The Groundsman

July 2016

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MAINTENANCE CALENDAR 46 the Groundsman July 2016 Visit for more information and digital editions AUGUST OPERATIONS Bowling greens • Irrigation will be a key component in ensuring good playing surfaces are maintained, but be careful not to apply too much otherwise the surfaces will still be wet for the morning start of play. • Continue to mow at 5 mm and include a double cut for those important matches and, remember, when conditions allow aerate and irrigate first. Good green speeds can be achieved by consistent mowing at 5 mm. • Rotate rinks and sides regularly to accommodate high levels of use, ensuring wear is spread as evenly as possible over the green. • An application of fertiliser will invariably take place this month. Typically this will be an 8:0:0 (inorganic nitrogen) product applied at 34g/m 2 . P and K will depend on soil analysis and sward assessment results. Plan so that work does not interfere with play. Consider an evening application with a good watering in; then it has all night to wash into the surface - and don't forget to aerate beforehand. Cricket square • The ends can be lightly forked over to a depth of 50 mm or so to produce a fine seed bed and a suitable grass seed applied. • The body of the renovated wicket can be scarified, aerated and spiked with a sarel spiked roller then oversown with a suitable grass seed mixture. The mixture content will depend on the level and standard of cricket being played. • Apply a suitable fertiliser to those wickets which have been taken out of use, to aid seed germination and sward establishment. Cricket outfield • Throughout this month continue to mow as required, removing the clippings. If the outfield surface is dry or there is a prolonged dry spell, lift the height of cut slightly to reduce sward stress. The standard height of cut will be 12-18 mm. • Ensure the outfield is checked regulary for worn areas and, if required, carry out localised repairs to these. Football • Keep moisture levels up to encourage good growth. • Feed the pitch with a liquid nitrogen fertiliser to help improve sward density. • Thin areas may also benefit from a light seeding and topdressing, though care will need to be taken if a herbicide application is being considered. • Keep up aeration to encourage moisture penetration into the soil profile; this will also reduce the chance of surface rooting. • August is also a good time to apply a fertiliser. An 11:6:9 or a similar type at 34-50 g/m 2 could be considered. For local authority pitches, a 20:10:10 or similar fertiliser is just as effective and will be cheaper, too. Rugby League • The playing season has been going on for seven months now so the pitch may be getting tired. Communication with the coaches is vital as bare areas can quickly appear if the rotation of drills is not advised. • Mowing – at 30 mm every day, plus a once weekly cut at 25 mm to cut off the annual meadow grass seed heads. • Aeration – vertidrain bi-weekly going down to a maximum depth of 12 inches with 4 inch spacings to aid drainage and root development. • Fertilising – generally using 12+0+9 or a 14+2+4, 12 x 25 kgs. • Brush every morning using a tractor- mounted dragbrush, this will help stand the grass up and eliminate morning dew. • Spraying – an application of wetting agent will be required. Try to time this just after a vertidrain then water in afterwards. An application of fertiliser could also be applied. Rugby Union • Mow at 30 mm every day plus a once weekly cut at 25 mm to remove annual meadow grass seed heads. • Aeration – vertidrain bi-weekly down to a maximum depth of 12 inches with 4 inch spacings. • Fertilise generally with 12+0+9 or a 20+10+10 if a flush of growth is needed, 12 x 25 kgs. • Brush every morning to help stand the grass up and eliminate morning dew. • Repairs – walk over and divot every day. • Spraying – an application of wetting agent plus liquid fertiliser. • Irrigate as often as possible as time constraints and training times allow – higher temperatures mean more water. Tennis • Now is typically the time that a fertiliser with a lower percentage of nitrogen is applied, especially on more lightly used courts. • Continue with routine maintenance, which will include mowing, grooming, brushing, irrigation and overmarking. • Where there are multiple tennis courts on site, try and take some out of use and renovate them prior to September. Horse racecourse • Routine maintenance work over the summer months will include the following: • Artificial/specific use of irrigation will be more frequent to produce a suitable firmness of ground for a race meeting. • Continue to divot and repair after each meeting. • Continue to mow regularly, with this forming a significant part of total work input. • Do not neglect mowing on courses that are rested over the summer. • A fertiliser application in late August might also be given to all, or part of, the course, this dependent on need and following a nutrient analysis. Golf course • A fertiliser application on the greens will most likely be given during this month. Typically one would be an 8:0:0 @ 34 g/m 2 nitrogen only. • While renovation will mostly be undertaken in September, a gradual process of renovation can start now. The extent of the work will depend on important competitions/matches, but operations such as micro-solid-tining, with 6 mm diameter tines, should be considered. This results in a minimally affected playing surface for only a short period of time. • Make use of this month to do some renovation because after September the soil and air temperatures drop rapidly.

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