"Winter" Season for Clay Court Maintenance in South Florida

This short life-cycle review may help your staff deliver better playing conditions during the busiest time of year.  Har-Tru is a very hard angular stone.  The sharp edges of the particles can wear during the playing season as players slide back and forth on the surface.  The accumulation of these small particles are naturally washed off the court during a rainstorm.  The south Florida playing season can be the busiest of the year.  This amount of play usually coincides with the least amount of rainfall during the season, allowing small particles to accumulate of the surface.  A “sticky” surface, “dirty” tennis balls, or “ball marks” on the windscreens are early indicators of small particle accumulation.  When you see these indicators, you know it is time for a quick light scraping and redressing with some Coarse Blend material.

Paper-thin layer of fines building up on the surface

The picture above shows the layer of small particles we are describing.  When the particles are wet, they can be sticky, and slippery.  When the layer dries out, it can become hard and crusty.  This is easily managed with a Lute / Scarifier, a Gator Rake, and some Coarse Blend material.  Har-Tru Coarse Blend is a product that contains the largest particles of the Har-Tru mix.  It is designed to add additional sliding material for the tennis player and agitation to the court surface. 

The idea is to scarify the surface, scrape and remove the fine particles and make a Coarse Blend application of 6 bags per court.  If you can be proactive by removing the “fines” before they become problematic, you will keep the courts in the best possible playing condition. 

Har-Tru Gator Rake           
        Har-Tru Gator Rake                              Zero fine particles accumulated

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