May was quite a mixed month weather wise rain ,heat wave and more rain quite the challenge but always seems the way as a groundsman .
pitch preparation is now around 14 days and we use the pitch for up to 3 weekends ,between times we shade the wickets from the sun or let them get wet to keep a bit of life in them.
life after use
once used we brush up the ends by hand and then get the brush machine on it to clear up the debris from the rest of the wicket meaning hopefully we aren’t building up a thatch layer.
once brushed up we water and then create seed holes(pic above )this can be done using a dimple seeder or a sarrol roller ,whatever it takes to create holes for the seed to sit in will work ,if you can’t do the whole pitch or feel it isn’t needed then just do the ends and seed as required,will save a lot of work at the end of season .
we use a coated seed that is coated in fertiliser we find we get great results in season using it but use a uncoated one for renovations.once we have created a key for the seed with the sarrol roller/seeder we then top up the low areas with Loam and seed,much the same as you do with footholes but without the thumper ,we often use our light weight triple or tractor wheels to firm.then we topdress any other lows using a loot or straight edge whatever you have will work even a length of board just to relevel the ends.
once levelled then there’s the option of pre seed fertiliser application or just add some black debris netting (germination sheet)during games we put a coconut mat over it to ensure no one ends up with muddy boot and we don’t end up with un level ends,regular watering and the seeds up in no time 🌱👍.
regular spiking and application of gypsum
work has continued on a wet area we have where the sheets shed there water off the back of the square we are trying liquid gypsum with regular spiking operation and verticutting /scarification when we see a window and ensure we roll from the opposite end overal aim is to make this area more free draining removing surface thatch,decompaction,and use of tonics such as gypsum and a penetrant will all help and also looking into ends of season renovations when l hope to scarify and topdressing with course sports sand if l can’t get approval for additional drainage .
Nomads is surrounded by hedges on most sides so a lot of hedge cutting is carried out especially during Spring and early Summer and on a weekly basis on the formal hedges that surround our North ground.
As you can see by the above photo the mini clinic at Ansty cricket went very well was well attended the the training delivered by Andy Mackay was second to none lots of onsite from Andy re seed prefernaces ,tips including glueing footholes and some great sausage rolls to finish off a great evening and keep a eye out for a mini workshop in August that will help us prepare for end of season renovations.
keep up the amazing work to all the unsung heroes of Sussex cricket.l am sure pitches around the county are improving and now we as a Assocation of like minded interviduals this can only continue great work 👏🏻