What It Takes to Make a Football Field

Watching one of the most lop-sided games in Super Bowl history and a slew of mostly under-whelming commercials tends to makes the mind wonder.  When your life consists mostly of making grass healthy and green, your thoughts go to the field beneath the game.

The game in New York was held on synthetic grass, so then I started thinking about the challenges of making what is essentially big pieces of carpet look like real grass.  Hello, Google.

Here’s what I learned:

  • The field consisted of over 1.4 billion blades of synthetic grass
  • Since the field was outdoors and the weather was cold (not as cold as originally predicted, but certainly colder than last year in New Orleans!), there was concern that the paint on the field wouldn’t hold to the surface.  They actually brought in huge heaters to help the paint hold.

While the task was certainly daunting, the artificial surface seems to be a bit easier to manage than using real grass.  For instance, when college football held their National Championship game in Pasadena this past January, they used real grass.  And from what I see, it was a much more involved process:

  • Since there was a game just a few days prior to the Championship game time was short – the process of laying the new field starting just 2 hours after the Rose Bowl finished.
  • The short time-frame led them to lay the new field OVER the old field – which is not typically done.
  • The field consisted of over 110,00 square feet of overseeded sand-based bermuda grass grown specifically to be the field for this game.
  • The sod consisted of 50 foot long, 3.5 foot wide rolls cut to 1.5 inches thick – each roll weighed about 2500 lbs.
  • It took 50 truckloads of sod to make the field.
  • Between 400 and 600 gallons of paint were used to make the logos and endzones.

It just goes to show you what can be done when you have virtually unlimited resources.  Thankfully, caring for lawns in North Texas, even with our brutal Summer heat and frequent drought conditions, is far more manageable.

 

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