We’ve invested in cutting edge equipment, conducted extensive research, and staffed our team with individuals that are proven winners in the sports turf scene. All of this means that the services we offer are executed by knowledgeable people and done with equipment that is industry-best. What you see below are a few of the services that we recommend.


Overseeding? Verticutter? Slit-Seeding? Slice Seeder? What to do!?

Overseeding? Verticutter? Slit-Seeding? Slice Seeder? What to Do!?

Caring for sports turf can be difficult, not only due to the wear-and-tear from constant use by athletes, but because those responsible for the turf may not have the knowledge necessary to keep the turf healthy and looking attractive. Often, sports turf is managed by small municipalities, school districts or park services that have not had the benefit of extensive training in the maintenance of the turf used for sports. Therefore, it is important to understand the differences between the many methods for preparing and maintaining turf.


Overseeding is the process of adding seed to or over existing turf, and can be accomplished in a variety of ways. This can occur before the season begins or to address problems that develop after the seasons begins. During sports seasons, high traffic areas can get worn away, allowing brown patches to develop on the field. These areas include:

• Soccer and lacrosse goalsTurf-Outfeld-Overseeding-CWST
• The center of football and rugby fields
• Sidelines
• Outfield areas of baseball diamonds
• Entry and exit points

In those cases, overseeding the entire field Is not necessary, but by overseeding the area as soon as thin turf develops can help avoid the formation of bare spots. However, it is important to choose grasses that germinate and establish quickly, such as ryegrass or festulolium. These grasses germinate in three to five days. Ref Sports Field Management Magazine


One overlooked method for boosts turf health is the use of a verticutter. A verticutter has vertical blades, normally arranged between .025 and 1.5 inches apart on a disc that dredge up thatch and open the canopy in order to allow the turf to breathe. Not only does the process remove excess thatch, but it also extracts organic material at or below the plant crown area. The machine is often confused with an aerator, but the machines provide different benefits. Verticutters dig deeper into the turf, severing stolons and stems, creating visible results. After using a verticutter, it is important to make a pass over the area with a mower to remove any residual debris that could cause damage to the turf surface. Ref Grounds Mag

Slit or Slice Seeding

A slice or slit seeder cuts grooves into the soil placing seed in the grooves in order to provide good seed to soil contact. The slit or slice seeder actually overseeds as it removes thatch and opens the canopy to provide better nutrition for the turf. Slit seeders offer a higher germination rate than broadcasting seed that may not come into contact with the soil. However, it is possible to use a verticutter to create the slits and then broadcast seed immediately after in order to allow the seed to fall into the slits cut by the verticutter. A slice or slit seeder combines both processes which can be a time and money saver, especially for heavily used sports turf fields.

Overseeding is a critical part of maintaining healthy, green sports turf. It can eliminate high-traffic areas and keep the field looking lush throughout the season. Whether using a verticutter and broadcaster to overseed the lawn or a slice/slit seeder, overseeding should be done whenever it appears that areas of the field are getting thin due to high-traffic. To learn more about verticutters, seeders and overseeding, visit us at Commowealth Sports Turf by phone or online today.


Drainage and Irrigation For Your Sports Turf

Drainage and Irrigation for Your Sports Turf

Commonwealth Sports Turf Services has improved and maintained quality sports turf since 2003, with 31 years combined sports turf experience in Richmond, Virginia. Keith Kitchen, president, started a residential turf and landscaping company, Luxury Lawns, who were contracted by several high profile sports complexes to maintain their turf. Keith’s vision grew and his creative approach to innovative services supports the basics of turf science facilitating pristine fields for any turf environment.

Turf Services in Virginia

Commonwealth Sports Turf Services include golf course greens, high school athletic fields, football fields, soccer and baseball fields, rugby fields and county parks.

CST analyzes all details of your unique sports turf situation. Your root depth, soil compaction and heavy traffic areas are all relevant to the health of your sports turf. Aerating impacts your greens but do you know to what degree is too much or not enough? Knowing what your sports turf need are questions that have scientific answers. Each turf needs a different and varying approach.

First Things First: Soil StudySoil Health

Before maintenance for your sports turf can be initiated it is important to study the soil in each field area noting that each soil bed is unique in its own level of nutrients. By studying your soil we can comprehend nutrient composition underlying the medium of growth and supply you with a deficiency report. A discovery document including a graph which represents your soil nutrients where they are now and where they should be in the future for the most durability. An application study is reevaluated each year for good health. Maintenance without a soil study may result in unnecessary treatments or costs.

