Kubota Build For The Future

Kubota Build For The Future: £1.2 million has been invested by leading machinery manufacturer Kubota UK to enhance operational performance and continue to set the highest health and safety standards at its UK headquarters in Thame.

The investment, part of the Kubota UK’s commitment to provide its customers with a first class service offering, includes expanding its office and meeting room space by renovating a previous storage building into state-of-the-art office facilities.  The Thame site has also had groundworks resurfacing completed to enhance traffic flow around the site, as well as refurbishment works carried out to its industry leading Training Academy and Research & Development (R&D) centre.

Kubota Build For The Future

The improvements also include a new cantilever racking system that will help streamline its inventory, offer more space to hold stock and help maintain its ‘first in, first out’ (FIFO) supply method. In turn, customers will experience an even better service, ensuring they receive the required machinery parts exactly when they need them and in the best condition.

Supply Chain Manager at Kubota UK, Solly Wilson, said: “The investment into our operations at Thame is a great example of our commitment to future proofing our business, ensuring the right infrastructure is in place and that we are always operating efficiently and safely.  By doing so, we can maintain the highest levels of service that we provide our customers.

“The new office and meeting spaces for example give us the opportunity to continue to grow and evolve as a business.  In the last 12 months, staff numbers at Thame have increased, highlighting the need for additional capacity.

“The new cantilever racking system also means we are far better equipped to allocate, monitor and transport products more effectively.  FIFO is a widely-known supply chain method where stock is rotated quickly so that no item sits in the warehouse for too long. If this process isn’t maintained to the highest standard, stock can spend significant periods of time on the shelf, taking up valuable space and potentially becoming obsolete, causing cost issues. It’s simple in theory, but each product has its own unique characteristics that will affect the overall operation depending on how well it’s dealt with.

“With this in mind, it’s vital that we’re able to operate at maximum capacity, not only from an operations point of view, but also from a customers, who need their orders delivered in a timely fashion and in first class condition.”

For more information on Kubota UK and its extensive range of heavy machinery solutions, visit www.kubota.co.uk or call 01844 268000.

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Bobcat Equipment On Supercross Course

Bobcat Equipment On Supercross Course: Europe’s largest ever Supercross course in a stadium has been built using Bobcat compact equipment, in unusual and demanding conditions.

JLFO built the track for the Paris SX leg of the French ‘SX TOUR’ Supercross Championship in the versatile new U Arena in Nanterre in the outskirts of Paris, which was opened in October 2017.  This event had been held for more than 30 years at the Palais Omnisports venue in Paris Bercy, before relocating for the last three years to the Pierre Mauroy stadium in Villeneuve d’Ascq.

Bobcat Equipment On Supercross Course

To build the track for the Paris SX held on 18-19 November, JLFO teams employed a fleet of machines including three Bobcat compact loaders, a Bobcat compact excavator and a Doosan wheeled excavator to move and shape nearly 4000 m3 of soil to prepare the largest Supercross course ever completed inside a stadium in Europe.

JFLO, Supercross Track Specialist

Based in La Bastide-l’Eveque in France, JLFO specializes in organising events in the car, motorbike and quad bike sectors.  With more than 200 major events to its credit, JLFO has forged a strong reputation in the construction of off-road tracks for car, motorbike and quad bike racing, as well as handling all of the logistics to accompany the events.

Many Constraints

The work of the Bobcat and Doosan machines in Paris comes off the back of the Supercross SX events held the last three years in Lille, where the JLFO teams had used a fleet of Bobcat equipment to meet the challenge presented by only three days being available for assembly of the track and just one night for the disassembly, skillfully handling thousands of cubic metres of earth, while at the same time protecting any grass surfaces.

The challenge of installing the track for the Paris Supercross SX in the U Arena was just as immense.  The deadlines were the same with three nights for building the track and only one night to dismantle it.  The first job was to protect the lawn and the soil during the weekend. The construction of the track also had to be done at night by the teams in Nanterre.  So for three nights, JLFO teams were mobilized to deliver the soil and build the slopes, bumps and other obstacles as required for the track.  The Supercross course was finalised on the Thursday before the event, with pilot tests carried out on the Friday.  The biggest challenge was dismantling the track overnight on between the end of Sunday and Monday.  No less than five earthmovers were used, including a Bobcat E62 compact excavator, two Bobcat T870 loaders, a Bobcat T650 loader and a Doosan DX165W-5 wheeled excavator.

