Frost on the course

PGA Fellow Professional

Frost on the course

Frost on the course

Frost on the course is a short golf blog post that investigates the problem that affects every golf course.

So, What is Frost? According to the MET Office, Frost occurs when the temperature of the air in contact with the ground is below the freezing point of water.

Ground Frost, which is common on golf courses can cause delays or even closure, depending on where you are in the world.


Just remember that the less stress that is put on the grass in winter will pay dividends during the summer.

Golfers should see the bigger picture! Always take the side of caution to help your club.


Golfers’ questions regarding frost
Why do golf courses delay the play or even close when Frost is present?

A frost can take anything up to 3 hours to lift, depending on where you are.

So-called ‘crunchy’ grass will be very vulnerable to damage.

Golf courses will close to help protect the grass from bruising. You may have witnessed this before. It looks like black footprints or trolley wheel markings.
Frost damage can take anything up to 72 hours before it is visible.

If there is any damage caused during frosty conditions, the golf course will take much longer to recover, in some cases it can be as long as months before full recovery is reached.

They will also protect the greens as much as possible to promote good conditions later in the year.

If the course is not protected correctly, the greenkeepers will have to do more dressing during the season to keep the greens healthy.

Why is the course still closed? The frost is gone!

It may seem that the frost has lifted but there will still be some delicate areas of the course.

Shady areas surrounding trees, North facing slopes, Closely mown areas of the course. These are all places that need extra protection.

The delay or closure will also depend on what type of grass is growing on the course. Fescues and bents need protecting the most as they really dislike being under stress. Meadow Grass or Poa is less vulnerable.


Remember that the more you play in winter, the more work will have to be done to help the course recover.
The more recovery work, the more expenses the club will have per year, which will relate to yet more increases in the green fees and subscriptions.

Check out the video below for an explanation.


What do you think about Frost on the course?

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Main image by ValeriaLu