The Masters flower show awaits

Just to get you in the mood for The Masters...find out why each hole is named after a flower! An alternative hole-by-hole guide to Augusta National

Ted Finnerty's picture
Martin Park
Mon, 19 Mar 2001

The Masters flower show awaits

The Berckmans family were proprietors of the Fruitlands Nursery on which Augusta National was created and each hole is named after an indigenous or imported shrub or flower in the Berckmans famous horticultural catalogue.

It was Louis Alphonse Berckmans, son of the original proprietor P.J.A. Berckmans, who, at the age of 74, returned to Augusta National to assist Bobby Jones and Cliff Roberts in adorning each hole with a plant for which it was named.

Louis, an agronomist by trade, was the first member of a new committee at Augusta, the Beautification Committee and it was he who decided where to locate the 18 varieties needed to compliment each hole on the course.

Some varieties of plant were already in-situ, but others needed careful consideration and had to be planted in the perfect spot so as they would not wilt and die.

Today, thanks to the sterling work of Louis Alphonse Berckmans, over 80,000 plants, covering 350 varieties have been added to the Augusta National Landscape making it a blaze of colour each spring around Masters week.

Here is a different guide to both the hole and the flower that can be seen in abundance on each hole.

Hole 1 Tea Olive. Par 4, 410 Yards
The Flower: Osmanthus fragrans, native to Southern Asia, is an evergreen shrub or small tree belonging to the Olive Family. Its intermittent displays of small white flowers from December to March are delightfully fragrant and the Tea Olive attains a height of 16 to 20 feet.

The Hole: A slight dogleg to the right and one of two par 4 holes with the 18th that requires a faded tee shot. Drives to the left may catch the trees. An ideal starting hole with a bunker guarding half the green. The hole was changed for the 1970 Masters by moving the fairway trap about 10 to 15 yards further out from the tee to make the bigger hitters think about the hole more and not bully it into submission. And the tee was moved a bit to the right to make room for an enlarged spectator mound between

Hole 2 Pink Dogwood. Par-5 575 Yards
The Flower: Cornus florida rubra, is an American contribution to the world of ornamental horticulture. This tree is a mutation propagated by grafting onto a white dogwood seedling. Depending on weather, the tree blooms late March through April. This hole is flanked by masses of

these colourful native trees.

The Hole: The longest of the National's par 5 holes but is often reached in two to set up early eagle and birdie chances. The danger is in avoiding the fairway bunker from the tee shot to the point of venturing into the sharp drop off into the trees at the left on the inside of the dog-legged fairway. Last year, the second hole was lengthened 25 yards. The championship tee was moved back into woods near a service road. The fairway bunker was shifted to the right, creating a wider landing area.

Hole 3. Flowering Peach. Par-4, 350 Yards
The Flower: Prunus persica is native to China. The flowering varieties are cultivars developed for their showy blossoms and not their fruit. The flowers

may come in white, pink, red or variegated colours, and usually bloom from mid to late March.

The Hole: The shortest par 4 hole with a small L-shaped table-top green that requires the utmost delicacy with the approach shot. The Sunday pin position is usually on the left, the arm of the "L." The smart play is to lay-up short of the bunkers to have a full shot into the precarious green.

Hole 4 Flowering Crab Apple Par-3, 205 Yards
The Flower: Malus hybrida These flowering crab apples are Far Eastern varieties which have a more prolific flowering habit than native American forms. The trees bloom in late March and early April with light pink to

deep rose flowers followed in the fall by colourful one-inch apples, a popular food for many wild birds.

The Hole: The first of Augusta National's infamous short holes that can require a wood shot even from the long hitters. The wind is always deceptive at this hole and the green, though wide is easily missed with a two or three iron in hand. Up and down is very difficult.

Hole 5 Magnolia Par 4, 435 Yards
The Flower: The magnolia is synonymous with Augusta National. The botanical

name Magnolia grandiflora is descriptive of the massive evergreen tree with large fragrant white flowers which bloom in May and June. Deciduous imported varieties are also present.

The Hole: An uphill dogleg left hole with a sloping green. The trick here is to bounce your approach shot onto the green, allowing the ball to stop on the upper level where the pin is always placed. Placing the ball on the lower level that collars the front of the green can leave some unbelievable putts. Miss long and you find another huge bunker.