Nearly 4000 m3 of Soil

 The volume of soil used to prepare the track was considerable: comprising nearly 4000 m3 on a floor area of ​​10.000 m2.  The soil was transported in ten 20 tonne trucks from a location in Aubervilliers, six kilometres from the U Arena.  The soil was spread in five layers by the Bobcat compact excavators and loaders to create the bumps and hollows of the track.  Only the Freestyle bump was an intrinsic structure in itself, which saved about 400 m3 of soil – it was also covered with earth.

Jean-Luc Fouchet, Founding President of JLFO, explained: “Our three Bobcat T650 and T870 loaders and the Bobcat E62 compact excavator allow us to work with the utmost efficiency.  When you make a hump in the track, you can climb on it and compact it. We can modulate it and we do not need another machine. With compact track loaders, you can quickly move to stand back, look at the shape and correct it if necessary,

The Bobcat T870 loaders are the largest loaders the brand has ever made. To achieve the feat of preparing and dismantling the track in such a short time, JLFO used three experienced Bobcat drivers.  For the duration of the event, Bobcat loaders and compact excavators were at work for the regular repair of the track after the races.

In total, a team of 70 people completed the assembly of the SX track in Paris over three nights and for the disassembly over the last night. The event welcomed over 40,000 spectators on the Saturday and Sunday.  As an operational partner, Bobcat invited some of its customers to attend the show over the weekend.

The team was mobilized again on Monday 20 November in Lyon for the next stage of the SX Tour championship.  As well as Lyon and Paris, Bobcat is also partnering with JLFO to prepare the Supercross tracks at the Montpellier and Amnéville events that form part of the Championship.

For more information on Bobcat and Bobcat products, visit www.bobcat.com

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Reach For The Top With Echo

Reach For The Top With Echo: Safety is a great consideration when cutting high hedges, so dispensing with the need for ladders, steps and platforms is good news. The ECHO HCA-265ES HD articulating hedge cutter is the newest addition to the ECHO range and offers an overall length of 2446mm (cutting length – 536mm), making it ideal for cutting tall or wide hedges without the need for a platform or ladder. Operators can adjust the angle of the cutting head with one hand, helping to reduce downtime for repositioning. The cutting head also includes nine cutting angle presets through 135° for maximum versatility. 

Looking over this new hedge cutter it’s easy to see why ECHO has become a world leader in the development of hand-held power equipment for professionals. Clearly the designers understand the requirements of the applications and optimise performance, durability and ergonomics. In other words, ECHO has considered the environment in which the machine will be used, and the job it will be doing with no compromise to quality. The HCA-265ES HD features a heavy duty magnesium gear case with needle bearings caged in the cutting head, providing added durability and less downtime. The cutting head itself can be folded 180°, making it easier to transport and store between jobs – ideal for the professional user. The hedge cutter also features triple edged blades and a faster cutter speed stroke rate – 4696 (1/min). This effective combination provides a faster slicing, cutting action, ensuring a clean and tidy finish. The blades on the cutting head are nickel-plated and laser-cut for long lasting sharpness, helping the HCA-265ES HD to tackle a variety of different hedges.

Reach For The Top With Echo

The HCA-265ES HD features a powerful 25.4cc professional grade engine, capable of tackling the toughest of jobs. There is also an Easy Start system which allows the user to start the machine faster and with little effort. The shaft grip handle has been ergonomically designed, with the controls grouped close together for ease-of-use, better manoeuvrability and control. A tool-less air filter cover allows for easy access even with gloves on, making it easier to clean the air filters while the commercial-grade felt air filter helps to keep dust and debris away from the engine, ensuring longer service intervals and better engine performance. All of which adds up to reduced down time in maintenance, leaving the professional more opportunities for increased productivity and able to take on extra jobs. Take a look at the ECHO range and one thing overall is apparent. ECHO only builds equipment to one standard and that’s professional. ECHO tools are hardworking, tough, durable and dependable, and an exemplary two-year professional warranty shows this. Find out more from your local authorised ECHO dealer.

