Sports Turf Management

Course CodeBHT202
Fee CodeS3
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment

Learn to Become a Greenkeeper

  • Learn about the differences between sports turfs and ornamental ones.
  • Explore a range of different grass species used in sports turf and reasons to choose them.
  • Find out about different types of turf care equipment and their use in maintaining sports turf.
  • Learn about cultivation methods and developing a maintenance program.


Lesson Structure

There are 10 lessons in this course:

  1. Turf Variety Selection
    • Introduction
    • Turf Varieties in Parks
    • Sowing
    • Feature Lawns
    • Picnic Areas
    • Sports Grounds
    • Gardens
    • Parks
    • Turf Species; bent, fescue, rye, kentucky, couch, etc
    • Turf Cultivar Selection Criteria
    • Mixing Varieties
  2. Mowing
    • Introduction
    • Types of Mowing Equipment
    • Mower Types; slasher, cylinder, flail
    • Preparation before mowing
    • How to Mow
    • Leaf Rakes and Vacuums
    • After Mowing
    • Changing Mower Blades
    • Mowing Sports Turf
    • Sports Turf Mowers
    • Problems that can Occur when Mowing
    • Edging
    • Options for Mower Power Systems; 2 stroke, 4 stroke, electric
    • Hover Mowers, Ride on Mowers
    • Choosing a Mower
  3. Cultivation Techniques
    • When to Cultivate
    • Methods of Cultivation
    • Spiking, coring, drilling, grooving, forking, raling, air blast, etc
    • Coring and hollow tining for Sports Turf
    • Scarifying (Grooving)
    • Dethatching (Vertical Mowing)
  4. Preparing for Play on Sports grounds
    • Introduction
    • Dew Removal
    • Water Removal
    • Combing
    • Vertical Mowing
    • Mowing
    • Rolling
    • Marking for Play
  5. Preparing for Play of Greens
    • Golf, Croquet, Lawn Tennis, Lawn Bowls
    • Cricket Wicket Preparation
  6. Turf Protection and Preservation
    • Managing Use
    • Minimising Damage on Turf
    • Why Repair Turf
    • How to Repair Turf
    • Reconditioning Soil
    • Reducing weed populations in turf
    • Managing turf Pests
    • Managing Demand
    • Repairing Turf
  7. Irrigation and Drainage
    • Introduction
    • Travelling Sprinkler Systems
    • Quick Coupling Valve Systems
    • Manually Operated Irrigation Systems
    • Semi automatic Irrigation Systems
    • Automatic Irrigation Systems
    • Sprinklers, Valves, Controllers
    • Management of Water Features on Golf Courses
    • Improving Surface Drainage after Construction
    • Understanding Soils and Drainage, and Soil Compaction
  8. Soil Treatment and Sprays
    • Major Nutrients and Trace Elements
    • Fertilizer Types
    • Fertilizer Application
    • Soil pH and Soil Ammendments
    • Cation Exchange Capacity
    • Pest Control; ants, beetles, caterpillars, grasshopers and crickets, leatherjackets
    • Disease Control; viruses, bacteria, fungi
  9. Evaluate Maintenance Facilities
    • Bent Grass for Bowling Greens
    • Couch Grass Greens
    • Analysis of Park Maintenance
    • Park Maintenance Tasks
  10. Develop a Management Plan
    • Common Environmental Problems; folia burn, pollution, lack of water
    • Drainage Problems in Turf
    • Frost
    • Temperature
    • Wind
    • Plants have Varying Tolerance Levels
    • Programming Works; maintenance, new works, construction crew
    • Weeds
    • Weed Control Methods
    • Developming a Management Plan for a Specific Site


  • Select turf varieties to suit different sports surface requirements; including different climates & soil types.
  • Select turf varieties to suit different sports surfaces (eg. lawn bowls, fairways, greens, league football, cricket)
  • Identify turf blends, their application and reason for use.
  • Explain alternative procedures for sports turf maintenance, used for different types of facilities.
  • Explain specific wear problems and solutions for the five types of turf facilities
  • Evaluate procedures being used to maintain different types of facilities.
  • Determine the resources required to maintain a selected sports turf.
  • Develop management plans for different types of sports turf facilities.
  • Explain the management of a turf nursery to produce a reliable supply of sod.
  • Explain the irrigation and drainage requirements for sports turf

Choose and Use the Most Appropriate Grasses
Some turf surfaces are designed, created and maintained with the intention of being used; while others are created for aesthetics.  A playing field that is used extensively will be likely to be damaged. Shoes can bruise or dislodge plant material, soil can become compacted; and when the surface is too wet or too dry, these problems tend to become exaggerated. Some grass cultivars are more tolerant of these problems, and have a greater capacity to regrow quickly after they have been damaged.
The lawn created for a home garden or at the front of a commercial property may be a very different cultivar to the elite playing field. These lawns may not be run across at all, and may even be rarely walked over. Grasses that are more sensitive to physical damage may be appropriate; if they look better.

How This Course Could Benefit You

This course is of value to people who have an interest in sports grass and playing surfaces. It will also appeal to anyone with a general interest in turf care and repair. People who take this course are most likely those working in or aspiring to work in:

  • Sports turf maintenance
  • Green keeping
  • Lawn mowing
  • Grounds maintenance
  • Landscaping
  • Horticulture
  • Parks & gardens

The course will also be of value to people wishing to include a sports turf maintenance service as part of an existing mowing, turf care or landscaping business.





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