Hole 6 Juniper. Par 3, 180 Yards
The Flower: Juniperus virginiana is a native evergreen

tree. Commonly called Red Cedar, it is not a true cedar. The aromatic wood makes it popular for storage chests and other furniture. Younger trees are used extensively in the South as Christmas trees.

The Hole: An elevated tee looks down on this hole with a giant hump at the right of the green. The pin position at the top of the hump is one of the most difficult on the course.

Hole 7 Pampas Par 4, 360 Yards
The Flower: Cortaderia selloana

or Pampas grass is Native to Argentina. It shoots up its plume-like flowers in August and the seed tassels lasting until spring.

The Hole: The best line for the tee shot is up the left centre of the fairway. It is a tight tee shot and the green, small and difficult to hold, is surrounded with sand, as is no other hole at Augusta.

Hole 8 Yellow Jasmine. Par 5, 535 Yards
The Flower: Gelsemium sempervirens is a twining vine native to the Southeast of the United States. The trumpet-shaped flowers

bloom yellow from the first warmth in February into late March.

The Hole: Like all the par 5 holes at the National, this one can be reached in two but the fairway bunker must be avoided along with all the trouble on the left side. It is normally a birdie hole for most players, but the new green, which nearly duplicates the original one, puts some spice into the hole. Bruce Devlin scored the second albatross in Masters history here in 1967.

Hole 9 Carolina Cherry Par 4, 435 Yards
The Flower: Prunus caroliniana is a small native evergreen tree. The plant bears prolific clusters of small, white flowers in April

followed by black berries, which are popular with a variety of birds.

The Hole: A downhill dogleg left which is best known for its green that slopes heavily back to front. Many downhill putts have slipped off the edge, notably Scott Hoch's in 1996. The second shot being to an elevated green on which it is difficult to judge just where the pin is located.

Hole 10 Camellia. Par 4, 485 Yards.
The Flower: Camellia japonica is a classic flowering evergreen shrub belonging to the Tea Family, and is native to China and Japan. The Berckmans imported plants from Japan, France, England, Germany and Belgium, and listed 42 named varieties in P.J.A. Berckman’s catalogue of 1890. Blooming period and colour vary depending on variety (November through March). Both the japonica and sasanqua species are in abundance on this hole.

The Hole: television never does this hole justice. At 485 Yards, it is par 5 length, but with a huge downhill tee shot, it reduces yardage significantly. The fairway encourages a drawn tee shot, which can kick off the hill, and produce tremendously long drives. But a drive hit too far to the right can require long second shots off a slanted lie. Famous for Scott Hoch's missed two-footer against Nick Faldo in 1989. "This one for all the marbles" he said before he missed it!

Hole 11, White Dogwood. Par 4, 455 yards
The Flower: Cornus florida var. plena are one of the most popular flowering trees native to the Eastern U.S. Shiny red berries in August and colourful foliage follow the flowers, which bloom in late March and early April, in the fall, making it the aristocrat of flowering trees in southern landscapes.

The Hole: Traditionally, the beginning of Amen Corner and the first of the water holes. Most golfers play their second shot to the right for the edge of the green or beyond trusting to a long putt or a chip shot to get close enough for par. Nick Faldo won his first two green jackets in play-offs at this hole in 1989 and 1990. There have been changes this year with the green raised approximately 2 feet and the pond a foot. A new bunker just right of the green replaced the two bunkers on the right side of the green. Also, Rae's Creek, which fronts the 12th green was widened by one-half to accommodate flood control and the front left of the green was expanded slightly.

Hole 12 Golden Bell Par 3, 155 Yards
The flower: Forsythia intermedia are a hardy, deciduous shrub native to the Far East and belonging to the Olive Family. It has become one of the more popular spring flowering shrubs in America and in the UK, as few plants can match its brilliant display of yellow flowers in March and early April.

The Hole: Famous throughout the world for its reputation of winning and losing a Masters. It is he shortest and maybe the deadliest hole at Augusta. Rae's Creek guards the narrow, canted green and the swirling and often undetectable wind makes club selection a lottery. Players might have the right club at the top of their backswing, but the wind changes so quickly around the trees, by impact it is the wrong one. Some players have been lucky at this hole, notably Fred Couples in 1992 when his ball defied gravity. Others like Greg Norman suffer the fate. A shot from one trap at the back toward the water is one of the more frightening shots in tournament golf. It is reputed that Alistair Mackenzie took the design of the seventh hole at Stoke Poges in Buckinghamshire and transported it to Augusta National.