You can also visit www.echo-tools.co.uk or call 0800 597 7777 for more information.

For more information go to www.echo-tools.co.uk/shop/hedge-trimmers/hca-265es-hd/

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Rigby Taylor Statement

Rigby Taylor Statement: Peter Corbett, the company’s Chemicals Product Manager says, “Rigby Taylor is delighted that the EU has renewed the licence for glyphosate.”

“The loss of this important active would have cost local authorities many hundreds of millions of pounds to replace with alternative means of vegetation control.

Rigby Taylor Statement

“The industry now needs to take on board the importance of using this active ingredient correctly and in a sustainable manner.

“Rigby Taylor is working on a product stewardship package for glyphosate, which will include all the elements of best practice. The package will include advice and recommendations for managers, operators and other end users on how to use it correctly. There is also a need to educate the general public on its safety profile.

“We expect the UK authorities to re-affirm product labels in the next few months and Rigby Taylor will include these in the stewardship package.

“A key element to ensuring we can continue to have glyphosate as a cost-effective management tool for vegetation management will be to use it in a programme with other products to achieve the desired outcome. Rigby Taylor will also address this issue in its forthcoming stewardship programme.”

Rigby Taylor’s Chemicals Product Manager Peter Corbett says the company will be announcing a product stewardship package for glyphosate, which will include all the elements of best practice.

For more information go to www.rigbytaylor.com

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Heath Engineering To Return to LAMMA

Heath Engineering To Return to LAMMA: After a hugely successful debut at LAMMA 2017, Heath Engineering has confirmed it will be returning to the 2018 show on stand B77, which will be held on January 17-18 at the East of England Showground, Peterborough.

The innovative British manufacturer has been producing agricultural equipment for over seventy years with many customers learning that equipment carrying the ‘Heath Engineering’ name is synonymous with machines that are built to do the job and will last.

Heath Engineering To Return to LAMMA

The Heath Engineering brand and its state-of-the-art technology certainly caught the eye at the LAMMA 2017 Innovation Awards after the family owned business scooped a certificate of merit for the Farm Machinery & Equipment Innovation Award.

Amongst the vast portfolio of Heath Engineering farming equipment, it is products such as the Heath Super Grab which continues to take the industry by storm. In the past year, the company has reported that sales have increased by 125% on the Super Grab – and it’s easy to see why.

The Heath Super Grab is a truly innovative solution to large bale handling. A bale grab with a total ‘free release system’ enables safer bale stacking and loading. Holding of the bales is provided by four uniquely designed Hardox tines. The Heath Super Grab is able to handle 1200mm x 1200mm x 2400mm, 1200mm x 900mm x 2400mm and 1200mm x 800mm x 2400min bales either vertical or horizontal in operation.

Visitors to the Heath Engineering stand can also expect to see a great line up of equipment which includes the following products.

Heath Super Spike

The Heath Super Spike is a bale handling spike specifically designed with road safety transport in mind. Built with strength to allow a 1.5 tonne carrying capacity, the tines fold away for safe road transport position, while the safety bale bar extends for safe bale handing.

Heath Safety Forks

The Heath Safety Forks is another safety focused product. The pallet tines have been designed to fold away for road transport making roadwork safer, while all controlled from the cab.

Heath Super Dozer

With the Heath Super Dozer you can always fill your grain sheds to capacity. This innovative telescopic grain dozer gives an extra 1500mm of powered push. The telescopic and carriage mounting points ensure a fold up vertical position for safe road transport between grain stores and farms.

Heath Super Bucket

The Heath Super Bucket is a high capacity 3 tonne grain handling bucket for farmers that require the fast loading of lorries – saving both labour resource and money.

Heath Handling Jib

The Heath Handling Jib has been specifically designed for use with non-telescopic materials handlers to allow extended handling of one tonne bags safely.

Heath Folding Mirror Kit

No more smashed mirrors from accidental reversing into shed walls! The Heath Folding Mirror Kit is a unique hydraulic fold-up mirror for use on telehandlers with pick-up hitches. It is linked into the pick-up hitch hydraulics of the vehicle to enable operation from within the cab.

