History of the Australian turf industry

  • Ransomes Jacobsens "firsts"

    Ransomes Jacobsens "firsts"
    UK company Ransomes Jacobsens have long since been a major player in the Australian turf industry. They have had many "firsts" in the industry such as in 1832 they built the world’s very first lawn mower.
  • Australia's first golf course

    Australia's first golf course
    It is hard to pinpoint the exact date that the links at Ratho in Tasmania opened. However, it was either in 1822 when the Reid family first settled Ratho, or in 1842, when they returned to Ratho from a trip home to Scotland. It is apparent that in the early period of golf at Ratho, there was no formal golf club, it seems more likely that the Reids invited friends over for a game when they felt like it.
  • The MCG was built

    The MCG was built
    The MCG was built in 1853 when the Melbourne Cricket Club had to move from its former site, due to Australia’s first steam train line passing through the oval. Since then, the MCG has become one of the most renowned grounds around the world, hosting international cricket including the first-ever Test and the 1992 World Cup final, numerous VFL/AFL Grand Finals, and the 1956 Olympic Games.
  • Melbourne School of Land & Environment

    Melbourne School of Land & Environment
    MSLE is a school at the prestigious Univeristy of Melbourne, which opened in 1854. The MSLE can be further split into three departments- Agriculture and Food Systems, Forest and Ecosystem Science, and Resource Management and Geography. The Bachelor of Horticulture has recently been changed to a Bachelor of Environments and is the only horticultural degree offered in Victoria.
  • Adelaide Oval

    Adelaide Oval
    The Adelaide Oval has been home to the South Australian Cricket Association since it's opening and the cricket teams, the South Australian Redbacks and the Adelaide Strikers. It is widely considered to be one of the most attractive test cricket grounds in the world.
  • WACA

    The Western Australian Cricket Association (WACA), was officially established on 25 November 1885 under the presidency of Mr JCH James. The WACA Ground was officially opened in 1893 with the first match played on the turf wickets in February 1894.
  • Hawkesbury Agricultural College

    Hawkesbury Agricultural College
    In 1890, after a recommendation by Mr Pudney and Mr Campbell, 4000 acres were made available near Richmond for agricultural activity. The experimental farm was opened a year later with 26 students and was Australia's first agricultural college- Hawkesbury Agricultural College.
  • Royal Melbourne Golf Club

    Royal Melbourne Golf Club
    The Royal Melbourne Golf Club is the oldest golf club in Australia. The first hundred members were also considered the founders but J M Bruce, who was the Club's first Captain and the inaugural President William Knox are regarded as the founding fathers of the Club.
  • The Gabba

    The Gabba
    The Brisbane Cricket Ground, which is more commonly known as the Gabba, was built in 1895. The first cricket game played on the ground was on the 19th of December, 1896, between Parliament and the Press. AFL is also played on the ground, with the Brisbane Lions calling it home.
  • NMIT

    NMIT (Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE) courses are designed to include industry participation with the aim to give students the best employment opportunities once they finish studying. They offer courses in nursery, landscaping, turf management, arboriculture, parks and gardens, floristry, horticulture and conservation at their seven Victorian campuses.
  • Introduction of Kikuyu grass to Australia

    Introduction of Kikuyu grass to Australia
    Kikuyu grass was introduced to Australia in a seed form in 1919. It originates from Eastern Africa and takes it's name from the Kenyan tribe from the area.
  • NSW Golf Club

    NSW Golf Club
    The New South Wales Golf Club Company Limited entered into a lease agreement on the 29th of March 1926. The course is located on the picturesque headland of Botany Bay, about a 20 minute drive from Sydney's CBD.
  • Pioneers of the industry

    Pioneers of the industry
    The likes of Charlie Courtney, John Polley, Gordon Johnston and Frank Turnball are considered pioneers of the Aus turf industry. Follow this link to read an interview with Gordon Johnston.
  • 1930's harvesting methods

    1930's harvesting methods
    The methods for harvesting Kikuyu and Couch turf in the 1930's consisted of placing long battens on the ground 30cm apart and then the turf was cut along the battens with an axe. Then a spade would be used to cut under the turf, before it was rolled and stacked to hold in the moisture. From there it would be put onto horse and carts for delivery.
  • Bayer Australia and NZ

