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  A grainy proposition

By Andy North
ESPN Golf Online

At PGA National, site of this week's PGA Seniors Championship, the greens are Bermuda. The biggest thing with Bermuda is you have to figure out what direction it grows, because there's defiinte grain. In Florida, most of the time, it grows toward the southwest and the setting sun. Sometimes it grows toward water. So getting the grain figured out is very important.

Quite often, you can actually look in the cup and see that there's a ragged edge. That's the direction the grain is going. When the grain is going one direction and they cut the hole, the edge that's going to get worn down is the edge the direction of the grain is growing because the root structure will be cut out along the edge.

There's another way to look at the grain. If you look at a green that's shiny and bright, that usually means it's downgrain. If you turn around the other way and look back into the grain, it's really dark. So you also can tell by color.

Then, when you're reading putts, you add or subtract a bit depending on the grain. If you have a putt that looks like it will be a left-edge putt and the grain is going from left to right, you'll probably have to aim an inch out of the hole, because the grain will take it a little more than the break that you read.

The real problem on Florida's grainy greens is when you have the break going one way and the green going the other way. Then it becomes a guessing game. Which is going to be the strongest? Will it be the hill or the grain? That's when you get really confused.

But in Florida, once you figure out what direction the grain is going, then you have a chance to make putts.

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