Heath Mole and Super Mole

The Heath Mole and Super Mole are robust mole drainers to suit tractors from 100hp to 500hp. Both models come fitted with low disturbance cutting discs and low ground pressure tyres. The Heath Super Mole legs are fitted with floating independent linkages to cope with undulating ground conditions and changing subsurface conditions.

For more information, please visit www.heathengineering.co.uk or call Heath Engineering on 01608 682062

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MClassic Hydraulic Loaders Introduced

MClassic Hydraulic Loaders Introduced: Distributor AgriArgo UK has introduced a front-end loader for the new McCormick X2 Series compact tractor line-up with mechanical parallel linkage fitted as standard for ease of use and added safety.

The McCormick MClassic 25 loader adds to the versatility and usefulness of the 43hp, 47hp and 54hp mechanical drive X2 Series tractors, giving them the ability to load and re-handle materials from manure and feed to gravel and soil, or to lift bales, pallets and small bulk containers.

MClassic Hydraulic Loaders Introduced

“The X2 Series tractors – which replaced our GM models – are small but durable machines that are often used as scraper tractors on dairy farms and for different paddock management and grounds maintenance applications,” says Ray Spinks, general manager and sales director.

“With a loader fitted, the little tractor becomes even more useful, especially as it can get into buildings and other locations that are denied to larger, more powerful tractors and handlers.”

With a lift capacity of 740kg from the ground to the full lift height of 2.60m, the McCormick MClassic 25 loader will typically handle a 530kg payload (measured from the load centre) when equipped with a multi-purpose bucket.

To minimise the risk of spillage back on to the operator – especially important on X2 tractors without a cab – mechanical self-levelling of the attachment is fitted as standard.

“This feature also makes the loader easier to use, of course,” notes Ray Spinks. “Once the bucket or fork has been crowded back, it will remain in the chosen position as the loader arms are raised.”

A quick-attach faceplate makes it easy to switch between different implements and a hydraulic third service is installed for operating attachments such as a muck fork with grab or a four-in-one bucket.

Boom and implement carriage movements are controlled by a cable joystick, making it easy to manipulate the loader and position it accurately.

The lack of joint welds in the loader’s one-piece curved arms adds to the durability of a design that, in its lowered position, keeps the attachment as near the front of the tractor as possible for compactness and good lift performance.

And the matching shape of the combined parallel linkage arms and tip/crowd cylinders not only gives the loader a neat appearance but also ensures the best possible forward visibility.

Two drop-down legs, and quick-attach mechanical and hydraulic couplings, make it easy to remove and mount the MClassic 25 loader, which is available with a selection of performance-matched attachments.

The McCormick X2 Series tractors come with a 12×12 or 16×16 speed transmission, synchro shuttle, and four-wheel drive with a rear diff lock and front limited slip differential.

They can be had with an open operator’s platform and ROPS roll-over protection or with a fully enclosed cab to provide added comfort in all weather conditions.

The new loaders can also be fitted to their predecessors in the McCormick range, the GM Series tractors.

McCormick MClassic 25 loader for 43-54hp X2 Series tractors
Lift height to pivot pin 2.60m
Height beneath level bucket 2.40m
Dumped bucket clearance 2.05m
Dump angle – full height 50deg
Crowd angle – ground level 46deg
Lift capacity – full height 740kg
Payload – multi-purpose bucket 530kg
Standard equipment includes mechanical parallel lift, cable joystick control, quick-coupling hydraulic hoses, quick-attach latches, drop-down parking legs.

For more information go to mccormick.agriargouk.co.uk

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2020 Vision On Soil Biology

2020 Vision On Soil Biology: A new generation of greenkeepers are promoting the huge benefits that soil biology can bring to course management.

That was a key message soil specialist Joel Williams delivered to course managers, head greenkeepers and grounds professionals attending Soil Biology Ltd’s seminar ‘Getting Ready for 2020’ at Harpenden Common Golf Club on 14 November.

2020 Vision On Soil Biology

For too long, greenkeepers had focused on the chemical and physical dynamics of turfcare, he stressed, in some cases without sufficiently considering the third key element – biology.

It is now clear that by nurturing relationships between grass plants, bacteria, mycorrhizae and other soil life such as nematodes, greenkeepers can dramatically improve course conditions year-round, he argued.