    Bayer Australia and NZ
    With over 80 years experience in Australia and NZ, Bayer develop and deliver high performance insecticides, herbicides, fungicides and seed treatments for the broadacre, horticulture, cotton, sugar cane and viticulture markets specifically for Australian conditions.
  • John Deere Down Under

    John Deere Down Under
    In 1947 the Chamberlein family began Chamberlain Industries Pty Ltd, who manufactured and marketed agricultural tractors and implements. By 1986, the company hit an economic downturn and so merged with John Deere, a company already well established overseas. Since then, John Deere have continued to expand into the Australian and New Zealand markets.
  • Programmed Maintenance

    Programmed Maintenance
    Programmed Maintenance has provided specialist capabilities in the fields of property maintenance and workforce services since 1951. They are still rapidly growing their operations throughout Australia.
  • First Victa mower

    First Victa mower
    Victa began with Aussie innovator Mervyn "Victor" Richardson, who started building lawnmowers in his backyard workshop. The Victa was not the first rotary lawn-mower but it was much cheaper, lighter and easier to use than any previous mowers. Ever since then, the brand has had a cultural significance to Australia, so much so that Midnight Oil sang of lawns always being Victa-neat, and the lawnmowers featured in the opening cermony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
  • Suncorp Stadium

    Suncorp Stadium
    Originally known as Lang Park, the area now known as Suncorp stadium has been used for football, rugby and cricket since 1891. Since then improvements to the ground have been undertaken including the construction of the Frank Burke Stand in 1962, the Ron McAuliffe Stand in the early 1970s and the Western Grandstand in 1994.
  • Rover Australia

    Rover Australia
    Rover Australia has over 50 years experience selling walk behind mowers in Australia. As one of Australia's biggest mower companies they also sell ride on mowers now.
  • Toro Australia launches

    Toro Australia launches
    Toro launched in the US in 1914 and has enjoyed a great run in Australia for over 40 years. It has now expanded to become the largest single supplier of irrigation products to the landscape, agricultural, turf care and domestic household garden markets.

    The Australian Golf Course Superintendents' Association (AGCSA) began in 1981 with the intention of furthering the profession of golf course management in Australia and the Pacific. Since then it has grown to over 1000 members from all states of Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific.
  • Homseglen TAFE

    Homseglen TAFE
    Homesglen TAFE in Victoria began in 1982 with 7000 students and has now grown to over 50,000 students. Holmesglen has four major campuses: Chadstone, City, Moorabbin and Waverley. The offer a range of courses in horticulture, arboriculture, sports turf management, floristry, landscaping, nursery and land conservation and management.

    The Turf Grass Association of Australia or Sports Turf Association as it is known in most states was formed at the MCG in Melbourne in 1989. The TGAA was formed with the purpose of giving all turf managers and trades a single organisation to represent them.
  • Shademaster: Sir Walter Buffalo

    Shademaster: Sir Walter Buffalo
    The first soft leaf buffalo grass, Sir Walter, entered the Australian market in 1996. It was more resilient to disease, pests and fungus than other grasses like kikuyu and couch that had previously been popular. It was drought resistant, thrived in shade and sun and stayed green and lush throughout the year.
  • ANZ Stadium

    ANZ Stadium
    ANZ Stadium was built for the 2000 Sydeny Olympics. It is the only venue in the world designed to host five professional sports – rugby league, rugby union, Australian rules, football and cricket.
  • Syngenta

    Syngenta was formed in 2000 by the merger of Novartis and Astra-Zeneca's agribusinesses. An agricultural company with a focus on research and crop protection and development, they aim to look to the future. Despite being quite new, they have a long scientific history.
  • Etihad Stadium was opened

    Etihad Stadium was opened
    After two years of construction and more than a decade of planning Etihad Stadium was opened. The $450 million venue was unveiled when AFL fans attended an Essendon versus Port Adelaide game. The stadium is designed to bring supporters as close to the action as possible, and it has been said that the intimacy and noise of the crowd helps to generate the atmosphere of an ancient Roman Colosseum.