assisting with the regrassing and working through most of Bill’s list of improvements.”

“Sam killed out the greens in late June, and the course closed after the fourth of July,” Sherman added. “You can imagine how fast they were for that last week! When the course closed, Sam core aerified all greens and topdressed with a desirable sand mix. This was truly a no-till where nothing was stripped after the bentgrass was killed to preserve the contours.

“All greens were originally surrounded by ample 419 bermudagrass fairway cut which was to provide many short game options. However, over the years it has been difficult to mow to a low height and allow the ball to roll. So, all of the old bermudagrass was stripped and resodded with about six acres of TifGrand bermudagrass to encourage firm, fast and smooth conditions. Ultimately this turf will be mowed at or below 0.300 inches and return the options around the greens.”

The Champion was sprigged into the greens during July, and the course will reopen on 7 September.