Golf Course Frost Delays

Frost Delay on golf course

When temperatures drop overnight causing frost to form on the fairways and putting greens we choose to implement a ‘Frost Delay.’

When the golf course runs a frost delay it normally pushes back all the tee times until the ground has warmed up enough for the frost to melt.  

Reasons for Golf Course Frost Delay

We’re coming into that frosty time of year here in Upstate New York. Although golf course turf is normally resilient to traffic, when ice crystals form inside the plants, they become brittle and vulnerable to damage.

If frost on the course is ignored and regular play commences it will cause damage to the playing surface and makes the grass susceptible to disease and weeds.

Walking or driving over frost-covered grass may rupture plant cells, leading to dead turf. Or the plants may be weakened without immediately showing the effects. It can take grass more than a month to recover from this damage. 

The average foursome will take approximately 300 steps on each putting green. And with the effects of walking on the grass not being seen immediately the average golfer may not understand the importance of a frost delay.  On average the effects of frost damage are not seen until 48 to 72 hours after the membrane damage has occurred, causing the grass to turn brown and die.

If frost remains in areas that are unavoidable early in the round, the course must remain closed. It is also important to remember that once the frost is totally clear, the maintenance staff will need time to catch up on course preparations before play can begin. 

There will be a frost delay at Hartford Greens Country Club any time the temperatures are below 32 degrees and frost is on the course. We do not like delaying your play anymore than you like waiting, but we have to allow nature to take its course and prevent damage to our course. So, next time the temperatures drop into the freezing range, do yourself a favor and call the clubhouse to ask if there is a delay before heading out for your early tee time.

We hope to see you for a round soon! As always, thank you so much for your continued support!