A day on the putting green

A REQUEST to build a putting green in a customer’s backyard has created a business opportunity for one Perth landscape gardner.

R&J Garden Company partner Richard Crook said he had been approached by a customer in Dalkieth to do a major landscaping job on his property.

Besides other landscaping works, the customer wanted a putting green installed that would require a minimum of maintenance.

“He suggested these Pro-tech Greens from Arizona,” Mr Crook said.

A little research and some negotiation later, R&J Garden Company is now the WA agent for the Scottsdale, Arizona, company’s range of synthetic grass products.

The Pro-tech Green bears a striking resemblance to the real thing and, because it is not mounted on concrete the way astro turf is, people can chip golf balls onto it and it will react like a real putting green.

It is even installed in much the same way as a putting green. But the many maintenance requirements of a putting green, such as mowing, watering, fertilising, weeding and dethatching, do not come with the synthetic surface.

Mr Crook’s business partner, John Hulme, recently returned from a stint with Pro-tech in Arizona during which he learned how to instal the greens.

All the company is waiting for is some stock before it starts pushing the product into the WA market.

“There’s been quite a lot of interest in this product. I’ve got a couple to put in already,” Mr Crook said.

“All up it would probably cost between $6,000 and $7,000 to instal one of these greens into a backyard.”

According to Pro-tech’s website, professional golfers such as Sergio Garcia and Vijay Singh have the greens installed in their backyards so they can practise more often.

Besides the personal market, Mr Crook said he was hopeful of taking the product to golf clubs and mining companies – particularly in the State’s North West.

Anyone who has tackled the golf courses in towns such as Goldsworthy or Wickham can attest to the challenges of putting on a ‘black’ – a patch of sand coated with oil to serve as a green.

Mr Crook estimated that it had cost his company about $20,000 to take on the Pro-tech agency.

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