Greenkeeper's Course Report

The Course


Producing a sustainable golf course

How do we at Kirkcudbright measure up, environmentally and with sustainability?  As a local amenity we must realise that we are merely custodians of a wonderful space, overlooking a beautiful estuary.

It is our duty to improve the area as a golf course, but also to have responsibility for the greater good of all who use and admire the area, including the indigenous wild life.


We all have our own thoughts on Sustainability.  Head Greenkeeper John has to balance the needs of the members with his budget, this can only be achieved in an ethical way by making choices.  The first move was the proposal by John to install cylinder grinders to improve maintenance.  This reduces the need for outside contractors.  The next move being, how much do we cut?  Not just time, but fuel, and consideration for fauna and wildlife. The next time your ball disappears never to be seen again and you shout "why is this not cut!" perhaps you will give a second thought.


So what are the Goals?

1. A Golf Course that is maintence friendly.

2. A Golf Course that is friendly to the environment.

3. A workplace that is as self-sufficient as possible.

4. The improvement of turf quality.

For up to date detail of work on the Course see the regular Club Newsletter

Below are a few points that are current to our position just now as well as a link to further information through the R and A (The Royal and Ancient).

Golf course maintenance design and standards are continuing to improve within the turf industry to adapt to the current golf environment.  For example golf course design has moved from the eighties/nineties elevated box shaped tees style to more rounded with gentle sloped tees. These are designed to reduce staff cost and machinery costs (fuel/oil etc).  This design allows machinery to perform to its potential and promote a higher standard of turf.

Machinery design and development is also changing.  From just having one machine designed for a set area at a set height of cut, machines are now developed to be highly productive and have the ability to cut more undulating areas at a lower height of cut.  Newer machinery now have higher number of cutting decks and more horsepower to deal with the extra demands of cutting wet grass.


For further details the R and A provide detailed information on producing a sustainable golf course: visit


John Houston

Head Greenkeeper