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Title: Maximising the performance of sports turf.
Author: Canaway, Patrick Michael.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3518 6368
Awarding Body: University of Liverpool
Current Institution: University of Liverpool
Date of Award: 1994
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Research was carried out on four main subject areas: playing quality of natural turf; establishment; nitrogen nutrition and stabilisation ofsand rootzones. Apparatus and test methods for determining playing quality are described and procedures for the development of standards for playing quality measures are given. A theoretical analysis of the factors governing playing quality was undertaken which showed that natural turf must be considered in terms of the plant and soil constituents and the manner in which these interact, especially in response to wear. The soil factor grouping is shown to be the most important influence on playing quality, primarily through its effect on moisture retention and throughput. A large-scale field experiment was carried out in order to investigate the effect of five different constructional techniques on playing quality and other aspects of turf performance. Constructional types included: pipe-drainage, slitdrainage, slit-drainage with a 25mm sand layer, a sand carpet and a sand profile construction. The results showed that the sand-based constructions provided the best playing quality but that potential numbers of days lost due to the presence of standing water decreased with increasing constructional sophistication. A review of playing quality of fine turf was carried out and an experiment on ball roll characteristics of five turfgrass specieswas undertaken which showed significant differencesamong species. Two experiments on the establishment of turf using different types of seed and sod were carried out, whose objective was to determine the effects of these experimental treatments on the playing quality, ground cover and water infiltration rate of playing surfaces for both football and golf. Experimental treatments included grades of mature turf, juvenile turf and seed. The most notable finding was the dramatic reduction in water infiltration rate where mature turfwas used for establishment. This was ascribed to a combination of organic and mineral matter imported along with the turf causing blockage of soil macropores and hence reducing water infiltration rate. The effect offertiliser nitrogen on the response of Lolium perenne turf grown on a PruntyMulqueen sand carpet rootzone was studied a field experiment which was subjected to football-type artificial wear treatments during two playing seasons. Measures included ground cover under wear and playing quality. In the case of ground cover and player traction responses to nitrogen showed distinct optima particularly during wear. Ball rebound resilienceand hardness showed no such response. Finally an experiment on the stabilisation ofsand rootzones for sport was carried out the objective of which was to study the effect of artificially strengthening a sand rootzone using randomly oriented tensile inclusions {Netlon mesh elements}. Three different rates of mesh elements, two different sizes and establishment using two types of turf were studied in a field experiment. Mesh element inclusion was found to increase water infiltration rate, traction and hardness. Turf treated by washing to remove adhering soil prior to laying also gave higher infiltration rates and, in addition, affected playing quality.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Recreational surfaces; Turfgrass