July's aerification is very important in reducing thatch and ensuring our putting surface quality is maximized. Enjoy the frequently asked questions I have compiled below regarding this common practice.
"Why do we aerify when the golf course is in its best condition?"
The optimal growing season for bermuda grass is during 85+ degree air temps and 75+ degree soil temps. This commonly occurs in July, creating an ideal opportunity for recovery.
"Why is there so much sand on the greens weeks after aerification?"
Aerification results in an uneven surface. Sand provides us the opportunity to create a smoother putting surface by filling in the imperfections of the green.
"Why do we aerify July 11th & 12th, then do a dryject aerification July 25th?"
As our greens get older, the accumulation of organic matter becomes greater. The aerification process allows us to dilute the soil profile by removing existing material and replacing it with sand and soil amendments.
Although this is the main reason greens are aerified, it is also extremely important to allow oxygen to enter the root system. Instead of incorporating a second aerification, we have used the dryject as a supplement. We feel we can achieve the dilution we desire in our greens without further disrupting play with another aggressive aerification.
"When can we expect green speeds to be back to normal?"
Our gauge under normal conditions is 11 to 11.5. This is an optimal speed for our membership considering the undulation of the greens, pin location possibilities and the SCR experience. There are times during the year, such as July's aerification, where these speeds are unobtainable.
Due to the aggressiveness of the aerification process, it is necessary for us to raise mowing heights, fertilize and irrigate more; all of which causes abundant growth needed for the greens to recover. A gradual increase in speeds further promotes healthy greens.
Here is a timeline outlining this process:
Watch a Video on our Aerification Process...
Twitter is a great vehicle for sharing course updates. Please follow @springcrkranch to see the latest updates during the aerification process.