Cricket is traditionally played as a summer sport, the season commencing from the end of April to September.
The closed season allows for an end of season renovation, hopefully while the good germination weather is still with us and continues through the dormant winter period. If work hasn't been completed fully before the cold weather sets in, in the autumn, then don't panic, the spring usually allows enough time to make any repairs and get any new grasses established in time for the start of the season.
See our Useful Information section for the minimum boundary lengths of the outfield and the wicket markings.
Our monthly diary is not 'set in stone' and is purely designed as a guideline. There are variables involved that will ensure that no working template can be created, the weather, the site location, aspect, soil characteristics, finance available will help to determine your own working diary.
If you would like to offer some advice and pass on your knowledge to the cricket diary, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with your experiences.
This month, looks like remaining cold with severe frosts forecast. It goes without saying, stay off the square while frosty, but with less rain, the squares may start to dry a little. The opportunity to roll, may be uppermost in your mind, but there is plenty of time to worry about hardening up the ground later.
In the meantime, continue brushing the square to remove dew and disperse worm casts as often as possible. Subject to weather and soil conditions, you may be able to carry out some scarification on the square. Many squares have suffered with moss this year, and if you are treating the moss, with an appropriate chemical, then it will need to be removed once it has turned.
Light mechanical scarification will be of benefit if the square is dry, but local affected areas may be raked out carefully with a springbok rake.
It is not too late to do a little over-seeding on the ends, if the take hasn't been that good from the autumn renovation. The ground is moist enough to aid germination, but if possible use some germination sheets or Hessian sacking, to protect the seed from the frosts. If you have sheets, remember to check daily for disease and avoid leaving the covers on for more than 5-6 days at this time of the year. In addition to any seeding it may be worth considering a light application of a turf tonic to pick the grass up. A turf tonic will help to strengthen the plant and give it a much needed boost as we move towards the spring.
If you were lucky enough to manage one or two cuts on the square in January, you may well not see much in the way of growth this month due to the cooler weather, but if the soil conditions allow, mow the square, maintaining the height at about 25mm. Always brush the square prior to mowing.