Mechanical Services: Strategy Action

After your soil study a personalized plan is initiated with needed granular and liquid nutrient chemicals and recommended quantity applications action. Your sports turf may be scheduled for core aeration, deep core aeration, top dressing or verticutting, whichever fits your maintenance needs.


Commonwealth Sports Turf uses cutting edge equipment, investigates in-depth research and their employees, with proven abilities, make CST both professional and gives them the ability to provide best maintenance practices.

Monthly Strategy

Communication is a key factor to our client’s field progress addressing concerns and planning project strategies. Meeting once a month helps to ensure evaluating health of sports turf through planned usage.

Core Aeration: Improvement and Predictability

Your strategized services to maintain your turf may vary from removing thatch or deep tining greens. However a main factor for peak performance, in any sports turf, is core aeration also referred to as coring, spiking, slicing or soil cultivation.

Deep Tine Aeration

Allowing maximum aeration with the least impact for turf usability is deep tine aeration. Core aeration lessens possible soil compaction which can result in hardening the surface being played.

VerticuttingMechanical Services

Verticutting removes thatch from Bermuda turf, a necessity to plant health. Thatch is an excessive build-up of clippings prohibiting the penetration of oxygen, nutrients and water to root area. Vericutting thins grass increasing drainage allowing leaf blades therefore improving aesthetics for ball roll and playability.

Core Distribution

Cores are collected using a turf sweeper then reapplied to areas needing viable roots, which can grow immediately.

Top Dressing

Sand and compost or a combination of the two, are inserted in the soil profile creating a cha decreasing soil compaction and leaving a better playing area for oxygen and nutrients to drain into the soil root.

Keith’s vision grew and his creative approach to innovative services supports the basics of turf science, facilitating pristine fields for any turf environment here in Virginia.


Braves’ New Turf Under Close Scrutiny

The Atlanta Braves

The Atlanta Braves, in the not to distant future, will be playing in a new stadium on new turf. This has many fans, players, and coaches quite nervous, and excited. The turf played on at Turner Field was always one of the Braves advantages. Other teams would visit Turner field and not be able to handle how the ball would play off the turf. The Braves knew how to play it and this is why so many great fielders played on the Braves ball-club.

Many companies are most likely bidding on this project. the question comes back to the best turf to use. Do they join the likes of many other ball fields and use artificial turf, or do they use a grass like they have been using in Turner Field. For your information, the sod they have used at Turner Field is a Bermuda Grass that is drought resistant. This is a good grass to use on Southern stadiums, where in Northern stadiums, Kentucky Bluegrass is usually the choice.

A wise choice would be to seek advice from a turf provider in Richmond. Commonwealth Sports Turf Surfaces is the leading authority on the best playing surfaces for stadiums. They can not only advise on turf choices, but they can provide a comprehensive maintenance plan that would make the players and owners proud of their turf.

New Turf Considerations

When installing turf on baseball, football, and other sport’s fields, there are many factors that need to be considered. Commonwealth Sports Turf would consider:

  • Player Safety. This must be the first and foremost factor. No team can afford to have injuries because of the turf used on the field.
  • Durability. The turf gets a lot of abuse from cleats and other actions. It needs to be able to withstand all of it.
  • Irrigation. Real grass needs water. Consideration needs to be given on how the grass will be watered and fed.
  • Drainage. Too much water can kill grass. There needs to be a good drainage system.

A plan needs to be put into place for the best turf to install in the Braves new play area. The best way to do this is to first study the soil that exists there now. From that study, choices will be narrowed down. Will the soil handle a Bermuda grass? Does added soil need to be hauled in? What sort of maintenance plan needs to be instituted for the best results depending on the climate?

All eyes are upon the owners and managers of the Atlanta Braves to see what the plan will be. Will the new playing field be fast like Turner Field was in the days that Chipper Jones played? Will they slow it down with a longer and thicker grass that could also cause injuries?

Yes, it is true: the Braves’ new turf is under very close scrutiny. Commonwealth Sports Turf Surfaces.

Image Credit:

Turner Field: Home of the Atlanta Braves by Geoff Livingston

Core Aeration

Improve Your Turf with Core Aeration

From golf courses to football fields and county parks, each turf requires a slightly different touch. Maintenance services can vary from deep-tinning greens to removing thatch from fields; however, there is one task that is crucial for keeping every form of turf in peak performance condition. Core aeration, also known as soil cultivation, coring, spiking, or slicing, is this key maintenance task.

