Before & After - ideas?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Chris Wagner, May 23, 2003.

  1. Chris Wagner

    Chris Wagner LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 252









    This is the sports field on our campus. Used almost all day. Gym classes during the school day 8a-3p (recess as well). Aftercare program until 4p. Soccer two nights a week.

    There is no irrigation and the field is in full sun. I got a lot to come up between last fall and this spring, but there are still a bunch of bare spots that aren't too pleasing.

    School is out the first week of June. Any ideas to make it thicker and advice on whether to overseed or just tend to each area that needs improvement?


  2. Got a hose and sprinkler?
  3. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    what I would do is aerate it, and then put a topdressing layer on top of it. That should overtime help to fill in some on those areas, and also make the field a very safe place to play. Try if you can to convence them to water it.

    I did notice that they put a sidewalk in across the street:p
  4. Chris Wagner

    Chris Wagner LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 252

    Definitely have hoses & sprinklers. :D

    My only fear is that June might push it a little late for seeding with much success. I have to keep that area available to the students during the school day. Might be the only resort... fall isn't much better since students are back in school.

    I did aerate in April and overseeded, but not topdress. Planted "athletic field" grass from Lesco. It was a mix of Rye & Bluegrass.

    The soil is probably compacted again to where aerating again will still be effective don't you think? Will June be pushing it too late? (Chicago area)

    The other problem is that the boss doesn't really care that it looks bad. He knows the amount of traffic it receives. I'm trying to convince him it doesn't need to look like it does.

    PS We have no irrigation on our whole campus except for hoses and sprinklers... pushing for that this year too!
  5. DLCS

    DLCS LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,380


    Most sports fields in my area are irrigated during the summer. You need a sprinkler that follows the hose type.
  6. A rain train.....

    Nelson makes a sports feild one, $1100

    Forget that lesco seed, you need to use Fescue.

    Rye can't handel stress or activity. Bluegrass can't handel heat.

    If the areas need top dressing hit em, otherwise change to fescue.

    I am doing a few sports feilds and we flooded them with fescues.
  7. Chris Wagner

    Chris Wagner LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 252

    Tall fescue I'm guessing? Any variety you like over another?
  8. crazygator

    crazygator LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,048


    If your using Lesco already, get some Tri-Gold Turf Type Tall Fescue. I have had awesome results this year. Aerate first, seed, fertilize to get it growing, top dress, then water like crazy.

    Being in Chicago I bet your still ok with seeding, only if you get it down soon.
  9. Mickhippy

    Mickhippy LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,251

    I'm asking you lot as well but, wouldnt aerating more often help. I mean, its a very used sports field so it would get compacted very quickly.
    I wouldnt have a clue about your weather conditions or grass types etc but look at the use its getting.
  10. Chris Wagner

    Chris Wagner LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 252

    Yeah, during the growing season, it would help to aerate at least once in both the spring and the fall. Right now, it's just getting a spring aeration.

    The other problem is that the pastor can't fit in an aerator for either of our tractors in the budget. When we aerate, we're renting a couple of commercial Ryan's. With two guys it isn't bad, but it's too much work for one guy to walk back and forth on that whole field.

    The field definitely gets a lot of use. Of course I fight with budget issues all the time as well.

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