Loading articles...

Crews still waiting to prep playing fields in Vancouver

Last Updated May 5, 2017 at 12:05 am PST

FILE PHOTO: Playing field at Hillcrest (Courtesy Howard Normann)

The rain and cooler temperatures have put playing field maintenance behind by about three weeks

Playing fields in the Lower Mainland are slippery because this weather has prevented roots from growing

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The almost-constant rain and cool weather over the past few months means playing fields are not in the shape they should be in.

Crews are eager to get going on their usual spring-time grass prep.

The weather has already impacted a lot of soccer players – with some teams just not opting to play on wet fields. That’s been a bit of a blessing for the grass – less trampling when the sod is at its weakest.

What field maintenance staff are waiting for is warm weather – specifically, daytime temperatures that are a consistent 14 degrees for about five days.

In the meantime, the fields await to be seeded and aerated.

“The fields are slippery. The turf is loose under your feet. The grass hasn’t had a chance to really get established in the root zone. So it’s definitely a bigger challenge,” says Howard Normann, director of parks with the Vancouver Park Board.

“We need our roots to grow and bind the turf. You need a good root mass so you don’t get that feeling that you’re on a carpet on top of a hardwood floor.

He figures they’re about three weeks behind schedule.

And as for those bare patches on playing fields? Normann says the great thing about grass is, it goes dormant when conditions aren’t the best, but it does grow back.