- Continue to check for disease activity and if identified spray with a propriety fungicide. Continue to brush as regular as possible to allow sward to remain upright and to remove excess moisture/dew, and if any earthworm activity is noticed try not to smear the casts. If possible aerate using solid tines to a depth of 125 mm.
- If climatic and ground conditions allow mow sward, by ‘topping off’.
- Continue to check for damage especially if used for winter sports. If climatic and ground conditions allow mow sward by ‘topping off’. If possible, aerate outfield to 125 mm.
- During this period of snow and cold weather, very little will be undertaken on the green. Watch out for any Fusarium/snow mould that might develop beneath the snow.
- If the weather is very cold/snow, temporary (or winter) greens should be the order of the day to help protect the main greens.
- Watch out for any Fusarium/snow mould developing beneath any snow cover.
- Now is an ideal time to carry out machinery maintenance or scrub land clearance. This year’s maintenance budget and work programme should also be completed, if they haven’t already been done, as this will also help to identify optimum times for the taking of annual leave and will help to avoid clashing holidays with peak work loads.
- Now is also a good time to attend training courses and to read up on current trade literature to see what is available or what might be launched for spring.
- No doubt games will still be played, unless the pitch is frozen and unsafe.
- Where undersoil heating is provided, games will still be played and the rootzone will no doubt provide a relatively soft surface. This will make divoting a priority after each game. The need for additional turfing in goalmouths and possibly the centre circle areas may also be required this month.
- Be careful not to dry the soil too much if using underground heating as the grass plant will dry out and may die.
Most work this month will concentrate on pitch presentation, for example:
- ensure line markings have good consistency
- drag brush the pitch to produce a striping effect
- divot as required
- fork and sand worn / bare areas.
- Continue to avoid the use of relatively heavy machinery over the winter months when ground conditions are generally unsuitable.
- Aeration can be carried out during dry periods, assuming the soil moisture content is not high.
- A light topping of the sward might be required by the end of the winter period.
- Continue to divot and repair after each meeting.
- Look ahead to planning/ordering materials ready for the April renovation work.
- Little work will typically be required except for essential removal of dew and earthworm casts and watching for signs of disease attack.
- Aeration can be considered, if ground conditions permit and if the machinery is not being serviced.