A Dorset golf course is introducing a turf that fills in divot holes by itself thanks to innovation from British Seed Houses.
Parley Golf Centre in Bournemouth is developing a nine-hole extension to its course and chose AberCharm slender creeping red fescue grass seed, a UK bred cultivar exclusive to British Seed Houses.
AberCharm has a very high shoot density which enables the stolons to spread rapidly to repair holes left by divots. While golfers will still be encouraged to replace divots, the use of AberCharm in the grass seed mixture will mean hardier fairways.
It will also be used in future on the course's existing nine holes as part of the centre's improvement plans. The turf is designed to be tough and durable, but look no different.
British Seed Houses will also supply perennial ryegrass mixture A5 Aber-Ryegolf for the tees at Parley and AberRoyal brown-top bent grass for the greens. All the varieties used have been bred and grown in the UK.
Hugh Dampney, owner of the golf centre, said: "We are always striving to improve the course here. With permission granted to extend the course, we want to use the best possible grasses.
"The fairway turf will be tough and durable, but also able to regenerate by itself.
"We will have different turf for the tees, fairways and greens and believe that Parley will develop into a centre of excellence in terms of the grass as well as all the other facilities."
Joe Hendy, area technical sales representative, from British Seed Houses, said: "We are the largest privately owned seed company in the UK and the only company selling British-bred turf grasses direct to the end user.
"Our breeding station works on agricultural varieties as well as varieties for sport, including golf.
"When Hugh explained his requirements to me, AberCharm was the obvious choice. It is UK bred for UK conditions and along with the other Aber varieties has always performed well in Hugh's turf mixtures. The unrivalled winter and summer greenness that AberCharm possesses helps the fairways retain an all year round green colour and keeps fertiliser inputs to a minimum.
"Another significant bonus with AberCharm is that along with many other 'Aber' varieties it is produced in the UK which reduces the seed miles that AberCharm has taken to reach the fairways at Parley Court and at the same time supports UK agriculture."
Aber® is a registered trade mark of Germinal Holdings Limited.