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Brecon RFC discovers its roots

You don't have to be a premier rugby club to have high ambitions. Brecon RFC may not be one of the largest rugby clubs in the UK and hopes of becoming a premier league player may well remain a dream for a long time yet. In the meantime it is proud of its long history within the game of Rugby Football. The first recorded match played by a Brecon team can be traced back to 1868 and the club was a founder member of the Welsh Rugby Union successfully celebrating its centenary during the 1979/80 seasons. It is the passion of Brecon RFC and so many regional clubs like it that keeps the game alive for generations to come. They think outside the box and want the best facilities for their players, despite having access to limited funds.

Improvements had been made to the main pitch in the past, when it was leveled by moving top soil from one end to the other. Unfortunately, the side effect of this was consistent poor grass coverage and weak root structure in the area where top soil had been removed. However, Brecon RFC was not to be outdone by the bigger organisations when they decided to rectify the situation with a renovation programme. They looked beyond what could be considered 'within their needs' and asked for more. Admittedly, the 'more' was right on their doorstep in the form of ORM Professional Products (Brecon) Ltd, but it was National Press reports on the success of the ORM Vermi product range on top level sports pitches, and not their close proximity that brought ORM to the attention of their local rugby football club. Impressed with the findings, Brecon RFC didn't hesitate in demanding the same quality of preparatory products to be applied to their facilities.

Brecon RFC Chairman is Norman Williams. "We had read reports on the success of Vermi product application when renovating sports turf." Said Norman "We also noted that these products were organic, produced naturally and claimed to achieve significant benefits including; promoting healthy, strong root development, drought resistance, and nematode suppression and would also allow us to reduce the amount of chemicals and fertilisers in our maintenance programme. These claims definitely warranted some investigation. In particular we wanted to know how affordable incorporating the Vermi products into the renovation plan would be."

ORM Professional Products produce a range of wholly organic probiotic soil treatments developed to promote biological activity in the soil, suppress nematodes, encourage nutrient uptake and most importantly promote greater root development and sward density.

Clive Pearson, Sales Manager for ORM Professional Products explained how delighted he was that Brecon RFC showed such enthusiasm to try something new and embrace an innovative approach to encourage new and sustainable growth on their rugby pitch. "We demonstrated just how accessible this material is to any club or organisation however large or small. The Vermi products don't discriminate. They work their magic in any soil, be it a rugby, football or hockey pitch, bowls green or tennis court."

Working together with the club ORM devised a plan of applications to fit in with the renovation schedule which was as follows:

Main Pitch - programme to start April 2008

  1. Harrow & Slit pitch in both directions
  2. Spray pitch with Bayer Spearhead (Diflufenican/Clopyralid)
  3. Harrow / Slit & Roll pitch
  4. Overseed with Bar 7 grass seed mixed with Vermi ~ Pro
  5. Apply 8/9 month slow release Mevina fertilizer
  6. Apply 20ltr Vermi ~ T to pitch
  7. After 4/6 weeks re-apply 10ltr of Vermi ~ T
  8. Apply Vermi ~ T every 4/6 weeks


  1. 3x 5ltr Spearhead
  2. 14 bags Barenbrug bar 7
  3. 14 bags Mevina 28 + 5 + 10
  4. 14 bags Vermi ~ Pro 25kg
  5. 6x 10ltr Vermi ~ T

Total renovation cost per pitch 2455.00 for the season and will be carried out on the other two pitches later this year.

Norman Williams is delighted with the results. "We have root growth where there was none before. In fact we were so confident that the Vermi products work, that we allowed the Brecon Music Festival to be held on the pitch in August this year, knowing full well that we would be able to recover the pitch very quickly with a few applications of Vermi Products."


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