Samsø Golfclub

Gennem Energi- og miljørigtige tiltag at gøre Samsø Golfklub til pioner i branchen – både i Danmark og i udlandet. Blive inspirations- og læringsplatform for andre golfklubber, uddannelser af greenkeepere og kommunale parkfolk.

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Samsø Golf Club - green, greener, greenest

Energy and environmental initiatives make Samsø Golf Club pioneered in the industry – both in Denmark and abroad. Meet chief greenkeeper Thomas Pihlkjær, who would like to test new solutions while enjoying nature.

Besser Kirkevej 248305 Samsø
Tel.: 86 59 22 18


Monday and Thursday at: 10.00 – 12.00.1/4 – 30/9

 open every day at.   8.00 – 14.00

Goodbye to poisonous spray drugs

Pihlkjær welcomes us at the workshop, where we have a longer talk about what it takes to drive the sustainable changeover on the golf course. Already when he took over the job in 2001, he knew he would avoid poisonous pesticides. Thomas has a background as a freelance gardener on Samsø and got himself spray-sick twice – a disease he describes as “hangover times a thousand.” The first step was therefore the import of environmentally friendly products such as organic fertilizer, which is cold-pressed seaweed and which smells like sea. Another measure is the micro-skins, which include: makes the grass stronger and promotes a green appearance while also fixing nitrogen in the soil so that it does not leach into the groundwater. A third measure is gut sheep – a breed that originates from the Viking Age – which grazes rough. From the start, Thomas has, as far as possible, avoided the use of chemicals that are harmful to health for employees, golfers and other visitors. “In the long term, spraying on Danish golf courses will be prohibited, and there will generally be tougher environmental requirements. I am really pleased to say that I have no problems with that, ”he emphasizes.

Hello to more nature

Thomas enjoys talking to people he otherwise would not and who comes to see the green golf course.
Eg. a number of ornithologists have been visiting to study the rare bird, red-necked patchwork that has settled with its two cubs in one of the golf course’s lakes. Other species such as new water salamanders, the preserved green seeds and partridges also enjoy side by side with hares and deer. It is not only wildlife that benefits from the sea water, which is also used to water greens. It is far better than groundwater because it is warmer and therefore does not stress the grass that has baked in the sun for a whole day.
“Today we have a thriving rough to look at every day. Nature changes all the time, and it is good for the eye, ”says Thomas with a big smile. The biodiversity on the golf course is among other things. increased due to the organic fertilizer. Attacks of insects on the golf courses is a challenge, as there may be several hundred larvae per square meter, and if not kept down, then the grass disappears.

The green initiatives at Samsø Golf Club


90% of the golf course areas never get fertilizer, while the 1.7 hectares of greens are fertilized once a month with 116 kg a year. It consists of turkey or chicken poultry. The organic fertilizer has many advantages, e.g. It ensures more moisture and stimulates microorganisms in the soil, it helps to break down organic matter and it gives dense and strong green grass.

Cold pressed seaweed produced in Ireland is used as a vitamin supplement for the grass, and it keeps diseases away while providing a nice green color. The darker the grass, the more it binds the heat, and if the temperature can be raised just one degree, the grass grows faster and the club can extend the season.


Micro-clover collects nitrogen from the air and fixes it so that it is not leached out in the groundwater, while at the same time enhancing its abrasion resistance and preventing weeds from closing at the bottom. Thus, the grass is also greener and sexier to look at. The golf club does not use micro-clovers
on greens, but elsewhere where it sown with grass. The annual savings by using micro-clovers instead of fertilizer is DKK 4200 per hectare, and thus micro-clovers reduce CO2 emissions by 185 kilograms per hectare annually. For 100 hectares, the reduction in emissions corresponds to the burning of 7,000 liters of diesel, production of 900 kilograms of meat or 162,000 kilometers driven in a Suzuki Swift 1.3.
Also, Tranebjerg sports ground in the middle of Samsø and a number of other playing fields in the country are experimenting

today with micro-clovers, because the municipalities no longer have to use pesticides (source: Prodana) .o.


