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21°
Today it is clear sky in Ashburn

7 Day Forecast In Ashburn

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    Humidity - 57%
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    Humidity - 67%
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    Humidity - 73%
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    Humidity - 75%
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    Humidity - 76%
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    Humidity - 77%
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    Humidity - 78%
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    Humidity - 80%
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    Humidity - 77%
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    Humidity - 67%
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    overcast clouds - 18°
    Humidity - 60%
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    Humidity - 54%
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    Humidity - 48%
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    Humidity - 45%
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    Humidity - 60%
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    Humidity - 61%
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    Humidity - 65%
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    overcast clouds - 16°
    Humidity - 66%
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    scattered clouds - 15°
    Humidity - 70%
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    Humidity - 71%
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    Humidity - 72%
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    scattered clouds - 13°
    Humidity - 75%
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    Humidity - 79%
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    clear sky - 13°
    Humidity - 84%
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    clear sky - 13°
    Humidity - 88%
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    clear sky - 12°
    Humidity - 90%
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    clear sky - 12°
    Humidity - 92%
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    clear sky - 11°
    Humidity - 93%
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    clear sky - 12°
    Humidity - 88%
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    clear sky - 15°
    Humidity - 75%
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    clear sky - 17°
    Humidity - 66%
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    clear sky - 19°
    Humidity - 58%
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    clear sky - 20°
    Humidity - 50%
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Regular mowing, three to four times a week, is important not only so that it provides the right length of grass to facilitate good ball roll, but also to encourage the grass plants to thicken (tiller) and grow in the right way.

Maintaining the grass in the correct height range will help to prevent disease and moss, as well as ensuring that the woody base of the plant or the ‘crown’ does not become too high up in the plant, which might otherwise produce a lower-quality surface when the individual pitches are cut lower during pitch preparation.

Whilst not essential to the needs of the game, good presentation should be high on the agenda because it enhances the players’ enjoyment of the surfaces and demonstrates pride in your work. Mowing should take place as and when needed, making sure that never more than one third of the total length of grass is removed in any mowing window, and preferably rather less.

A cricket square should preferably be mowed with a properly adjusted pedestrian cylinder mower during the playing season but may be cut with a sharp pedestrian rotary mower at times when the use of a cylinder mower might cause damage due to weight, or where the suction action of a rotary mower is desirable, such as when tree-leaves are present.

Clippings should always be collected on a cricket square because the nature of the soil means that it is not conducive to clippings being broken down quickly and thatch would quickly form.

Height of cut
In spring, as the days lengthen and more light is available to the plant then mowing heights can be gradually reduced, arriving at the playing season mowing height a week or two before the first game.

During the playing season, mowing heights on the square should be 12 to 18mm. The precise height of cut should be a decision based on how the sward is growing, prevailing light levels and the time of year, the standard of play and the frequency of mowing.

Summer mowing heights should aim to encourage a tighter sward but still leave enough leaf for good growth. If the sward is cut any lower than around 12mm on a regular basis then it may prove difficult to get rid of the green colour during pitch preparation as the crown moves lower in the plant, and there may be excess seam movement, as well as making it harder for the grass to grow roots and recover as easily from stress.
If the sward is cut much higher than 18mm in summer there is a risk of a thinner sward. Lengths over around 18mm are perceived to be ‘long’ by players and may not provide good ball roll.

The aim is to choose a height that is manageable, promotes the health of the sward and the characteristics of the grass plant that are desirable for cricket, and of course provides a smooth ball roll during the season.

Benefits

• Clean cutting of the grass plant results in a healthy sward
• Correct cutting heights reduce the stress on the grass plant
• Regularly mowing at the right height assists with pitch preparation
• Improves presentation, which is the first thing that players and officials see

Practical Tips

• Familiarise yourself with the user’s manual, follow all safety information and safe working practices

• Check the cut on the mower before use and if necessary, adjust. A badly set mower will damage the grass plant, potentially damage the mower, or create excessive wear on parts.

• Never mow wet grass.

• Whilst stripes may look pretty when mowing, when done too close to the start of pre-season rolling, this pattern may get ‘imprinted’ on the turf and be visible for months afterwards on prepared pitches. From the month prior to pre-season rolling starting, and up until pre-season rolling has finished, consider cutting in large blocks if cutting across the line of play and cutting the pitches as individual blocks if cutting in line with play. Once spring rolling has finished, you can then go back to stripes if you prefer.

• Reverse the direction of cut regularly to avoid creating too much of a nap.

• Clean the mower immediately after use and maintain it regularly.