Pinehurst News

Inside the Pinehurst greenhouse

By Sarah Campbell
Pinehurst Resort

It looks like spring inside the Pinehurst greenhouse well before the season arrives.

The first batch of bulbs are delivered at the start of February. By the end of March, the 17,000-square-foot facility is filled with flowers as far as the eye can see.

About 250,000 annuals are grown inside the massive structure each year. Half of those are planted during the spring.

“We grow all the annuals for the grounds, including the clubhouses at No. 6, 7, 8 and 9,” Grounds Assistant Superintendent Chris Jones said.

Up to 10 different plants, including dwarf zinnias, begonias, marigolds and black-eyed Susans, are grown for the spring season.

“We rotate plants from year to year and grow different colors of the same plants to mix it up,” Jones said.

Fall is slightly less hectic, although the same number of flowers are planted.

“It’s mostly pansies,” Jones said. “Our spring is a little busier because we do some propagation ourselves.”

The plants spend about 6 to 8 weeks inside the greenhouse before being put out on property.

Jones and a team of three full-time staffers handle the greenhouse operation.

“We do all the watering and all the fertilizing by hand,” he said. “There’s also a lot of spacing that’s done because some plants require extra space to grow to the correct size.”

When it’s time to plant the bulbs, the greenhouse team typically receives a helping hand from the grounds crew.

“About 15,000 bulbs may be delivered in a day, so we come and help put the plugs into pots,” Grounds Superintendent Chris Burrows said.

Greenhouse 12

Betty works on the potted plants to go outside the Tennis Club.

The greenhouse staff also stays busy tending to the plants that go inside the 150 clay pots throughout the property. You’ve probably seen them around the pool and at the entrances to the spa, tennis club and clubhouses.

“We try to get all those out by Mother’s Day,” Jones said.

Betty is in charge of putting together all the potted plants, a duty she takes pride in. It’s tricky business since some of the pots are positioned in shady areas, but it’s a labor of love.

“I really enjoy it,” she said. “It’s gratifying to see how they turn out.”

When Betty is done with the potting, she spends the bulk of her time out on property tending to the interior plants.

“I do all the shining and watering to make sure they look nice for guests,” she said.

One whole section of the greenhouse is used to care for interior plants like the ficus trees used to spruce up event space.

Burrows said it’s convenient to have the greenhouse on site to cater to each group’s specific needs.

“Not every place has something like this in their backyard,” he said.

Greenhouse 6

Pinehurst’s first greenhouse was constructed with plywood back. Today’s greehouse is made of polycarbonate plastic.

Pinehurst has had a greenhouse since Burrows began work here in 1996.

“I think they built the first one around 1993 or 1994,” he said. “It was really primitive with plywood that made up the sides of it.”

Today’s greenhouse is built with polycarbonate plastic that provides good light transmission. It is equipped with a fan system to circulate air throughout the structure.

Burrows said technology has grown “leaps and bounds” throughout the past 20 years.

“All the controls are electronic now,” he said. “We used to have an old school dial.”

Those controls help regulate the temperature within the greenhouse. It hovers around 72 degrees during growing seasons.

Jones has had to get inventive to help plants that require a lot of sunlight grow during the winter. He added a large tube that pumps heat into a small plastic-covered area that houses the plants.

“It inflates and looks like a giant plastic burrito, but it works,” he said.

Sarah Campbell is the Resort’s content & social media specialist. 




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Phil Mickelson’s most painful U.S. Open loss

Sports Illustrated’s Alan Shipnuck has a new podcast, In the Rough, and the debut edition features Phil Mickelson’s caddie, Jim “Bones” Mackay. On it, Shipnuck poses a tough question:

Which of Mickelson’s six U.S. Open runner-up finishes was the most painful?

The answer might surprise you: It’s not Winged Foot.

“It’s probably a tie,” Mackay says. “I would say between Shinnecock in 2004 and Pinehurst in 1999. Just because he played so amazingly well in both of them.”

Mackay explains, and is recounted by’s Coleman McDowell:

The 1999 U.S. Open was the memorable duel between Mickelson and Payne Stewart where Stewart won by a single stroke.
“At Pinehurst, it was so surreal,” Mackay says. “You’re out there in the mist, and it’s like being on a movie set. At that point, he hadn’t won a major, and Amy was incredibly pregnant. Phil played so incredibly well and got beat by a guy who made the greatest par putt I’ve ever seen on 16, then birdied 17 and made a putt on 18. It was a tough pill to swallow.”

Mackay, it turns out, blames himself for Mickelson’s short birdie miss on 17:

“Phil brought me in for the read,” Mackay says. “We both thought it was pretty straight. He hit the putt, and I’ve only seen it once or twice on video, but it broke definitively to the right and didn’t go in. Payne makes the birdie putt to go one ahead, which was the difference in the tournament. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about that, and if I had a do-over in my career, it would be that read.”


