Autumn Renovation Pecking Order
Update from Paul Tatton (Chairman of the Lancashire Groundsman's Association) about autumn renovation for the square.
Shave and define square to approximately 4mm, scarify in 3 directions ie 10 to 10 past the hour (not 45 degrees) and final pass stump to stump.
Clean up by mower or power blower, punch solid tine to 80 to 100mm, sarrel roll (seed bed), seed, pregermination fertilise, dress with loam, drag mat midwicket to cover.
All processed conditions need to be dry except punch spike and sarrel roll.
No job is better than a poor job if conditions are not suitable. Hold your nerve and be patient and wait for that opportunity. Winter and next spring "mother nature" will run its course.
Autumn / winter fertilise say 3.6.8. + 4% Fe. When square has germinated punch spike once a month until late January / early February when conditions allow ie no frost and not too wet.
Every cricket groundsman I have spoken to is suffering from Jonathan Trott syndrome ie 2-3 inches deep trough through the popping crease, which is unecessary and causing expense and time in the form of loam and seed. In my time I found a little "smile" with the toe of the bat was more than adequate. I've put wicket keepers in the same bracket with stumps not going anywhere, yet we have marks scribed at the back of stumps. Any ideas for a solution phone me on 0161 702 8615. Maybe 5 penalty runs to the bowling side for defacing the playing surface? Imagine a fast bowler bowling the perfect middle stump yorker only to see the ball land in the trough and shoot off for 4 byes. I rest my case.
Do not leave machine servicing to March 2014, deals are to be had through the winter.
Paul Tatton (Chairman Lancashire Groundsman's Association)