Helping councils stay green*

One of Melbourne’s major city councils has turned to Toro Australia to help it improve and maintain its sports grounds, parks and gardens.

The City of Glen Eira in southeastern Melbourne has around 70 hectares of open space and sporting facilities it maintains on behalf of almost 130,000 ratepayers.

Each of these sports fields, parks and gardens has its own unique irrigation requirements that are met through a network of sprinklers, drippers and, in some cases, hand watering.

Computerising and automating these functions is key to ensuring the best possible results with the most efficient use of staff, water, fertiliser and time.
Glen Eira recently completed a $400,000 upgrade of its irrigation system, adding a new generation Toro® Sentinel® Central Control System, Toro® Turf Guard® sensors, as well as four new weather stations.

The Council’s Grounds Maintenance Coordinator, Mr Peter Todd, said the new Sentinel system is designed to meet the diverse irrigation requirements of sports fields, parks, garden beds and trees.

He said the previous central control system had been installed some 15 years ago and had reached its use-by date.

”We’ve replaced the old central control system and have incorporated the remainder of our smaller parks into the new Sentinel system.

“One of the main reasons we chose Sentinel was that it could incorporate up to 16 separate programs.

“While other systems are available that can provide multiple start times, they did not have the flexibility we needed for our irrigation needs.”

The Sentinel system, together with its related sensors and weather stations, can operate by itself or can be easily adjusted to take into account the different requirements of winter and summer watering.

Toro’s Turf Guard System is a key part of the upgrade.

“Turf Guard provides significantly more data than traditional soil moisture monitors, which only indicate when it is time to irrigate,” said Mr Todd

“Turf Guard sensors also provide information on soil temperature and salinity levels, which are important in maintaining high quality grounds.

“These sensors take out the guess work and ensure fertilisers are only added when they are needed, which saves money and provides a better result.”

For more information visit

*Copy supplied by Toro Australia