MM – a grass seed that rocks!

Lucy Nichollsin Turf & Grass Seed

From the very first day that legendary guitarist KK Downing decided to establish a golf course, Astbury Hall Golf Club in Shropshire has only ever used MM grass seed.

Course Manager Sean Jarvis has long relied on the market leading MM grass seed, ever since working at Bournemouth's Iford Golf Club and then to the Open Golf Centre in Leicester where he managed the establishment of a new 9-hole golf course. In 2004, Sean again turned to MM seed when he took on the role of Course Manager at Astbury Hall and oversaw the complete construction of the championship course.

"I've been using MM seed for 22 years and counting. It is still as good now as it was when I first started using it all those years ago," he said.

Astbury Hall Estate was formerly owned by KK Downing, the lead guitarist for heavy metal band Judas Priest, who purchased the estate, just outside Bridgnorth in Shropshire in 1985. A keen golfer, KK bought the estate to establish a top-quality elite golf course. His design was largely influenced by his experiences of playing golf around the world.

For the construction of the Astbury course Sean used MM22 for all fairways, tees and roughs with the greens being sown with a mix of Creeping Bent, Browntop Bent and Fescue.

KK may not own the stately home anymore, but the course continues to go from strength to strength under the watchful eye of Sean - who persists to use products from the MM range.

"We now use MM50 100% Ryegrass for tees and fairways as we need more wear tolerance," he said. "This is because the tees are quite small compared with the amount of golf we have, plus the Ryegrass varieties in the mix are very fine leaved so it gives a nice fine sward.

"The greens are oversown with MM9 - a 100% Browntop Bent plus Cobra Nova Creeping Bent. We tend to overseed the greens towards the end of the summer while there is still a reasonable soil temperature to get a good germination rate.

"Given that it can be quite cool here in Bridgnorth in the early spring, oversowing the greens in late summer gives me a window of opportunity when carrying out general greens renovation. Plus cutting heights are not at the lowest during this time which gives the seedling grass a better chance of surviving. Fairways and tees are divoted over the course of the summer as part of the general course maintenance."

MM is one of the most respected brands in the UK sportsturf and amenity industries. With a proven track record of producing the best possible swards, the MM range of grass seed offers an unrivalled performance and appearance. There is a reason why Sean has been using the mixtures for so long - as he explains.

"The different MM mixtures and varieties have always worked for me at the three different courses I have managed," he said. "All three had different challenges with the climate and growing conditions from the dry south coast through to the wet Shropshire countryside.

Germination speed, establishment and seed quality are just three strengths of the products I have come to rely on. Furthermore, the seaweed based Headstart Gold seed treatment helps with seedling establishment.

"I have experimented with other blends in the past but never found them to deliver in the way that MM mixtures do."

Aside from the performance of MM mixtures, Sean was quick to praise the support he receives from Matt Gresty, MM & Designer Sales and Brand Manager for DLF UK.

"I have known Matt since the year 2000 when he got involved with the project at Iford Park and I started using the MM mixtures. Since then, I have used Matt's advice and seed knowledge on the courses I have managed. A strong relationship with my suppliers who can give good technical advice that I can trust, has always been important to me."

For further information, please contact MM Sports Seed on 01386 791102 or visit the company's website

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GolfTurf & grass seed