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What happens to the pitches at Son Moix and Son Bibiloni once the season ends?

Head groundsman Sergio Medina reveals what goes on behind the scenes over the summer

Once the curtain closes on the season, it's time to disconnect, go on vacation and recharge batteries to be physically and mentally prepared for the start of next season.

That is if we look at it from the footballer's point of view.

If we put ourselves in the shoes of those responsible for the pitches at the Estadi Mallorca Son Moix and Ciudad Deportiva Antonio Asensio, the end of the season is when the hard work starts to ensure our turf is in the best condition for the next campaign.

"What we do is remove all the topsoil,” says head groundsman Sergio Medina. “All the green and we uncover last year's bermudagrass seed. We reactivate it, sow it with new seed and cover it with sand so that in about three weeks everything will be in perfect condition again.

"We try to do this process in a period of 24 to 48 hours. It is a constant work day and night to be able to bring forward as much as possible the fact of starting to water the seed so that it begins to work. If we can gain two or three days to that growth, we are assured of success when it is time to start using the pitch.

"Normally a little more topsoil is removed to purify the grass even a little more and make sure it is spotless. Generally it is always fine at the training ground as well as at Son Moix, but at the stadium it is necessary to have greater detail.”

 A year's work

With a large fleet of machinery that includes tractors, harrowing machines and seeders alongside a team of seven people, our grounds people’s work extends to every month of the year.

At the end of the season, the transition to summer grass begins and in the early stages of the following year, between late October and early November, the transition to winter grass – known as Rye Grass  –  takes place "which is a slightly less aggressive transition," according to Medina.

It is with this grass that the season ends and requires constant work and attention so that it is always in the best conditions for use.

Water, organisms and sustainability

Our head groundsman also has additional problems to overcome during the summer: "The hotter it gets, the more the grass is a living thing, the more water it demands. With water and heat, fungi and these types of organisms are more likely to grow," 

Speaking of irrigation, Medina highlights the steps towards sustainability and a better use of water that Mallorca is taking: "Apart from irrigating with treated water coming from the street, now with the reform of the stadium we have made some tanks with rainwater collection that will be reused to irrigate the grass."