Wednesday, March 30, 2011

FS 50 at Zionsville High School

This past weekend the J&D Turf Crew was at Zionsville HS installing FieldSaver 50 amendment on the baseball and softball fields. The fields were very soft coming out of winter due to 2 factors. An absence of the correct sand sizes and the lack of clay in the existing mix. So, enter FS 50 amendment.

The first photo simply shows the pile of FS 50 in the parking lot at ZHS

The next 2 photos below shows the adding of the FS 50 into a topdresser and topdressing the FS 50 on the softball field. It is critical to add the FS 50 with a topdresser

The next photo below show the softball infield with one pass of the blecavator on the back arc. When using the FS 50 product it is critical to blec the material into the existing infield to a 3-4 inch depth.

After blecavating and rolling the infield, the nest step is laser grading. A photo of Tom on the laser grading is below

The photo below is after the laser grading is complete. This is before the addition of calcined clay

To learn more about Zionsville High School Athletics, click HERE

To learn more about J&D Turf go to

Play on!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Newest Baseball Field in Indiana - Continued Spring Green Up

On Thursday of this week I stopped by and had a brief field day at Wabash College. Wabash has the newest baseball field in Indiana. The field opened this spring.

The photo below show the mound and the infield looking out into the RF gap. The turf is 100% Kentucky bluegrass on a sand cap rootzone. The infield is Natural Sand Dura Edge Classic infield mix and the mound and plate consist of Dura Pitch mound clay. Both surfaces are topdressed with Turface Heritage Red Calcined Clay. As you can see the turf is not as green as some of the ryegrass fields we have been following. In my opinion, it is not a big deal, the field plays well, but bluegrass is slow to green up. So, if your field is not as green as the rival school, it may be the turf that is on the field!

The next photo shows the new dugout at the field. The dugouts contain a nice storage area at the end of each dugout.

The photo below was taken from the plaza looking onto the field. As you can see the school decided to install a halo around the plate. I will cover the question - "Do you think a halo is necessary?" in a later blog post.

The final photo was taken from the field looking back at the plaza and the seating bowl. Simply stated, wow! A brick backstop, red chair back seats, and a netted backstop make this area one of the nicest college facilities in Indiana.

To see a link about the new facility click HERE

Go to to learn more about J&D Turf

Play on!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

A Few More Spring Items.......

I was at the University of Indianapolis yesterday to tour the new softball field we constructed in the late summer 2010. The photo below shows the new field. The turf is 100% ryegrass and the infield is Natural Sand Dura Edge Collegiate Infield Mix.

The photo below is from the UIndy baseball field. This is a 90% ryegrass surface. The reason for this photo is to show the benefit of a reel mower. The field is cut at 1 1/2 in with an older version of a Toro reel mower. The pattern looks very nice.

My final stop of the day was to DePauw University. I wanted to show a photo of a dugout design that is eye pleasing. As you can see, concrete was add to extend the dugout towards the playing field to gain more sun in the dugouts during the cool spring play. Also, netting was added and yellow padding was added to the railings, holding true to the school colors.

Don't worry Wabash fans, there will be Wabash photos tomorrow.

Go to to learn more about J&D Turf.

Play on!

Monday, March 21, 2011

How Do You Add New Mix to Existing Mix?

I get this question all of the time. So, I figured I would show the process with photos. On Thursday last week, the J&D Turf crew added new infield mix to the existing infield at Huntington Park in Columbus, OH. Head Groudskeeper, Wes Ganobcik and his crew added Field Saver 50 from the Natural Sand Company before we arrived with a topdresser. The FS 50 will increase medium sand content while also increasing the clay content and improving the SCR of the mix. To see a photo of a similar application, click HERE.

The next step is to blecavate/till the existing mix into the new mix. This is the biggest mistake in this process. It is time consuming, but necessary to ensure good soil bonding. Please see a photo of this step below:

The next step is to roll the infield using a three ton roller. A 3 ton roller is necessary to compact the infield and to ensure limited/no settling. A photo of this step is below:

The photo above also shows the size difference between a 1 1/2 ton roller and a 3 ton roller. The smaller 1 1/2 ton roller is a good choice to settle frost heave - i.e - right now and the start of every spring and the 3 ton roller is needed after blecavating/tilling.

Following rolling, the next step is laser grading. A photo of the process is below.

As you can see, Tom is laser grading the 3rd base side of the infield as Ryan is re-rolling the first base side to ready the area for a final laser grading

See another photo of laser grading below.

Below is a finished photo of the infield. As you can see on this photo, our conical laser is on the mound, the infield is graded at a .4% cone for the mound in all directions, from the front of the infield to the back arc. This is how all infields should be graded.

Thanks to Wes and his crew, including Nick, with assistance with the infield renovation. In my opinion, this surface is the front runner for 2011 IL Field of the Year!