Samsø Golfklub has a geothermal heat pump for the clubhouse heating system and solar panels produce energy for charging the machinery park. Samsø golf club has set the first sod to set up a smaller house windmill on the track, which produces electricity for the pumps to supply the large area and the pumps make sure to get water around all corners of the track. All this takes place in a closed circuit and the pumps are mobile with solar panels. Both sea water and surface water are used. The advantage of seawater is that it is warmer than groundwater and therefore does not cause the grass to creep due to cold shock. Water from the lakes is pumped up to the clubhouse and down to a water reservoir. In this way, all water is recycled, and a desirable side effect is that fertilizer residues are recycled. The lakes are very clean, and it witnesses the green seed that lives there in the best possible way. The course also has a beautiful fountain, which jumps at different heights when there is no need to water elsewhere.


All golf carts and several of the grass clippers are powered by electricity, and in addition to reducing CO2 emissions, it gives silence to the courses, which both employees and guests enjoy. Greens are cut every day 7 days a week.
     The latest greens clipper, a Jacobsen Eclipse 322 – which environmental minister Kirsten Brosbøll (S) ran in March 2014 – is fully solar powered.
     The club still has diesel-powered machines that have
got a loving environmental and energy optimization.

Gute sheep

34 gut sheep graze the large natural areas, a good acre at a time. The club has an agreement with a farmer,
who delivers them in the spring and then he gets them back
in the fall, after which they are run in a slaughterhouse. They are not organic because they are also hand fed, but the system is sustainable. The club members can order the sheep meat – and it is therefore not just about playing, but also
about eating golf!


Samsø Golf Club is one of the country’s most beautiful golf courses.

It is located on the cool mud in Langemark and Besser overlooking the Kattegat, and on the total of 73 hectares is an 18-hole golf course and a 9-hole pay and play, which is visited annually by 5000 green fee guests and has 500 members.

45 hectares are taken care of daily, some only every second or third day, while part of the remaining land is paths and roads or lies like wild nature.

In the season, the club employs 3-6 employees in addition to the chief greenkeeper.

Samsø Municipality, the Energy Academy, Grundfos and the local HVAC company Brdr. Star works together to replace all older pumps on Samsø. The municipality has already made a pump overview in all the municipal buildings and replaced them with more energy-efficient pumps.
At the Danish Energy Agency’s website, it is estimated that by replacing a traditional step-regulated small circulation pump, which is available in most private homes, with a stepless, adjustable and energy-efficient model, savings of on average SEK 790 / year and 170 kg / CO2 / year are saved.
The larger and older the pumps, the greater the savings and thus the faster payback time. The golf course uses the latest pump technology from Grundfos to pump water out for irrigation of greens. The club’s own solar cells and wind turbine produce electricity for the pumps, which when the sun shines and the wind blows, pumps water up to a collecting lake, from where it is pumped on to the irrigation of greens.

“Birds like rats and starlings also help keep the ankle bones down, and we try to put black plastic out in the evening, so the larvae think it’s night, then move it away quickly and cut away the larvae. We like to experiment, ”says Thomas.

Joy runs the place

It costs about 1.5 million DK per year to run Samsø Golf Club, and what saves on not using spray poison, uses the club instead of hourly wages to remove milk buckets. In other words, it is not the eco-environment that drives the green transition on the golf course, but the desire to try out new sustainable initiatives and the desire for a cleaner nature. ”It is quite exciting with the green transition and because we produce one leisure activities for a small part of the world’s population, we cannot justify at the same time destroying nature and animal life. Alone on our soil we have 40 breeding species, ”says Thomas. He also says that there are many who do not believe they do not spray – perhaps because most dandelions are actually removed.

The club gives golf players a milk bucket with around, and if everyone took a dandelion for each hole, then the paths were completely free. , so the players remove more. For Thomas Pihlkjær there is not far from words to action. “You do not necessarily have to do it all at once, but can test different measures one at a time. Sheep that graze do not cost much – you just have to have a fence so they can be moved around, and with us the regular players buy the meat when they are slaughtered after the season, ”he says. It is a win-win-win situation: For the club, nature and players.

Often, the transition is about introducing new procedures and changing routines. Because the club Running on electric machines, the trip around the lanes must be planned differently, so that you also utilize the ride down the hills and avoid running out of power far away from the charger. The powered vehicles are silent, and both players and employees must also get used to it. Because even though it is a big plus to get rid of the noise from the machines, which otherwise spoils the tranquility and nature experience, it can come as a shock when suddenly a vehicle is close.

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