The Expert’s Guide To Caring For Your Lawn Tennis Court
Summer is coming in hot, which means it’s time to swap your favourite cologne for the smell of suncream, stock up on some fresh fruit and Pimms, and dust off your tennis racquet because a summer without a spot of tennis just isn’t really summer. The question is: how do you turn your lawn into the Centre Court at Wimbledon.
The answer: hire Joe’s Lawn Care because we’re nothing short of experts in grass tennis courts.
Of course, you’re probably wondering how we manage to turn lawns into sublime tennis courts. So without further ado, here is our no-nonsense guide to caring for your grass tennis court this spring and summer:
What Makes A Grass Tennis Court Different?
Before we jump into the nitty-gritty bits of looking after your lawn tennis court, it’s super-important to understand that the big difference between a tennis court and a domestic lawn is the way it makes a ball bounce. In short, the aim of the game is to create as much compaction as possible by utilising very, very short manicured grass, which is almost the exact opposite of what we try to achieve with a normal back garden lawn.
8 Tips To Caring For Your Grass Tennis Court
Once you’ve planned out where your grass court is going to be, painted on the white stripes, installed a net and popped a few garden chairs on either side for your excited spectators to sip on their Pimms as they watch you imitate Federer vs. Nadal, it’s time to care for your court — and here are our top tips to help you:
Expert Mowing: The most important part when trying to maintain the perfect grass court is mowing it correctly. To do this, make sure you mow it every two to three days on the lowest setting possible, somewhere between 6-10mm, preferably with a roller attached to the back. That’s the fundamentals part to creating a smooth surface and enjoying a good bounce.
Regular Fertilising: If mowing is the most important aspect to a good game, keeping your grass strong and healthy is next on the list. To do this you need to keep your tennis court looking lean and green instead of brown dead. Cue regular fertilising, which will not only maintain a good bounce, but stop you from slipping while chasing down that drop shot.
Firm and Solid: The last thing you want from your tennis court is soft and spongy grass. That might be what you want for a normal garden lawn, but for a tennis court you want a firm and solid base that will lead to some great rallies. To do this effectively and efficiently, try using a ballast roller to compact the surface of your court and do this once a week, or at least every other week.
Regular Watering: One thing every lawn needs, especially in the spring and summer months, is water. That’s what will keep your grass resilient and able to keep growing despite the footfall of you running on it. As such, make sure you give your court a good sprinkling of water after every use.
Seasonal Scarification: We wouldn’t recommend doing this at the start of your tennis season, but at the end of each season it’s wise to perform a mechanical scarification treatment to allow your lawn to prevent too much soil compact and allow your lawn to recover.
Autumn Aeration: Towards the end of the year, when it’s too cold to play, it’s a very good idea to book in an aeration treatment to improve your grass court’s drainage during the wetter months, while also encouraging deeper rooting, which will lead to a strong, more resilient court.
Seeding & Top Dressing: From your scampering runs along the baseline to where your doubles partner played at the net, there are always areas of a court that get worn out over the course of a summer’s worth of tennis. These areas should be seeded to help the grass grow back in time for the next season. It’s also worth adding a top dressing to keep your turf quality as high as possible.
This might sound like a lot of work, a lot of maintenance and a lot of upkeep, but that’s okay because you have us. Whether you want a specialist to maintain your grass tennis courts or you need us to come and fix a problem, such as water logging or drainage, we’ve got your back.