Cricket Ground Maintenance Tips
To support groundsmen, the following cricket grounds maintenance calendar has been supplied courtesy of Pitchcare.
This calendar should be used as a guide only.
With a mild winter being experienced by many so far, and below average rain fall in some parts, January's weather can be fairly unpredictable, with snow, rain and freezing temperatures that are not always conducive to your planned winter maintenance regimes. Many grounds may well be saturated, preventing you from doing any work to the square or the outfield.
February sees the beginning of a number of activities such as, brushing, verti-cutting, mowing, light rolling and fertilising to prepare the sward/grass surfaces for the forth-coming playing season.
After a harsh winter of snow and frosts, the key to these activities is timing as each operation is weather dependent.
As we move out of winter, and with spring just around the corner, we are hoping the worst of the winter weather is behind us. With the increased daylight hours, milder weather and warmer temperatures, this should stimulate some much needed grass growth.
After a winter of snow, rain and freezing temperatures it is surprising how quickly the weather can change and influence ground conditions. With spring on its way and summer just around the corner, soil temperatures will soon begin to rise, stimulating some much needed growth.
April has provided us with one of the driest months on record for 50 years, in some parts of the UK, promoting ideal conditions for pre season rolling, pitch preparations and out field maintenance. Ironically though, this unusually dry spell of weather does have cause for concerns.
We should now be well into the cricket season, with ground staff working hard to produce quality playing surfaces for their clubs. The recent hot sunny weather and drying winds may certainly have had an affect on the square, rapidly drying out the playing surfaces and, in some cases, cause some severe cracking of the soil profiles.
Flaming JUNE - flaming heck more like. Whilst June turned out to be a month of sunshine, showers and prolonged rain around the country, in some parts anyway!
July was certainly a testing month for many groundsmen with the weather dictating the extent of works required. Many parts of the country were experiencing extreme weather fronts, with some areas experiencing drought conditions whilst others were having heavy thundery showers.
September can be the busiest time for some groundsmen. Those who have a few weeks left of their season will be busy planning end of season activities, whilst others will be turning their attentions to more important issues such as end of season renovations.
As the curtain falls on yet another season, the weather for the start of October sees record temperatures around the country, reaching as high as 29.4 degrees in the south.
As summer time ends and winter begins, renovation programmes on cricket squares should by now have been completed. With the north of England and Scotland suffering from high winds and low pressure systems, the Midlands and Southern parts are basking in warm day time temperatures, which, continuing into October has certainly helped in getting germination on the square.
Hopefully, by now, you should have managed to complete your end of season renovations and germination has been successful and any loam dressings will by now have settled down. It is important to go into the winter months with a good sward cover.