Newcastle's Royal Grammar School rugby pitch is ready for the demands of the new school year, having been successfully overseeded with Barenbrug's BAR 10 RTF and BAR 7 grass seed mixtures.
The school's head groundsman, David Payne, has been using BAR 10 with Rhizomatous Tall Fescue (RTF) on the pitch for some three years. This unique cultivar is renowned for its remarkable deep rooting capabilities, together with its prolific rhizome (underground stem) production, which provides the outstanding tensile strength and recovery required for such a heavy-wear playing surface.
But, faced with a short summer renovation window after the poor winter, David and his grounds team turned to BAR 7 - a sports turf favourite - for the first time this spring. Supplied by Turfcare Specialists Limited, this fast-establishing perennial ryegrass mixture is providing the additional grass cover required, plus further improves wear tolerance and shoot recovery.
"We started using RTF because the pitch takes such a hammering," David explains. "From September to February it's in constant use whether it's for first-team training on the weekends or general play every lunch-break - we've found it's the only thing that keeps the cover and gives the stability and strength to withstand the wear.
"The RTF is really well integrated into the turf now, but we decided to use the BAR 7 this year as the long, cold winter left us with such a short renovation window as well as a few bare patches, so we needed quick establishment. The pitch is now looking excellent and playing really well. I've had nothing but positive feedback from the director of sport, head of rugby, bursar and facilities manager. There's not a bare patch in sight and, thanks to the RTF, it doesn't 'kick-out', so we hardly have to divot.
"I'm very happy indeed - it just goes to show that an investment in good quality seed really pays off."
For further information on Barenbrug's BAR 10 RTF and BAR 7 mixtures - or to find out more about the specialist grass seed breeder's products and services - call 01359 272000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, visit www.barenbrug.co.uk.