Water: The Not-So-Secret Field Ingredient

Embrace it.

As we move through summer and into the “heat” of the season — both growing season and baseball season — it’s important to remember how critical water is in the performance of maintaining sports fields. We salute all our terrific groundskeepers around the country. But I am often surprised by how many groundskeepers I’ll meet who are afraid of putting water on their fields. Water REALLY IS the “secret ingredient” in the recipe for successful sports field management.

  • It germinates your seed or stimulates your stolens
  • It quenches the thirst of your turfgrass
  • It softens your infield soil for scarification
  • It hydrates your mound & plate clay and helps repairs to properly adhere
  • It improves the resiliency of your entire sports field surface
  • It controls the dust on your infield skin and warning track
  • It washes out your dugouts
  • It cools your turfgrass in the heat
  • It activates your fertilizers
  • It is a carrier for your turf chemicals
  • It dilutes your turf paint
  • It hydrates and cools your crew
  • It cleans and relaxes you after another long hot day working on the field

Remember that water — cool, clear water — really is the groundskeeper’s best friend. It is the gift of life. Never be afraid of water. In fairly rare cases is it your enemy.

Paul Zwaska (contributor)

A former head groundskeeper for the Baltimore Orioles, Paul has been a frequent contributor to Beacon’s Ballfield Blog and other resources and products. Among other contributions to Beacon, he authored Groundskeeper University, the pioneering online ballfield maintenance training venue.