Tuesday, March 12, 2013

2013 Spring Greens Aerification & Graden Contour Sand Injection

     It's that time of year again! Spring is soon to arrive and so is the time for aerification. One of my all time "favorite" comments from the members and patrons at a golf facility is " Just when you get the greens good, you have to go and mess them up!" To those who don't understand all of the intricacies of Turfgrass Management, I can understand this complaint. But, what they fail to realize is that aerification is a vital part of ensuring the long term success and quality of a putting green for many years to come.

     Aerification is the mechanical process of creating air space in the soil that promotes a healthy rooting system for natural turf.  Healthy rooting systems are an integral part of a successful golf course management program. Turfgrass on golf courses sustain a significant amount of stress and constant pounding due to foot traffic and maintenance equipment. By removing cores from the compacted  soil, an infusion of air, water, and nutrients enhance the turf by bringing a resurgence of growth, and keeping the turf durable during stressful conditions. Failure to perform this simple maintenance can result in poorly drained soil, thin Turfgrass stands, and continued problems with disease.

     The Turf Care Facility staff has perfected this process and has it down to an art. We have a multi-step process, that when finished, leaves the green fairly smooth and putt-able

     This year, we are utilizing a Graden Contour Sand Injection unit after we aerify the greens. A Graden Contour Sand Injection unit is an aggressive verticutting machine, that allows the cutting reel to float with the undulations keeping a very consistent depth of operation. The main benefit of sand injection is that as soon as the grooves have been cut, dried sand flows and accurately fills the grooves before any traffic such as footprints or wheels are able to close the grooves.

     By utlizing a Graden Contour Sand Injection unit, we are able to remove large quantities of organic material from the greens and replace with fresh sand while not  inhibiting recovery times. We have also found that after utilizing this machine, surfaces have instantly been firmed compared to areas cored or not cultivated. Incorporation of this quantity of sand by dragging would have led to rough abrasion on the tender plants, but, by using the Graden Contour Sand Injection unit, it reduces these issues as we ll as having many more benefits.The Graden Contour Sand Injection unit is not a 'miracle cure' but can play a very important role in a Turfgrass Management program.

     We appreciate your patience and understanding while we perform these important tasks. I can assure you that the long-term success greatly outweighs the short-term disruption of play while the greens heal from this process. We will soon have the greens back into the championship condition that our members and patrons deserve.

As always any questions, comments or concern is always appreciated.

We'll see you out there!