Shipnuck tries to smooth it over:

“I asked Phil,” Shipnuck says. “He says he pulled it.”
“Did he really?” Mackay says. “There you go, I’ve never asked him. That’s not something you talk about with your player there in the moment.”


Please check out the podcast below. Great stuff:

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10 reasons to treat her to a Pinehurst gift card

PinehurstSpaGiftcardBow (1)

10. You really want to play that extra 18 holes.

9. Mother’s Day is just around the corner.

8. The big game is on Saturday.

7. Too large or too small, you just can’t win buying her clothes.

6. You forgot your anniversary…again.

5. You break out in hives upon entering the ladies department.

4. Poker night.

3. To make up for the vacuum cleaner gift episode.

2.  It’s like a get out of jail card for honey-do’s.

1. Because no one else deserves it more than she does.

The best thing about a Pinehurst gift card? She can use it to play a round of golf, escape to the spa, enjoy an excellent meal with her girlfriends or pick up some new golf gear from our pro shop.

Gift cards are available online, at the Spa at Pinehurst and at Resort shopping outlets. Click here to buy.


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Our new favorite college golfer

As host to the North & South Amateur Championships, we meet and enjoy getting to know many college golfers.

We might have a new favorite, though.

In a great find by GolfNewsNet’s Ryan Ballengee, check out the trick shot video by Arizona State golfer Mathias Schjoelberg:

Getting good at the shots I’ll never need. #golf #golfer #asu #asugolf #sundevils

A video posted by Mathias Schjoelberg (@mathiasschjoelberg) on

  Insane, right? But, as you might expect, Mathias has more. So many more. Including an even better angle of the above shot:  

Close enough #golf #golfer #asu #asugolf #golfgods A video posted by Mathias Schjoelberg (@mathiasschjoelberg) on


We’re not even sure what he does here:

Need to play around a bit as well! #golf #trick #golfer #pgatour #GolfGods

A video posted by Mathias Schjoelberg (@mathiasschjoelberg) on

… Continue Reading

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Dude, it’s just a hat…but we’re here to help

If you haven’t seen this video already, well, give it time. It’ll be everywhere this weekend.

As you can see in the clip, we have a spectator at the LPGA’s LOTTE Championship who has chased his wind-blown hat into the water. The beer slipping out of his pocket only adds to the insanity of it all. Finally, he grounds his face into the hazard, which of course should result in another penalty of some sort.

Now, a few things here to think about:

1. We pick up the video and he’s already waist deep in water.

This is interesting. This means the hat blew off his head somewhere on the opposite side of the fairway. So the hat goes, and then the guy seems to think it’s OK to duck under the gallery rope* and race all the way across the fairway of a professional golf tournament.

*Granted, we’re only guessing here, but considering his athletic level on display later in the clip, envisioning this guy going OVER the gallery rope is not only unlikely, but virtually impossible.

2. The beer. Let’s talk about the beer.

The beer falls out of his pocket. Judging by the way it floats, it must be empty, right? But who carries around an empty beer can in his pocket? Especially a 16-ounce can. Especially when you have to go under a gallery rope, 75 yards across a fairway and into a pond.

But then again, how does that can, if empty and after all that trauma, not crinkle? Look at it. It appears to be in perfect condition. Was it half full at one point, losing its contents during the Great Hat Chase? Did the guy, in the split-second he had to process his plight when the hat blew off, really decide pocketing the beer was his best option?

Unless it’s unopened. Which means he couldn’t possibly allow a perfectly crisp cold beer behind just for anyone to pick up, right? Who does that? Certainly not this guy. Which means he probably had just bought it, then the wind picked up, off his hat went, and he after it. His only choice was to pocket the beer.*

*After closer inspection (which took 127 isolated viewings), there’s no splash when the can falls. It has to be empty. We’ll need to test this.

3. Tom Abbott is a genius.

His call here is pitch-perfect.

4. Finally, the hat.

Most of us watching this would argue it’s not worth suffering the indignity of what ultimately transpired for a measly hat. But this is a guy who wasn’t going to leave what might have been a half-filled beer behind at the rope. So you know he HAD TO GET THAT HAT BACK.

But we get it. Guys like their hats.

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That’s just one of Pinehurst’s hat displays in the main Golf Shop. So, here’s the thing.

If for some reason this guy stumbles upon this post (and, well, can prove it’s him), we’re offering him a brand new Pinehurst hat. On us. Granted, our selection of the straw, wide-brimmed variety is limited, but we do have pretty great weatherproof bucket hats.

And they have straps.



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