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Even after the end of the Civil War, battles still rage on at the 16th fairway at Ormskirk G.C

Stripping the bottom out of the long rough holds back regrowth and promotes the development of wispier grass varieties

Situated on the edge of the historic market town of Ormskirk and just 10 miles outside Southport, Ormskirk Golf Club was founded in 1899 and is set in 125 acres of mature parkland that once made up Lathom Park, the history of which goes back to the Civil War. In fact, the crescent shaped hollow on the left of the 16th hole is reputed to have been an emplacement for a battery of Cromwell's forces which attacked Lathom House in 1644.

Since his arrival at the club, however, head greenkeeper Chris Whittle has also been raging war, but for Chris this has been on the rough, and not on the Government forces, but with equally as dramatic consequences. Successfully using a Lastec Articulator for the semi-roughs, Chris’s main aim is to take some of the vigorous growth out of the deeper areas by thinning them out with an AMAZONE PH1250 Profihopper SmartCut 4WDi. The cut and collect ability of the Profihopper means that the rough can be stripped out using the scarifying knives fitted in the rotor and the bulk taken away for composting. Removing the material from site takes out the energy of those lush areas of vegetation, slowing down the regrowth process whilst at the same time stimulating the growth of taller, thinner grass varieties and leaving the rough more open - and with the added bonus of being more able to find a ball as well! At this time of year the Profihopper is out on the course twice a week.

The beauty of the 0-turn Profihopper is its manoeuvrability and so is ideal to get into those awkward areas in and around trees. The automatically-functioning 4-wheel drive ensures adequate traction at all times and yet with minimum sward damage due to the intelligent steering system and wheel drive.

The other reason for the arrival of the Profihopper at Ormskirk G.C. is its ability to collect leaves come the autumn. Again utilising the scarifying knives on the SmartCut rotor, the Profihopper will lift any flattened material as well as doing a magnificent shredding job on leaves ensuring that the unique PowerCompactor auger collection system can pack the diced material into the collecting hopper negating the need to run around emptying the machine all the time and speeding up the composting process. Taking away the leaves prevents damage to the sward caused by the anaerobic conditions created by the leaf mat; killing off the grass and stimulating moss growth. And again, just like the need to thin out the rough, the removal of the leaves helps stop the release of nutrients back into the ground as they breakdown which can again lead to much green growth.

At the business end of the Profihopper, the SmartCut rotor has 36 pairs of free-swinging flails arranged in a chevron effect meaning that the cut material is transferred away from the edge of the deck for a clean pick up in both wet and dry. This chevron effect also means that there are always blades presented at the shear bar for an even loading on the engine and a constant feed of material into the auger system and thus the minimum of power needed to cut and transfer the grass. With a range of cutting blades available that can be tool-lessly changed in a few minutes to suit the application, the Profihopper 4WDi can be switched over between fine turf mowing using the H88 flails through to rough cutting with the H77 or, using the H60 blades, longer cut lengths can be left or they can be used in conjunction with the scarifying knifes for maximum depth of thatch removal out of the bottom of the sward. The use of the 2mm or 3mm knives is dependent on the aggressiveness of the scarifying operation, even to the degree where the Profihopper can be taken onto tees, greens and greens approaches if required.

To try a Profihopper to assist you in your battle against growing grass then call 01302 751200 to book your demo now or click here