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Agrostis surface testing

Surface Testing

There are many ways of quantifying the performance of sports surfaces in order to inform their management and improvement. We are able to undertake all of those commonly undertaken for natural turf surfaces:

Surface Quality Tests

Tests of surface quality of existing natural turf sports surfaces include:

  • Ground cover extent

  • Grass shoot density

  • Species composition

  • Sward health

  • Slope, undulation and evenness

  • Hardness


Very obviously, stones are an unwelcome presence in a sports surface. The stoniness of topsoil is extremely variable from place to place and has a huge impact on the nature and amount of work that is necessary to achieve a satisfactory tilth prior to the establishment of a new natural turf surface. We have developed a methodology for the quantification of ‘stoniness’. The methodology is incorporated into our design specifications for activating during the monitoring phase of our projects. It is intended to reduce the frequency with which contractual contentions arise as we have found they often do in relation to this stony subject.

Smoothness and Evenness of Sports Turf Surfaces

In golf, interest may lie in green speed. This is typically measured with the Stimpmeter, a simple device developed in the 1930’s. It is arguable that the smoothness and evenness of golf greens is of as great if not greater significance than green speed. These qualities are, in fact, essential features of most sports surfaces.


Tim Lodge invented a device for the measurement of golf green smoothness - the ‘Lodgemeter’. The patent for this was filed on 22 October 2005 and was granted to the inventor on 9 June 2010 (Patent No. GB2442787). The Lodgemeter represents a completely new idea in the field of golf playing quality assessment and we continue to refine and optimise the design. The principles of its use may readily be extended to any other form of surface on which smoothness is a critical element of its quality.

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