Thursday, January 30, 2014

Winter Education Vol 7 - Edging Infields

Edging an infield is a basic task that can accomplish many goals. Edging is simply broken into two categories: pre/post-season and in-season.

Edging New Sod

Pre/post-season edging can remove large amounts of turf. In northern climates, Kentucky bluegrass produces rhizomes, which causes the plant to spread. In southern climates, bermudagrass produces both rhizomes and stolons and is very aggressive/invasive on infields and warning tracks. Re-establishing edges before a season can be tricky if proper planning is not taken. ALWAYS measure your edges after your last edging of the season. 

How do you do this? For baselines, stretch a string that your typically lay out for the foul line. Measure each edge off the line and make a simple drawing. (varies) For the infield, place all three bases in the anchors and measure from the back corner of the base to the front edge of the infield. (typically 3 ft) For the base cutouts, use a 100 ft tape and measure for the anchor to the turf edge. (typically 15 ft) For the back arc, take the same 100 ft tape and measure from the front of the pitcher’s rubber to the back arc. (typically 95 ft) Now, all the guessing of the first edging of the spring is a thing of the past! For the warning track, measure off the wall/chain link fence. Then, edge the surface and bring the field back to in-season dimensions.

In-season edging will keep the field not only looking good, but also reduces lips. ALWAYS string up the edges before edging the infield or warning track. In-season, edging should take place every two weeks. If you are edging every two weeks, only grass clippings will be removed.

Now you have the basic info, let’s look at the tools! Pre/post-season edging will require a bed edger and a typical blade edger. Also, to remove the turf, a loop hoe is handy. When edging in-season, the blade edger is the best choice.

Play on!

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