Photo Quiz: Uneven surface, worn area by tee

Can you identify the sources of these mysterious turf issues?


Problem A: Uneven surface

Image of a small pile of pale material next to a putting green collar.
Location: Eastern Europe
Turfgrass area: Putting green
Turfgrass variety: Bentgrass/Poa annua mix

Problem B: Worn area by tee

A patch of brown turf on a practice putting green
Location: Miami, Fla.
Turfgrass area: Tee
Turfgrass variety: 419 bermudagrass

Scroll down for answers.












Image of a small pile of pale material next to a putting green collar.

Problem A: Uneven surface

The uneven surface of this putting green may look like it was the victim of vandalism. However, it was the golf course superintendent who actually created these “doughnuts.” This course was closed for a full tee-to-green renovation, which included a new design and new lakes to be dug and lined. All the existing push-up greens would be excavated and USGA greens installed. After the closing, the golf course superintendent could not help himself from having a little fun in his utility vehicle, creating a couple of nice doughnuts on this putting green before a bulldozer demolished it.

Photo from John Mascaro’s collection. Unless you want to see all the photos from my collection, please email me additional photos for the Photo Quiz.

SeaDwarf paspalum putting green

Problem B: Worn area by tee

This photo of a worn area by this golf tee in Miami dates back to 1953. When golf carts were first commercially introduced on golf courses in the 1940s, they were gas powered and noisy. Even though they were marketed as a tool to help elderly or disabled players enjoy the game of golf, their noise on the golf course caused many clubs to ban them. In the early 1950s, a company called the Marketeer Co. developed a two-seat electric golf cart called the “Arthritis Special” that became an overnight success. With the new carts tooling around on courses, wear became a major issue, as shown in this photo. Eventually, cart paths and proper etiquette followed, but the early years caused many challenges for superintendents. Some still face these challenges 71 years later.

Photo from John Mascaro’s collection.


Editor’s note: Have a photo of an on-course anomaly? GCM would love to have a look! Email it to Photo Quiz author John Mascaro.

John Mascaro is the president of Turf-Tec International.