Turf Maintenance Planner: April

turf maintenance planner for aprilThis time of year is often the busiest for the majority of groundsmen and greenkeepers. Temperatures have begun to take off and the grass is making the most of it - as are the weeds, pests and diseases!

Football

  • Additional games will probably be required to catch up on postponed and cup matches. The aim will be to provide a suitable playing surface to accomodate these matches. 
  • A smooth surface that is well marked out should be aimed for, so divoting will be a main feature this month to see out the season. 
  • Increasing the mowing frequency will also help to give a neat finish. 
  • Vertidraining can be planned for straight after the last game. 

Bowling Green

  • Complete the renovation of the greens, making sure two weeks seperates the end of renovation and the first bowl being played. 
  • Open the season on as high a cut as possible. 
  • Several light rollings, with a 5 cwt roller, will help to firm the surface prior to the start of the season. 
  • Top-up ditch material are required. 

Golf Course

  • Don't be inclined to reduce the height of cut too quickly in case of a cold or wet spell.
  • Green renovation will be the main priority this month. Include the green approach in any renovation work. 
  • Consider renovating fairway 'winter greens' at the same time or soon afterwards. 
  • Winter tee renovation should take place as soon as the players are switched onto the summer tees. 
  • Vertidrain fairways. 
  • Complete topping up of the bunkers. 

Rugby League

  • Cut regularly to encourage growth and sward thickening. 
  • Apply a spring/summer fertiliser if conditions are suitable.
  • The season should be well underway with the pitches firming; ensure the surface is flat and consistent before drying out too much. 
  • Constant dragbrushing of the surface will stand the grass up and leave you with a bright finish. 
  • Aerate if possible to aid air circulation and root growth. 

Rugby Union

  • Re-commission the irrigation system, if present. 
  • Mow regularly to encourage tillering and sward thickening. 
  • Line marking should not be neglected. 

Tennis

  • Mowing frequency will be increasing, while at the same time the height of cut will be gradually lowered from the winter topping height to that required for the start of the playing season. 
  • Rolling will be routine and carried out regularly during this month to help firm up the court ready for play. 
  • If there are any thin areas present on the court, these should be oversown. 
  • Set out and mark the court. 

Racecourses

  • Mow the whole course twice per week. 
  • Aerate the course as part of routine maintenance. 
  • Apply the main spring fertiliser. 

Cricket Square

  • Continue to increase the frequency of mowing. 
  • Scarification will be increased to remove all surface debris. 
  • Rolling should be continued to provide a solid base for the playing season. 

Cricket Outfield

  • Measure out stripes for mowing, making sure to measure accurately to create the chequer board presentation. 
  • Mow outfield as growth demands. Slowly reduce the height of cut to approximately 15mm throughout this month. 
  • Monitor the outfield for weed invasion. 
  • Repair/redress any minor areas of damage, especially in and around bowlers run ups.