Grass Reinforcement Mesh Installation Guide
GR14 and GR11 Protection Mesh
Suregreen GR11 and GR14 are robust, flexible and hard-working grass protection meshes designed to allow trafficking on grassed areas where this would not normally be considered. Easy to install and maintain, our grass protection meshes work best when applied to areas that are reasonably level, even, well drained and with well-established grass growth.
The plastic mesh is applied directly on top of the grass, held in place by steel u-pins, and then the grass is encouraged to grow and entangle with the mesh. In the optimum growing seasons, the mesh would be expected to have disappeared visually into the grass and be virtually invisible within 5 to 6 weeks. This is also how long the mesh takes to become established and ready to use. A spring/early summer installation will allow our grass reinforcement meshes to reach their reach their optimum working condition quickly. However, the product can be installed and used any time of the year as long as allowances are made for grass-growing conditions.
1. Basic requirements to achieve the best results
a. The grass area needs to be relatively flat and no steeper than 1 in 20 fall is advisable.
b. The area needs to be generally even. Gentle undulations in the region are usually acceptable but abrupt ruts and raised areas will need filling in or levelling out and re-turfed. Laying turf rather than re-seeding is better as this will always allow the area to be used quicker as seeding can take a whole growing season to develop the necessary grass structure.
c. The grassed area needs to drain reasonably well. Badly draining land at times of heavy rainfall may allow the ground to become soft and pliable underneath the reinforcement mesh. This may lead to the mesh to be compromised and not perform as expected.
d. There needs to be strong, robust, well-established grass in a consolidated soil. This is needed for two main reasons. Firstly, the pins required to secure the mesh needs the grass root structure and firm soil to provide a good, secure hold for the pins. Secondly, a strong grass root structure is needed to add strength to the mesh to allow the desired trafficking.
Note: Suregreen GR14 grass reinforcement mesh is often used to allow livestock such as horses and sheep to be placed in a winter paddock so that poaching is greatly reduced. If however the area being looked at for reinforcement had been used for livestock prior to installation, it is usually the case that the soil is poached and pot-marked. These irregularities need to be removed or rolled out so that the mesh can sit tightly against the grass to allow maximum entanglement.
2. Installation of the Grass Reinforcement Mesh
a. Prior to installation, the grass needs to be cut short. This will help to make sure that the plastic mesh lays tightly against the ground to allow the swiftest entanglement of grass roots and mesh.
b. Unroll the roll the mesh and allow it to relax for an hour or so to reduce the curve in the mesh. This is achieved by unrolling the mesh and loosely pinning at the ends. To help speed up this process, the mesh can be turned over after unrolling so that the mesh curls down instead of up, and then loosely pin down. This will not affect the efficiency of the mesh.
c. To get the best results for GR11 and GR14, all of the mesh needs to be close-fitting to the grass surface. This is achieved by using the metal u-pins. From experience and as a guide, we suggest that for at least 150 pins are required for a 2m x 20m roll, and at least 50 pins are required for a 1m x 10m roll. The pins are best placed at 300mm along the edges of the rolls and 600mm through the centre. On the edge, the pins can either pin across to the next roll or along the rim when laying a trackway. The u-pins have been designed to fit flush with, or just below, the mesh so that they are not a trip hazard and the grass can be safely mowed.
d. When installing the rolls next to each or in a row, the edges of the rolls are butted up to each other. Do not overlap the rolls. Pin across the mesh so the rolls are joined to each other.
3. General notes
a. For the mesh to reach optimum working condition, the grass needs to be fully intertwined with the plastic mesh. During the growing season, this is usually after about 6 to 8 weeks. Another way to gauge readiness is to start to use the mesh after 3 to 4 cuts of the grass.
b. When it is time for the first cutting, set the mower blades slightly higher than normal and allow the cuttings to fall back on to the mesh. When the installed areas are ready for use, the mesh should be well intertwined with the grass roots and sward and will be less visible. Cutting of the grass can be as normal.
c. GR11 and GR14 grass reinforcement meshes have been designed to reach their full working potential in the quickest time-period with areas that have an established grass structure. When it is the intention to lay the mesh in a region that is devoid of grass, and the area is going to be seeded to establish grass, time will be needed for the grass to develop a strong grass root structure before the mesh is planned to be used. GR11 and GR14 grass reinforcement meshes can still be laid on the newly growing grass and the grass allowed to grow into the mesh. If you wish to test whether it is ready, use a u-pin on site. See if the u-pin will stay in place - if it does, the root structure has established. This is because there would have been no existing grass root structure to help to hold the pin in place, so if it stays in place, it has established. This can be a problem with sandy soils.
d. When the grass reinforcement meshes are installed in hot weather, the sun may cause the roll to expand and ripples to occur in the mesh. This is quite normal and the mesh will settle down as the temperature cools and the grass grows into the mesh.