By adopting a soil biology approach, clubs can attract greater usage and more members, while enabling greenkeepers to deliver course maintenance more efficiently – a message chiming with young greenkeepers rising through the ranks.

“We are beginning a transition from a mainly mechanical approach to soil and turf health to a balanced focus as part of an integrated system that includes biological processes and systems,” Joel stated.

Mounting pressure on greenkeepers to find alternative applications amid tougher EU controls on applied chemicals had moved soil biology up the agenda, Joel told the audience.

Harpenden Common head greenkeeper Sean Brocklehurst, who sits on BIGGA’s Young Greenkeepers Committee, revealed how soil biology practices and processes using applied products such as zeolites, had transformed “extremely wet, unplayable greens” into golfing surfaces sustaining year-round playability.

“The club has attracted more business because of the improved playing conditions, which in turn allowed us to invest further in improving aesthetic appearance right across the course,” he said.

The greens team works closely with a consultant from Soil Biology Ltd, who visits the club regularly to ensure the strategy is working optimally.

Attending the seminar in his role as course manager at The Richmond Golf Club, BIGGA Chairman Les Howkins added: “No longer is soil biology on the edge of course management as perhaps it was 20 years ago.

“Soil biology has always been vital to turf health but what is critical now is greenkeepers’ understanding of it, enabling them to manipulate it for the benefit of course conditions.”

Outlining the principles of soil biology, Joel discussed the functions, roles and interactions of soil life in golf greens – introducing key groups of organisms in the soil ecosystem.

Delegates learned how to advance soil biology and leverage the most from turf soils by understanding total, exchangeable and soluble nutrient pools, including the biological link to foliar-applied inputs.

Integrated pest management concluded Joel’s overview as he peered into the frontiers of soil biology, turf health and sustainable, resilient golf greens.

Sponsored and developed by Soil Biology Ltd, `Getting Ready for 2020` also included overviews of the products and programmes the company provide for sportsturf maintenance.

Email Paul Adams at paul@soil-biology.co.uk or phone Hillery Murphy on 07342 640650 to learn more about how to introduce soil biology into a course management strategy.

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Golf Club And Street Signs Targeted

Golf Club And Street Signs Targeted: Despite it possibly being a joke to some, many dedicated golfers were not amused.

Greenkeeper, Joe Khumalo and staff, were left open-mouthed when they discovered a yield sign, complete with the pole, stuck in a hole on the number 5 green at the Dundee Golf Club last Wednesday.

Golf Club And Street Signs Targeted

The flag had been tossed to one side. “There must have been more than one person responsible because this sign and pole are heavy,” said Joe.

He explained that the number 5 green is not near to any of the boundary fences and those playing what they thought was a clever joke may have even driven a vehicle onto the fairway to ‘deliver’ the pole.

“It must have been stolen from a street corner nearby. Some months ago the Illovo Drive/Tugela Street street sign was discarded on green number 15. We do not know if someone has a problem with us at the golf club or if they are trying to be funny. Either way, they must stop it as this golf club is for everyone’s use and we should all look after it.”

Joe said he was thankful that the yield sign had not damaged the green as the club on Friday hosted their biggest competition of the year, the Dundee Corporate Classic.

The Courier contacted Frikkie Coetsee of the Endumeni Traffic Department who said he would send officers to the golf club to collect the stolen street signs.

“It is always around the end of November and December that we see a spike in vandalism in the town of our street signs. We can only think it is bored youngsters who are on varsity or school holiday. They should remember that vandalism is a criminal offence and charges will be pressed against offenders. Having a criminal record will seriously dent your chances of finding a job. Those with information regarding the vandalism should please contact the municipality or the SAPS.”

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Reesink Brings Latest Toro Launch To BTME

Reesink Brings Latest Toro Launch To BTME: The GreensPro 1260, Toro’s latest UK launch, will be headlining the Reesink Turfcare stand at BTME 2018. It’s also the first year that Reesink will have two stands. Joining the Reesink stand in Hall M is stand C32 dedicated entirely to TYM tractors to accommodate the range as it expands and where the new T393 will be on show.

