Professional Green Keeping

Parallel to the gardening market, Vitax is also a key supplier of amenity products to the professional greenkeeper and groundsman, who maintain sportsturf on eg bowling greens, football, cricket and rugby pitches.

The driving force to establish these products from the 1960s onwards in the burgeoning leisure, recreational and sports market was my uncle, Douglas Gooding. Trained in agronomy, the science of cultivating and utilizing plants for various uses, Douglas was the Technical Director of Synchemicals Limited, and was completely dedicated to his chosen work. He found time, apart from his own research, to travel the country, enthusiastically lecturing to groundsmen, parks authorities , horticulturalists, Institute of Groundsmanship branch associations, indeed talking to anybody with a passion and interest in producing better plants or greener turf. In his private life, he was an excellent plantsman.

At exhibitions and in his countless talks and lectures on the subject of turf, road verges, fairways etc he expounded the use of weedkillers, insecticides and fungicides as a source of valuable technical assistance to sportsturf professionals in their work.

There was also a Synchemicals Spraying Division, which provided a spraying service to local authorities needing to apply these professional products from a fleet of landrovers fitted with spray booms. One notable local ( to London SE1) user was The Tower of London.

With greater emphasis on environmental issues and increased legislation, Vitax began to move away from these pioneer products from the 1980s onwards to increasingly focus on nurturing products to enhance soil conditions and strengthen the plant and grass in order to better resist disease and drought.

Vitax Amenity Today

Vitax Amenity today offers an excellent technical range of fertilisers and advice to professional end users. Its brands in this market place include 50-50 liquid fertilisers. Why 50-50? Answer; 2 ways to feed - unlike solid granular fertilisers, it works through the foliage as well as through the roots.

Vitax Enhance range is exactly that for fine turf, a bio-active fertiliser containing a microbial component that increases resistance to pathogen attack to enhance nutrient uptake and utilisation.

Many of our products are used to maintain in good condition all sizes and types of grass areas including race courses, lawn tennis, bowling greens, rugby stadia, football pitches, grass hockey, baseball grounds, at grass roots level through parish councils, schools , academies, sports clubs and international venues.

Secrets of the Professional Gardener...

Receiving feedback and advice from professionals users has helped us over many years develop a fruitful and ongoing relationship and also has yielded a host of innovative ideas and trusted products in turn which are ideal for the amateur gardener and/or the professional user.

Indeed the title of this section was the name of a free garden guide published by Synchemicals Limited in the 1970s, in which my grandfather, Brian, acknowledged the debt due to the professionals for generously sharing their gardening and growing secrets, something which is still as true today as it was then.

This outlook has defined and shaped the business since its creation in 1947 and is relevant as a driver for us to, where appropriate, change and reformulate our product range to meet the new demands and challenges of our gardening and grower markets today.

This process

This process also prompts us to revisit and reappraise certain traditional ways and products, some of which seem to have been cast aside or forgotten in the face of modern methods, but still present in the DNA of Vitax.

The Company has a tremendous and trusted heritage from which it can draw and a family shareholding which allows us to take a longer term and independent approach based (excusing the pun) on the rationale of "ploughing profits back into the business".

Top Marks

In 2005 Vitax expanded its amenity products range with the acquisition of the business assets of Supaturf Products. Supaturf Products Limited was a leading supplier to the amenity industry which emerged from Palmers Horticulture originally founded by George Palmer (1854-1934), a pioneering agriculturalist active in the formulation of mineral and organic fertilisers.

Under Vitax, his established range of Supagro organic based fertilisers joined the Vitax amenity product range and the Supaturf professional range of turf line marking machines, paint and systems became a separate division.

Used by professional groundsmen and greenkeepers in over 30 countries in the world, Supaturf line marking enjoys long standing relationships with an array of sporting venues.

In the UK and Ireland the knowledge and professionalism of groundsmen is highly rated driven by the demanding standards promoted by organisations such as the Institute of Groundsmanship. It is not surprising that this talent is in high demand internationally who take the trusted name and quality of the Supaturf brand with them overseas. One notable example is Paul Burgess, who has gone from Blackpool FC to the Bernabeu, home of Real Madrid.

A Growing Need

A Growing Need

"Success in growing doesn't come about by chance. There is no question of luck. First of all there is the soil which must be fertile, well drained and contain the right and necessary micro-organisms. Essential are the human skills crafted from knowledge gained over years of experience. The 'good earth' and the 'grey matter' working harmoniously in happy combination can produce wonderful results."

This is an amended excerpt from an Elliott Fertilisers ( also a sister company to Vitax) guide.

Vitax developed its grower range based on the long standing success of Vitax Q4 and the "Q" range of manures. (There was also a "D" range.) Vitax technical advisors would call on the growers to explain the benefits and merits in cars which boldly displayed the logos "Vitax Fertiliser enriches Britain" and perhaps more down to earth, "The stuff to give your crops".

Q4 features prominently in the Vitax grower range today which has been developed to provide the commercial horticultural grower of every type of plant from bedding and nursery stock, ornamentals, trees through to salads, fruit and vegetables- everything required to produce healthly crops.

In long term partnership with Vitax

We are strong and active supporters of the trades in which we operate being members of numerous trade associations and groups. We have a team of agronomists, who will offer support and technical advice to our own sales people, distributors and end users, as well as a dedicated customer support service.

Our team of retail sales area managers are available to personally train and give guidance to garden centres and nursery staff about trends, product usage etc.

We are keen distributors of knowledge and know-how to help growers and gardeners alike ever desirous to make the trade and pastime as rewarding as possible, supported through this website.


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