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Create Your Own Wembley Surface

8th October 2012
Whether you want to replicate the hallowed turf for a kick about with the family or just for a stunning spectacle, it is easier than you may think to create your own Wembley right in your back yard. 
Achieve Perfect Lines
It’s the shot that the TV editors love on cup final day: high above the ground from the Goodyear blimp images capture the crisp neatness of the surface perfectly. The lines meticulously mowed into the grass by the groundskeeper create a flawless effect somewhere between a chess board and a snooker table. With a little practice you can also achieve these perfect lines. It is all in the technique with which you use to mow the surface. No fancy specialist grass or dyes are required. Using a reel mower rather than a rotary mower, the grass is pulled into a very sharp blade edge. By mowing each line in alternating directions, the blades bend in opposing directions. The blades of grass bent away from you will appear lighter as the light will reflect off the broader side whereas the blades bent towards you will only reflect light from a smaller surface area (the tip of the blade) and so will appear darker.  
After you master the line pattern, you may be tempted to attempt more ambitious designs such as the checkerboard effect or the diagonal checkerboard effect. If you want to intensify the lines of your design, use a roller to further press the grass in the desired direction.
Feed the Grass
Like every living thing, grass needs nutrition and a healthy diet to look its best. Bring out the brilliant greenness of your surface with care an attention. Living in Lancashire we don’t have to worry too much about our grass getting enough moisture due to helpful year round rainfall, but those of you in drier climates may need to top up the tank. However there are more don’ts that do’s in regards to watering grass and ground maintenance. Watering after the sun goes down or just before results in the water just sitting atop the grass, limiting nutrition and increasing the chance of fungus and disease. You are watering the roots so allow the water to soak into the soil over a full day.
Supplemental grass food is also beneficial when caring for the wellbeing of your lawn. The most notable benefit being that it helps eradicate weeds that are both unsightly and a threat to your grass.
Use Quality Machinery
A poor workman blames his tools, but you will struggle to create your perfect surface with twenty year manual mower and a flowery watering can. Trusted manufacturers such as Gianni Ferrari and John Deere mowers are used by the professionals and can help you replicate that professional look for your turf. These machines are designed to make the big, daunting jobs seem small and manageable. 
High quality machinery is especially beneficial if you have an uneven or unusually shaped garden due to their ability to tackle hills and bumps with ease.
Whilst most of us will never achieve the dream of turning out at Wembley or Lord’s, we can at least replicate the euphoric feel of the grass beneath our feet. 
2010 Stuart Taylor International
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