Reesink Turfcare’s marketing manager Holly, comments: “There’s lots to be excited about this year. The show provides the perfect place to bring the latest launches from Toro to the UK market and showcasing the latest technology from one of the leading brands always generates a talking point. It’s great to have representation from all brands at the show and it’s right that TYM has its own stand to accommodate the range as it expands. We look forward to welcoming everyone to both our stands to see the line-up and share invaluable advice from our specialist machinery team.”

Reesink Brings Latest Toro Launch To BTME

Toro’s latest launch is the new GreensPro 1260 which takes all the excellent features of the previous Toro GreensPro models and adds a hydraulic drive system to eliminate leaks and prevent potential contamination of the grass, plus overlapping heads for a consistent roll over every pass. The benefit of this is two-fold: uniform smooth greens are achieved in just one sitting and the risk of scuffing during turns is dramatically reduced.

Representing the extensive range of Toro machinery and accessories will be the TriFlex 3420, eFlex 2100, Reelmaster 5010-H, Reelmaster 3575-D, Groundsmaster 4000-D, Workman GTX-E and the GeoLink Precision Spray System simulator, which debuted at the 2017 show.

Irrigation firm favourites for the fine turf and sports sector, including the Toro Lynx PC control software and the Infinity, Turfguard, T5, T7, Flex series, B series and 590 series sprinklers, will also be on stand. For Otterbine the best-selling Fractional five-in-one aerator is joined by the Concept 3, both are versatile and cost-effective aerating systems and fountains that improve water quality and enhance aesthetics.

On the TYM stand will be the latest addition to the compact tractor range, the T393. It has been brought to the UK by Reesink Turfcare because of its perfect positioning to bridge the gap between the compact utility range and the mid-duty range in the TYM line up. It further complements the mid- and heavy-duty TYM ranges, which are represented on stand by the T654. The TE145 flail mower from the recently launched range of attachments from Sicma completes the line up from TYM and indeed Reesink.

For more information go to www.reesinkturfcare.co.uk

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Future Of Disease Control Tracked With New Live Maps

Future Of Disease Control Tracked With New Live Maps: A new disease forecasting tool on the Syngenta Greencast turf management website is now giving a clear picture of disease pressure across the United Kingdom – and predicts where there risk of infection is set to occur and will enable more informed actions.

Live Maps combine accurate weather forecast information along with proven disease prediction models, to foresee and track risks for up to five days before they occur.

Future Of Disease Control Tracked With New Live Maps

Encompassing Google maps, users simply zoom in to their own area for a close up of detailed local information. The maps cover all key turf diseases, along with forecast changes in soil temperatures and a new feature for Grass Growing Potential.

Daniel Lightfoot, Syngenta UK Turf Business Manager, enthuses that one of the great advances of Live Maps for greenkeepers is the ability to visibly track conditions and risks progressing across the country – and giving time to assess action plans.

“Targeting preventative disease programmes during periods of infection risk, but before symptoms break out consistently maintains better playing surface conditions,” he advocated.

Daniel pointed out that STRI research had shown fungicide programmes based on proactive forecasting maintained better conditions using fewer applications over the course of the season, compared to routine application or treatment at the first signs of disease.

“Timing is the absolute key,” he advised. “Live Maps is a new way to better pinpoint the optimum application timing.” He believed that turf managers are going to have to get ever better at prevention in the future, to mitigate the impending loss of iprodione and to meet the increasingly stringent demands of today’s players

“Whilst products such as Instrata Elite have excellent curative activity on early disease stages with in the leaf, the results are consistently better and longer lasting if it can be applied before symptoms have broken out on the surface,” he added.

Danial believes the new Grass Growing Potential maps will be especially useful for aiding Primo Maxx application interval timing – enabling turf managers to focus on periods of peak growth and potentially ease off when conditions are less favourable.

“If you use Grass Growing Potential in conjunction with soil temperature, it could be highly beneficial for timing renovation or over seeding activities to get seedlings off to the best possible start,” he said. “It also has a role for predicting turf recovery and implications for the disease management programme.”

The Live Maps are available now free for all registered GreenCast subscribers, under the ‘Weather’ tab in the navigation bar.

For more information go to www.greencast.co.uk

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