Wiedenmann UK’s Terra Float Air is establishing itself as the seeder of choice for those managing seed projects. It ensures less wastage and virtually guarantees a precise measure.
Distinctive on many levels, the Air has a futuristic look, often described as ‘like a robot’; its head, neck and body are actually a composite of three units in one. A base unit aerates or loosens soil to 30 mm using either spikes or fine slits. Then the top-mounted pneumatic air seeder assures a receptive seed bed either pre or post top dressing. Finally, a brush and roller combination incorporates top dressing materials to the ground before smoothing the surface. The operator works the controls from inside the cab. Memory function control pad stores input and calibration data for next use.
The Air benefits from an absolutely uniform seed distribution, thanks to its pneumatic air flow and deflector system. The air flow is efficient and adjustable so keeps all eight of the pipes moisture free, meaning seed doesn’t ever clog or block the pipes. Depending on grass species and task in hand, any of six seed dosing rollers can be chosen. The smallest is for pure bent seed with dosage rates as low as 0.5 g / m² while there are options for bluegrass-ryegrass, fescue, mixes and coated seeds all the way up to 45 g / m². Simply select the right cup size for the seed type and then the required number of cups in the dosing roller for the sow rate.
Colm Lawler, course manager at the Arnold Palmer designed Tralee Golf Club, Co Kerry, is one of a growing list of turf professionals who has chosen the Air and is impressed by its contribution. Purchased last summer from Wiedenmann UK dealers, Seamus Weldon Groundcare Equipment at Killarney, for him it was easily the best overseeder on the market, combining speed, versatility and precision.
“Our members, and indeed green fee clients for that matter, who can be paying 250€ a round, want the finished article, they don’t want bumpy greens, just a perfectly uniform surface,” he said. “The beauty of the Air is that it’s incredibly fast. In summer after golf, of an evening we will go out and seed all 18 golf greens in four to five hours. We follow on with a light top dress and a roll, and you barely know we’ve been out.”
After regularly using the Air from August onwards he welcomes its thoroughness and reliability. He and his team and have established the settings and quantities that maximise strike rate for the internationally acclaimed Kerry course.
“If you want 3 grammes, you get 3 grammes, if you want 4 grammes you get 4. It’s incredibly accurate. During the growing season we’ll use it five or six times on the greens loading 4-5 grammes per square metre,” continued Colm Lawlor.
It’s straight fescue all the way for us; 90% of our area is fescue, however, only on the walkways will we use a rye fescue mix.
“We are doing a lot of work to the fairways, eliminating bent and rye grasses. As part of our overseeding programme we’ll be out once a month in the growing season, setting at 5-7 grammes, ahead of a top dressing. The Air is so useful to us across the entire site, in and out of season. There are occasions we can go up to 10-12 grammes on the fairways if you want to give them a really heavy overseeding and pre-season we will target a few locations across the course.
Colm Lawlor, his team and construction partners introduced a six hole Par 3 course in 2018. Fast forward a couple of years and already they are into phase two of further reconstruction works at the breath-taking links course. “Basically we drew up a full master plan for the entire 18 holes of our golf course. We’re looking to enhance the shape, movement, improve walk ways and further tie our two nines together. Since October 7th we’ve practically redone three holes, not fully, but we’ve completed three tee complexes, one fairway, one full green. Next year we’ll take on another three holes. All these projects are well worth the effort as they help make consistent improvements.”