Winter’s on its way

November is one of those “in-between” months, like March. The leaves have all fallen, marking the passage of autumn, but the snow (hopefully) has yet to fly, welcoming the winter season. From a strictly meteorological perspective, there’s nothing particularly noteworthy about this time of year. For those of you managing football facilities, it’s peak season, but for those caring for fields reserved only for spring and summer sports, it’s time to tuck the turf in for a few months. The cleats may have left the field, but your work is not over yet. The steps you take now will have a big effect on the state of your turf come spring. See page 8 of this issue for tips on prepping your field for the winter weather.

Reader response

A couple months ago we asked you, our readers, to participate in a survey to help us learn a little more about the facilities you maintain and the issues you’re concerned with as field managers; here’s what you had to say. Forty-seven percent of you maintain between one and five fields, 20.8 percent between six and 10 and a very busy 28.3 percent of you are responsible for more than 16 fields. Of all those many fields, 67.9 percent of you are handling only natural turf, while 30.2 percent manage a mix of natural and synthetic surfaces. When asked what industry issues you were concerned about you responded with a variety of different topics, including weed control, increased field use demands, weather, rising fuel costs, managing tight budgets and reducing water usage. Overall, the number one concern mentioned by our respondents was government regulations. Finding a balance between keeping fields safe and free of weeds and pests while adhering to increasingly strict standards is certainly a huge challenge, and one that may become even more difficult in the coming year. It’s our goal to provide you with the information you need to succeed in the industry, so look for more information and ongoing coverage of regulations throughout 2013. Thanks to all who took the time to complete the survey, and as always, if there’s a topic you’d like to see covered in SportsField Management, let me know!

Katie Meyers