Hole 13 Azalea. Par 5, 465 Yards
The Flower: This hole bears the name of the plant for which Augusta National is most noted. This Rhododendron specie may be seen in many forms on the course with over 30 varieties present. Native species and many of the rare older plants are also present. The flowering period will range from

March to mid-April. From tee to green, this hole is flanked on its south side by a mass of azaleas, which includes many different species.

The Hole: Short for a par 5, but jealously guarded by a little creek that runs along the left side of the fairway before crossing just in front of the green and running past it to the right, barely off the putting surface. It can be reached in two by the long hitter with as little as a middle iron. Tiger Woods hit a wedge into this hole during 1997. But if the embankment is shaven, anything remotely short finds a watery grave.

Hole 14 Chinese Fir Par 4, 405 Yards
The Flower: The exotic Cunninghamia lanceolata, native to China, is an unusual evergreen. The flowers are inconspicuous green catkins, which are followed by an ornamental cone, and the older foliage remains dry and dead on the branches for several years. It is a highly prized tree in China and Japan being

very useful for lumber and woodworking.

The Hole: This is the only hole on the course without a bunker and scene of Greg Norman's collapse last year when he missed the fairway right against Olazabal. A fairly straight hole with trouble on the putting surface. A large hump runs across the front of the green, which is three-putt country.

Hole 15 Firethorn Par 5, 500 Yards
The Flower: Pyracantha coccinea is one of the most prolific bearers of orange/red berries. It belongs to the Rose Family and in April is covered with numerous small, creamy white flowers which in turn form the brilliant berries. The name Firethorn comes from the multitude of thorns that cover the branches. It is native to Southern Europe.

The Hole: Gene Sarazen made his famous albatross here in 1935, the so-called "shot heard around the world". The landing area for the tee shot has been modified over the years and now presents one large mound and several smaller ones, reducing the width to only 30 yards. The tee remains close to where it began, slightly to the right of the original. Large mounds in the landing area of the fairway were reduced approximately 80-85 percent and 20 pine trees approximately 35 feet high were planted on the right side. On the left side, a group of about six trees were added behind the existing large trees. Also, a large mound on the right of green was removed and replaced by six pine trees.

Hole 16 Redbud. Par 3, 170 Yards
The Flower: Cercis canadensis is a small tree native to the Eastern United States. Commonly called the Judas tree,

its flowers are orchid pink rather than red. It is a member of the Legume Family. The showy, small flowering tree blooms from early March into April.

The Hole: An intimidating hole coming late in the round. The green is heavily mounded and the Sunday pin position is a "Suckers" pin placement. But shots out to the right will feed downhill and close to the flag.

Hole 17 Nandina Par 4, 425 Yards
The Flower: Nandina domestica, sometimes called Heavenly Bamboo, is an oriental shrub. Often located near the doors of Japanese homes, it is a good luck symbol that is supposed to mediate family disputes. The foliage shows varying degrees of colour ranging from copper to green to red. With its white blooms in May and spectacular red berries from fall to winter, the Nandina can show varying colours year round.

The Hole: Ike's Tree stands sentinel on the left side of the fairway and with a new tee this year, it will come into play and haunt players just like it did the Former President of the USA Dwight Eisenhower. And the new green slopes off toward the back, making it nearly impossible to hold an approach carried past the centre of the green. The new pine clusters right of the 15th fairway will also come into play right of the 17th fairway in the landing area. An even tougher finish than before.

Hole 18, Holly. Par 4, 405 Yards
The Flower: Ilex opaca, American Holly, is a medium sized native evergreen tree. The tree bears inconspicuous flowers, with only the female tree able

to produce berries. The fruit begins to turn red in the fall and persists into the winter.

The Hole: Scene of many wins and losses. Sandy Lyle pulled off the impossible in 1988 when he made birdie after finding the fairway bunker off the tee. This uphill dogleg right is one of the most famous finishing holes in golf and a Masters is never over until the last putt is safely in the hole, ask Ian Woosnam.



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