Southampton return to winning formula
By David Butler
Southampton FC Groundsman Dave Roberts has returned to IGER-bred ryegrasses following the development of AberImp.
"I used AberElf when the club played at The Dell and we had some excellent results, so when the new St Mary's pitch was being constructed we seeded with AberElf and Claudius, mixed with Poa supina and Poa pratensis. The combination worked very well during the first season's play and we had good grass coverage across the pitch," Dave reports.
But last spring during the pitch renovation Dave decided to change the seed mixture. Unfortunately, the results were disappointing although the pitch did take an increased training load and some very wet periods over the winter. As a result, Dave is turning back to IGER-bred varieties.
"With the development of the dwarf perennial ryegrass AberImp, I have decided to go back to a straight mix of AberElf and AberImp bought through Pitchcare.com. About eleven of the 40 bags purchased have been sown so far and the rest will be held back for the end of season renovation," Dave says.The seed was pre-germinated first and Dave says that a new green haze is starting to appear across the pitch. "The recent sunny weather has been great, but with it comes the cool nights, so we have used germination sheets through the centre of the pitch to encourage early growth," he explains.