I've had a lot of requests to supply a general set of recommendations for winter maintenance for bowling greens. Although the full program for any green should be based on a thorough inspection and soil analysis, there are some general rules you can follow. I've also put together a suggested package of materials to help you apply this program more easily.
I spoke to someone a while back who said he liked the site but thought it would be better if I included some “Greenkeeping Tips”! hmmm.
Anyway, always happy to help here is my suggestion on finding said tips on the site:
There is a search box at the top right of every page. If you type in any greenkeeping issue such as thatch, compaction, mowing etc, the search will return a list of related articles that you can click on to read.
There is also a growing library of fact sheets and reports on a range of greenkeeping subjects.
Change Tack is an old Sailors phrase that has passed into everyday conversation to describe a change of approach.
Sometimes when we are working on a project, its easy to feel we aren’t making progress and that a “change of tack” might help.
However, the literal meaning of the phrase as used by sailors describes the actions required to effect a change of direction.
So when the latest greenkeeping fad doesn’t seem to be working as described, its quite common for bowls clubs to change tack.
Unfortunately, whereas the sailors change of tack usually helps to take him to a predetermined destination, in bowling clubs it very often means simply jumping on to the next fad and then waiting to see where they end up!
In Performance Bowls Greens I started off by explaining how this will always be the case for many clubs as the industry must keep re-inventing the wheel to keep up sales and it is actually in the trade’s best interest for your bowls green to be sub-standard so that you feel the urge to keep trying new things to correct it!
The biggest of these fads in recent times is routine top dressing. This has now stuck fast for more than 3 decades and as a result has become a “tradition” and traditions as we know are pretty hard to unhook from.
There are of course many other fads that abound in the shape of products, advice and operations we can carry out on our greens, but top-dressing has been the most damaging.
This is because it has the capacity over a number of years to alter the soil composition and with it the natural ecosystem of the soil in our greens. A few years of this is bad enough, but the decades of it we have now had, has been very detrimental to the condition of bowls greens.
The knock on effect of this is adequately described here.
The ultimate guide to breaking away from this and staying on a path to success is Performance Bowls Greens which is available here. If you are quick you can use this coupon code to get it for half price: “green50”
Just use the coupon code at the checkout to get our best selling eBook for half price.
Photo: A bloke called Jerm
When traditions get hold they are somethimes hard to shift and this is no more true than in bowls green maintenance.
Over the past 3 or 4 decades bowls green maintenance has been transformed into a weird science that is designed to baffle greenkeepers into rejecting common sense and observation in favour of bottles and bags of ever more expensive fertilisers, pesticides and conditioners.
Bowls green keeping is essentially very simple and all of our actions and maintenance procedures can either add or detract from the performance of our bowls greens.
A detailed explanation of what has gone wrong is included here and a step by step process
for turning this situation around is included here.