It's long been observed that the quickest way to subtract strokes from your game is to improve your putting. While nothing will substitute for the real thing, building your own putting green is a wonderful way to easily practice from the comfort of your own home. By using turf, you can recreate the feel of a green without the intense groundskeeping required of actual golf courses. For some, this may seem like a daunting and difficult task. It is quite manageable if you have the right tools and landscaping know-how. It is quite labor intensive, however, so remember that before starting the project. When done correctly, building your own artificial turf putting green can bring much fun and enjoyment for the entire family.
Difficulty: Moderately Challenging
Map out your area. Find an area in the backyard (or wherever you are doing this) that is big enough for this project. Ideally you want it to be the same shape and size of a traditional putting green, but a more compact straight green will also work. Also, find an area that sits away from any structure and doesn't collect water when it rains.
Clear out the areas. Remove all objects, including grass and other debris. You are now ready to shape the green and loosen the soil. Shape the green for how you will put down the turf that will house the putting area.
Wet the dirt only slightly. Use a plate compactor to compress the damp soil until it is smooth and firm. Take the landscape fabric and roll it over the compressed soil.
Edge the green. You can do this with an edging or block border, whichever is more comfortable to handle.
Place your crushed stones or other base materials. Distribute the materials evenly over the landscape fabric with the metal rake. Make sure that the green is properly sloped 1 inch every 12 feet. Repeat step 3 on the base material this time, instead of the soil.
Install cups in the base material. Do this by digging holes that are 2 inches wider and 6 inches deeper than the cup. You will need to install two or three cups. Once you are done digging the holes, set a cup in the middle of each hole and pour quick-drying concrete around them. Be sure to leave at least 1 inch of the cup left exposed. Wait until the concrete is dry and cover the cups with more base material.
Smooth out any ridges in the base material with a shovel. Coat the smoothed base material with sand. First drop the sand with a drop spreader then sweep it across the base.
Lay the turf roll. Start at the edge of green and continue to roll over the entire green, making sure to smooth out all the creases. Join any pieces with outdoor adhesive or tape if your green is wider than 12-foot turf roll. Tuck in the edges.
Get out the drop spreader again and spread infill sand over the turf. Make sure that the sand is properly distributed by sweeping it. You may have to repeat this step several times until the green is fully filled with infill.
Remove any infill from the green. Do this by sweeping across the grain. Make sure to get any excess and expose 1/32-inch of the turf.
Find the spots where you installed the cups. Take the utility knife and cut around the inside of the cup to remove the turf in these areas. Be sure to trim the edges.
Finish up by rolling the green with a water-filled roller. This is very important to ensure the green's speed, so roll several times.