GRASS CUTTING FAQ’S

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1. Why do I need to cut the grass as much as possible in the growing season?
We need to do this for a number of reasons:
1. To help keep grass length at a constant height and not allow the leaf to get too long, as letting the leaf get too long and then cutting it short again stresses it out.
2. Cutting on a regular basis helps thicken the leaf and produces more tilling of the leaf.
3.The frequence of cutting will also depend on what fertilizer programme you have.

2. What’s the difference between using a rotary to using a mower?
A rotary mower has two sharpened knives spinning at great speed and cuts the grass by smashing into it essentially chopping the grass.
A Cylinder mower usually has 4-10 blades depending on which surface is being cut.
They rotate and then trap the grass between the bottom plate and cylinder slicing it. Its very important that the bottom blade is kept very sharp.

3. Is it Important to remove the grass clippings from the playing surface?
This helps reduce thatch build up and keeps the surface clean. It can also help reduce worm casting on the surface.

4. Is it important for my blades to be sharp and cutting properly?
Yes very important. If the grass leaf is not cut properly then it can open up the plant to disease.

5. Does the speed at which I cut make any difference?
If the cutter is moving too fast it will not allow the blades to cut the grass properly and could rip out the plant or just not cut it.

6. Is it important to wash my machine down after every use?
If you don’t wash it down after every use you will get grass build up on the blades which could affect the cutting. Its also bad for the machinery.

7. What’s verti-cutting and how will it help my surface?
It helps reduce thatch build up in the sward. It also keeps the leaf healthy allowing it air movement and a stronger sward.

8. Why is it important top brush and remove the loose grass off my surface?
Helps remove dew off the leaf reducing risk of disease. It also allows the leaf to stand up, allowing air movement and sunlight and is part of a grass cutting maintenance program.

9. Is it important to do a renovation to my playing surface at the end of each season?
Yes, this helps repair the surface for the following season. This can include – aeration, topdressing, seeding, fertilizing, scarifying and many other operations.

10. Does it make a difference to what seed I use?
Yes, different playing surfaces require different seeds.

11. What’s the best way for me to apply my seed?
To dimple or drill seed.

12. How do I know how much I need?
Different seeds are applied at different rates. You will also need to know what size of area and what sport is to be played.

13. What’s the difference between dimpling and drilling seeds?
Drill seeding is where a disc or blade cuts into the ground and drops the seed into the grove cut open.
Dimple – is where a hole is made in the soil and the seed drops into the hole made.

14. At what depth does my seed need to be sown to?
Different seeds get sown at different depths.

15. Can I put too much seed on my surface and what would happen?
To much seed will cause damping off. This is caused by too much seed growing in one place and not enough space for the seed to grow. This in turn can cause disease.

16. Why is it important to put fertilizer down?
The plant is a living thing and requires food, water, air and light. But if one of the above is applied too much or too little this could affect the plants health and growth.

17. What kind of feed do I use?
It is best to get a soil sample taken from your sports pitch and send it to a lab and ask for a feed programme to suit your sports pitch.

18. How often do I need to feed my surface?
Its best to get a soil sample done and go from there.

19. Are there different types of fertilizer?
Yes, for all types of surfaces.

20. What does verti-draining do?
It helps decompact the surface and soil structure. This allows water to penetrate through the structure and also helps with air movement and root development.

21. What size tines should I use?
This depends on the sports surface.

22. What depths should I go to?
It’s best to go as deep as possible, but sometimes the ground will only allow you to go to a certain depth.

23. How fast do I go?
The verti-drainer runs at 500RPM (max) and forward speed depends on space pattern.

24. Are there different patterns?
Yes – different size tines will dictate space, pattern and ground conditions.

25. How often should I verti-drain?
Its good to aerate as much as possible to different size tines and depths. It can only be done however when conditions are right.

26. What does coring do to my surface?
Coring removes a plug of soil from the ground and can help with soil exchange, aeration and removal of thatch.

27. What’s the difference between coring and verti-draining?
Coring removes a plug of soil from the ground whereas verti-draining punches a hole into the ground.

28. Do you have different size tines and patterns?
Yes, Different size tines and patterns for different sport surfaces.

29. Can you core through the playing season?
I would not advise this as this operation could destabilize the playing surface too much.

30. What depth do I need to core at?
Core samples should be taken beforehand to determine depth.

31. What happens to the cores on the surface?
They can be collected or recycled back into the surface, it all depends on what you are trying to achieve.

32. Do I need to put top dressing down after the playing season has finished?
It is best to as this helps with reinstating levels, drainage and seed germination

33. Can I use any type of soil and sand?
It is best to use a sports dressing.

34. What will happen if I use the wrong one?
If you don’t use a sports dressing you run the risk of contamination or worse, water may not be able to penetrate through the new dressing causing water logging.

35. How much should I use?
This depends on the sports surface and budget, but it is best to have less of the right spec than more of the wrong spec.

36. Why cant I use building sand? And what’s the difference between that and sports sand?
With building sand you don’t know the spec and there a chance of lime being in there. It may also not allow water to penetrate through it. If your going to use sand use sports washed sand other wise if you don’t you could cause all sorts of problems on your sports surface.

For more information on any of the above and a quote for professional grass maintenance services, please contact us.

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