To learn more about the Columbus Clippers, click HERE
To learn more about Huntington Park, click HERE
To learn more about Natural Sand, click HERE

To learn more about J&D Turf, visit

Play on!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Does Your Turf Choice Effect Spring Green-Up? - Butler University

I receive this question all the time, "What is the best turf choice for my baseball/softball field?" That is a loaded question and the complete answer to the question is too in-depth for this blog post. Although, the answer is clear when it comes to spring green-up, Perennial Ryegrass is the choice if you want to ensure your field is green for opening day. Case is point, please see the photos above. The photos were taken today (3.20.2011) at Butler University, both fields were renovated by J&D Turf in the fall of 2010. The first two photos show the Butler University baseball field. This field is a blend of bluegrass and ryegrass. A couple of other points with this field/complex. The building in LF is an indoor hitting facility for the baseball program. The infield has been amended using Natural Sand materials in the fall of 2010. The second set of photos show the Butler University softball field. This field is 100% Barenbrug RPR ryegrass. As you can see this field is much greener. This infield was also amended using Natural Sand infield materials in the fall of 2010.

Of course a trip to Butler is not complete with a trip past Hinkle Fieldhouse, home of the Dawgs, on their way to the Sweet Sixteen.

To learn more about Butler Athletics, click HERE
To learn more about Natural Sand, click HERE
To learn more about Barenbrug Seed, click HERE
To learn more about J&D Turf, visit

Play on!

Friday, March 18, 2011

St. Patrick's Day in Ohio

Yesterday I was in Ohio and what a better place to spend St. Patrick's Day, but in Dublin, OH. I stopped by Darree Fields. I visited my first Miracle Field. As you will see from the four photos above, the field is very nice and consists of a running track-like surface.

To learn more about the Dublin Miracle League, click HERE
To learn more about Dublin Parks, click HERE

More on my travels to Columbus later today!

Visit to learn more about J&D Turf.

Play on!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Getting Fields Ready for Spring Play

Stopped by Covenant Christian yesterday. As many of you know, this field is one of the nicest in Indiana. Andy Gossel maintains the field and does a great job. There are four photos above:

1. The first photo shows the foul area in front of the third base dugout after rolling the turf. This practice allows for the settling of the frost heave from a hard winter for turf

2. The second photo shows two great tasks for the spring. In the background you can see the outfield being rolled with a three ton roller and the first nail dragging of the field after the dirt has been rolled with a three ton roller. Infield soils MUST be rolled before play in the spring. No matter the quality of the material, all surfaces will frost heave over the winter and this must be settled before spring play.

3. The third photo shows a picture of Andy's new rigid mat drag. This is the drag of choice for infields as it will smooth the surface while also providing minor leveling of the surface. This is due to the fact that the drag will not roll over high areas and dig deeper in low areas.

4. The final photo shows a neat cutout around the mound at Covenant Christian. It is definitely old school!

Good work Andy!

To learn more about Covenant Christian, click HERE

Go to for more info.

Play on!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Blue Ash - Crosley Field

Good morning.

The weather is warming up, and regular season baseball is just around the corner! The past week I visited the Blue Ash Sports Center. What a great surprise to see a reconstructed scoreboard from the last game played at Crosley Field. The photos above show the scoreboard from two different angles. The facility is home to many tournaments throughout the year. May we see this type of field in other areas of the country?

To learn more about the Blue Ash Sports Center, click HERE
To learn more about Crosley Field, click HERE and HERE

To learn more about J&D Turf, go to J&D Turf is busy this weekend getting baseball fields at Brebeuf HS and Hamilton SE HE ready for spring play. Look for photos of that project soon.

Play on!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

High Silt Infields and Infields with High SCR's

Good morning.

Sorry for the delay in posting this week. My schedule has been extremely busy with travels to St. Louis, Cincinnati, and Columbus, IN.

I wanted to share a couple of photos from 2 fields in St. Louis.

The first photo is NOT of the moon! It is an infield in west St Louis that is extremely high in silt. As you can see this infield has little to no structural stability when the surface is wet.

The second photo shows an infield that has a high SCR. I could not even walk across this infield.

To learn more about Silt to Clay Ratios (SCR) click HERE and HERE

To learn how to add new infield mix to an existing infield mix click HERE

I pulled a sample from both fields, I will keep you updated on the results.

To view our website go to

Play on!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

DePauw and IU

Over the last 2 days, I have traveled the Southern IN route. I wanted to post 3 photos of 2 facilities. The first 2 are from DePauw, where Rob Harper does a great job for the Tigers. The 3rd photo shows the field at IU where Brent Emerick is getting the surface in shape for the Hoosiers. Both facilities have been rolled. Both IU and DePauw use Diamond Pro Products.

For info on DePauw baseball, click HERE
For info on IU baseball, click HERE

Please go to

Play on!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Dayton Baseball

Baseball in Dayton has not been the same since the Dayton Dragons were founded in 2000. EVERY game has been a sellout since the team was founded. In July of 2011 they can set the sellout record for professional sports. Click HERE for more information on the sellout streak.

I visited the new Head Groundskeeper, Dan Jennings, on Monday. The first two photos above show the field and the stadium at 5/3 Field. The third photo shows a neat baseball and bat display as you enter the stadium.

Dan will do a great job for the Dragons. Opening Day is quickly approaching!

To learn more about the Dayton Dragons, click HERE
To learn more about 5/3 Field, click HERE