Deeside Veterans Bowling League

Affiliated to: WCGBA & FABA

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During this period of snow and cold weather, very little will be undertaken on the green. Watch out for any Fusarium or snow mould that might develop beneath the snow.


Finish off outstanding turf repairs. Use turf that closely matches the indigenous sward. Consider an application of turf hardener, at say 25-35g/m2, to help reduce the chance of disease attack. Drag brush and/or switch daily. Continue with slit tining of the green whenever the ground and climatic conditions are suitable.

Ensure the surrounds are clean and tidy and that any outstanding work id being completed.


Aerate whenever possible – usually slit tines, although some greenkeepers will be moving over to solid tines.

The green might benefit from a light rolling to smooth the surface following the ravages of winter. Take a soil sample and check that the correct amount of moisture is available before starting.

Some greens may be ready for a light topdressing at the end of the month, although be careful not to smother the grass.

Commission the irrigation system before a dry spell appears.

Sweep and clean out ditches.


Complete the renovation of the greens, making sure two weeks separates the end of renovation and the first bowl being played. This should ensure enough time for topdressing to be worked into the sward. This is important as the grass is usually not too active.

Open the season on as high a cut as possible. This will give the grass some insurance against cold weather returning.

Ensure the irrigation system is fully commissioned.


Be careful not to set the mower too low as the grass is only getting going at present.

Cold snaps or May dry spells can still occur, retarding growth, so it is sensible to keep the height of cut to 6mm or higher.

Areas of the green which have been renovated in March should not be treated to any form of heavy scarification as this will only tear out young, newly establishing grasses.

Watch out for signs of Fusarium patch that wet, dewy mornings bring in prevalence. Ensure the greens are adequately brushed or switched early in the mornings.


Verticut and groom regularly to help control meadow grass seed head production and to produce a more upright growing seed sward. This in turn will also help to provide a slightly faster surface.

Maintain growth at 5mm, mowing 4 or 5 times a week.

Localised dry patch may start to appear, but this should not be confused with a poorly developed root system which will also create rapid browning and drying.

Continue aerating.


To help manage irrigation, make a soil moisture deficit chart, combined with observations of the sward and dryness of the soil.

Mow regularly and be prepared to raise the height of cut to 6mm, especially in dry weather.

Be careful when scarifying and verticutting at this time of year – avoid stressing the plant.


Irrigation is key for good playing surfaces, but don’t apply too much or the surface will still be wet for the morning start of play.

Mow at 5mm, with a double cut for match days. When conditions allow, aerate and irrigate first.

Apply fertiliser this month. Usually this will be a 8:0:0 (inorganic nitrogen)m product applied at 34g/m. P and K will depend on soil analysis and sward assessment results. Consider an evening application with a good watering in; then it has all night to wash into the surface – don’t forget to aerate first.


Hollow-tining a green can be carried out in a day using a suitable machine.

Once the hollow-tining and clearing up has been completed, the green should be cut to provide a good playing surface. This hollow-tining operation can be carried out a second time, at the end of the season, if needed.


The end of season renovation will be completed this month. Greens that are renovated late may benefit from the turfing of thin areas.

Watch out for fusarium, especially if top dressing has been applied.

De-commission the irrigation system.

Carry out repairs to the surrounds when work on the green is complete.


Regular out-of-season work will be undertaken from now on for the autumn/winter period. Drag brush daily, or a ground/climatic conditions allow to maintain a dry surface with upright grasses. The height of cut will typically be 10-12mm.

Earthworm activity, as well as any sign of leatherjacket presence, will need to be treated.

Mild, humid autumnal weather will be ideal conditions for a fusarium attack – so keep a close eye on the situation.

Aeration, probably with slit/chisel tines, should not be neglected.

Remove leaves from the green on a regular basis.


Earthworms may be a problem, so regular dragbrushing – ideally daily when conditions are such that large amounts of earthworm casts are produced. Also, aeration to keep the surface open to improve surface drainage and drying, may help.

Regular applications of sulphate of iron, every 3 to 4 weeks, can help to minimise the effects of surface casting earthworm.

Watch out for fusarium patch disease during mild damp spells. Sulphate of iron applications can help to harden the grass against this disease, or have a suitable stock of contact fungicide available to spray at the first signs.

Keep the grass topped at about 10-12mm: this will also help to reduce the chance of disease attack which may be more prevalent with longer grass as it will retain a more humid and damp atmosphere among its leaves.

Prepare maintenance schedule for the next year, along with budget requirements.