Turf_aerationAeration is a natural process where air is exchanged between the soil and surrounding atmosphere. Core aeration, the mechanical optimization of this process, allows sports turf managers to step back and relax while an aerator machine maximizes the natural gas exchange. Additionally, aerator services can reduce the amount of soil compaction, which can harm a turf’s soil profile and harden the playing field. While compact soil is a crucial element of building construction, the reduction of air pockets in a playing field can lead to serious injuries in athletes.


Ensuring athlete safety starts from the ground up, and the aerator services of Commonwealth Sports Turf Services are indispensable in this aspect of turf maintenance. Since the type of aeration often determines the effectiveness of turf treatment, Commonwealth Sports Turf Services utilizes the John Deere Aercore, which pulls three to four inch cores on two by two spacing. This aeration type generates core holes that are close and deep, allowing oxygen, water, and nutrients additional access to the root zone. Benefits of aerator services expand to include reduced water runoff, improved fertilized uptake and use, and improved resiliency and cushioning.

Perennial_RyegrassKeep in mind that aerator services should be scheduled depending on the extent of turf usage and the grass type. The majority of turfs greatly benefit from annual aeration; however, some heavily utilized sporting fields may require two or more aerations per year. To plan an aerator service, pay attention to the grass type. For cool-season grasses such as perennial ryegrass and Kentucky bluegrass, spring and fall are the best times to aerate. For warm-season grasses, such as Bermuda grass and zoysia grass, the time recommendation is mid-spring to early summer. To prevent weed competition, do not aerate when warm season grasses are dormant.

Following core aeration, Commonwealth Sports Turf Services recommends an additional service where a turf sweeper collects cores and redistributes them to areas in need of repair. While topsoil and seed are often the primary products used for distressed areas, cores, which contain viable nutrients and roots, are a better option as they begin growing immediately with proper care.

Maintaining a sports turf does not have to be a difficult or lengthy process. Commonwealth Sports Turf Services invests in cutting edge equipment and highly trained individuals to provide all businesses with the best options in aerator services. We would love to show you how these products work, and how we can work with your turf. If you are interested in a demo, click the link at the bottom of the page.

Image Credit:

Rock Dennis tackles Taylor Wardlow by John McStravick
Ear of Rye by Arthur Chapmen within Wikipedia Commons


Winning the War on Weeds

Winning the War on Weeds

Several products have been introduced over the past few years that promised to control broadleaf weeds. Several of these products have shown promise in fighting weeds in sports turf, although the use of one, Imprells, was suspended in 2011 due to suspected injury to pines, spruces and other ornamental plants. In fact, the number of products registered to control broadleaf weeds in sports turf has doubled since 2000. Before using any herbicides, however, it is important to consult the label to be sure the product is safe for the type of turf it will be used to treat.

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Mid Atlantic Snow 2014

Sports Turf Industry Outlook for 2014 – Mid-Atlantic Region

Mid-Atlantic Sports Turf Industry

As everyone in the sports turf industry in the area knows, the mid-Atlantic region of the United States has suffered through one of the harshest winters in recent history, with record snowfalls and colder than average temperatures. To add insult to injury, the weather has teased the area with sunny, warm spring day temperatures followed by snowstorms or frigid temperatures, sometimes within a 24-hour period. This means that many Virginia sports turf experts expect specific problems with turf in the coming spring.

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CWST - JR Tucker Clear

How To Manage Turf When It Wont Stop Snowing

Virginia has a mild climate and normally winters are warm and mild. In recent history, January and February of 2014 have been abnormally cold and filled with rough weather such as frost, ice, snow, hail, freezing rain, and high winds. While winters do come and go, bad weather will always wreak havoc on turf and cause lasting damage if not treated properly.

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Turf In Snow

What is in Store for Turf Management in 2014?

The new year is in full swing so it is only natural that experts begin to focus on the trends in turf management for 2014. Turf management specialists say that everything from an increased improvement in youth fields to challenges in environmental regulations that affect use of fertilizers or pesticides are what is in store for sports fields and other areas with expansive areas of turf.

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Superbowl Turf

Does Superbowl Turf Need to Perform Better?

The Superbowl is, without question, the most popular sporting event in the United States. In fact, according to ESPN, the top three most watched programs in the history of American television have been the Superbowls of 2012, 2010, and 2013, respectively. Viewers tune in to see the best teams in the nation perform at the top of their game. They watch the players, the coaches, and even the advertisements, but arguably one of the most important components of any game remains seen but unnoticed: the turf.
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