As a county veteran team player, Welsh Bowling Association Advanced Coach and Level 1 IOG qualified Greenkeeper, Montgomery Bowling Club member, Mike Beloe is a man who knows the game, how to care for a bowls green and also achieve the best possible playing surface. The club has existed since 1783, making it one of the oldest in the country.
Mike, who has been a member for three years, has, with expert advice from a local qualified agronomist and supplier, helped to maintain the clubs green for the last three years. In June 2012 he generously purchased and donated to the club, a 24"cut-width Dennis FT 610 mower with ten-bladed cylinder and Tungsten Tipped Verti-Cutter cassettes.
Commenting on his work at the club Mike said, "Measuring just 35m x 30m, our green is a non- standard size. This does mean that we are unable to rotate direction of play, which, over the season, results in excessive wear and tear in certain areas. This problem, compounded by a lack of light, caused by a high wall along one side of the green and also surrounding trees, means we need a dedicated summer and winter maintenance programme and the best equipment for the job.
I had used a Dennis with the interchangeable Tungsten Tipped Verti-Cutter cassette at a previous Club and, based on that positive experience, knew it was the ideal combination we needed at Montgomery. We use it on the green every fortnight through the season, with no disruption to the playing surface or loss of play for the members. Using the FT610 in this way has definitely speeded up the green and also improved thatch removal. We maintain a cut height of between 5mm and 6mm during the playing season and our new winter regime is to cut to 7mm. This has had no adverse effect on the surface and has also reduced incidence of Fusarium Patch disease.
The FT610, together with the Verti-cutting cassette, is the ideal greens machinery for our particular needs. The new Honda GX160 engine with Q9 low noise and vibration technology, simple click height adjustment and excellent manoeuvrability on our small green; make it a joy to use."
Image: (left to right:) Mike Beloe - Greenkeeper, Geoff Threfall - Chairman, Jim Clarke - Dealer and Mike Evans - Greenkeper at Montgomery Bowls Club.