How to Build a Putting Green

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How to build a putting green?

A putting green in your backyard with real grass might seem like a never-ending project. But it actually only takes a workweek during the summer vacation. Or if your children are ready to help, less than a workweek.

The rewards reaped from these efforts are much greater. You have your private putt practice on real turf-like conditions. You can have mini-tournaments with your friends.

How to Build a Putting Green with Real Grass?

Since putting green is a longstanding investment, you might as well have some gardening tools handy.

  • A hoe will be required to remove the native weeds and grass and dig up the soil.
  • A pickaxe can be used to break the tough earth in the intended area of the putting green.
  • A rake can be used to stir the soil.
  • Watering cans will be handy to water the grass as required.
  • A shovel is required for making drains and other purposes.
  • Gardening gloves are essential to keep your hands clean and unharmed


The location of the putting green is not simply based on your convenience or aesthetics. You should also consider the growth of the grass. For this you require a place with:

  1. Sunlight
  2. Air
  3. Percolation check
  4. Drainage
  5. Area

Sunlight: The green should be located in full view of the sun for optimum growth and performance just like in the golf course. Don’t let it be shadowed by a tall building.

Air: The putting should be properly ventilated just like the golf course is so that greens can grow healthy.

Percolation check: You need to check if the land has proper irrigation. Water is cardinal for the growth of any life on the soil.

Drainage: Low-lying areas with insufficient drainage should be avoided. Waterlogging will simply strangle the grass. You can check the drainage with a percolation test. You can shovel out the soil within a 2-feet narrow pit. Fill it with water and check how fast it drains. For clay-ridden soil which can still support the growth the drainage time should be 12-24 hours. For good soil, it’s under 12 hours.

Area: Plan out how big you want the putting green to be. Stake the borders of the intended area so that the goal is always in sight.

Soil Evaluation:

You should evaluate the soil to check if it’s suitable to grow the grass on. Sandy loamy soil is the best type of soil that supports grass root zone. Sand with a high concentration of clay is not suitable for growing the grass.

Soil which does not drain quickly is also not a good option. You can run the percolation test to check how well the soil drains.

Drainage System:

We cannot emphasize how important drainage is. There are two methods to ensure good drainage:

  • Contouring
  • Drainage Tiles

Contouring: You should shape the land such that the putting green doesn’t have any drastic low-lying areas where water could be held hostage.

Drainage Tiles: You should install drainage tiles or pipes to route excess water out of the putting green. Make multiple narrow channels at a maximum of 10 feet distance from each other. Place filter fabric at the 2-feet mark from the surface and place the drainage system over it. Level with gravel and then add soil.

This short video collage shows an efficient drainage system in the first few seconds:

Soil preparation:

Start the soil work in spring preferably. This gives the grass the best conditions to thrive.

  1. Use a hoe to dig up the soil at least 2 feet.
  2. Use a pickaxe to break through tough soil and rocks to install the drainage tiles.
  3. Use a rake or a tiller to stir the soil and aerate it. This provided better growth and consistent littering of the seeds.
  4. Line the borders with plastic to avoid weed growth in the soil.
  5. Spread out the soil evenly across the decided plot in step one. Use the plastic roller for smoothening and creating undulations.
  6. Use gardening equipment like a bulb planter to create a hole on the putting green where you can put a putting cup.

Planting grass:

Mix grass seeds with some sand if there’s a bird pecking problem. Seeding should be done at 0.5-pound seed per 1000 sq. ft…

This video provides more information about grasses and fertilization:

The better idea is to purchase rolled sod that can be rolled into the designated area. A sod solution was adopted in the video below. It significantly reduces work.

Fertilize and Water:

Fertilize the planted land with natural manure or fertilizer chosen for the particular grass type. Water the greens twice daily. Water is the primary nourishment at this point. Long-range sprinklers from home depot installed at the edge of the green should do the work.


Rent or buy a greens mower. The normal land mower is not capable of maintaining the grass height at ¼ inches which is optimum for the putting green. Walk with light steps while mowing the grass. In good time, the root network strengthens the soil and mows uniformly


Administer fungicide once a month to keep the weeds on the outside.

Putt cup and flag:

When the putting green is ready to play, insert a putting cup going ½ inch into the ground. Plant the flag through the cup. This ensures that the putting cup is level. Otherwise, it will spit up your golf ball


Although the maintenance of the putting green goes on for a while, the creation need not take that much time. Once you have the playing turf in your backyard it should tempt you to maintain it. It serves as a regular hobby for the seniors, a pass time for the weekend golfers, and an obsession for the touring golfer.

Let’s take a look at how to build a putting green.


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Dominic J. Leon
Dominic J. Leon. I am a golfer with a deep passion for golf right from my childhood. I have added unbiased product reviews for all the latest golf equipment from the market leaders. Follow me on: Facebook, Pinterest, Linkedin, Tumblr.
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