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Dodge's Dirt

February 2011

I am probably not alone when I say that the winter gets a little long on the golf course though as I write this article I can feel a little bit of spring in the air. Snow is actually melting at this time. That being said, we are hoping for the best this spring and that the golf course gets through the winter with minimal injury.

We have been receiving a few calls this year in regards to greens aerification this year. The plan is to aerify greens this year on May 17th weather permitting. If the weather does not cooperate then we will perform the work on May 24th. We have decided to aerify a few weeks earlier than usual this season in order to better work around our players.

Recovery time depends greatly on the weather conditions at the time that we aerify. Warmer temperatures in the spring will make for a quicker recovery. Cooler temperatures will delay recovery. It is as simple as that. Rest assured that we will do everything in our power to make the process as painless as possible for everyone. I have listed below a few interesting facts about aerification:

  • Aerification is a short-term disruption that has long-term benefits for golf courses.
  • For grass to grow at 3/16-inch, they need to have deep, healthy roots. Good roots demand oxygen.
  • Aerification is a mechanical process that creates more air space in the soil and promotes deeper rooting, thus helping the grass plants stay healthy.
  • In most cases, aerification involves removing 1/2-inch cores. The spaces are then filled with sand "topdressing" that helps the soil retain air space and makes it easier for roots to grow downward.
  • Other aerification techniques use machines with "tines" or knives that simply poke holes through the soil profile. A photographic example of the process is shown below:

Vince 27    Vince 28

                                               Pulling Cores                                                                                                            Removing Cores                                                

Vince 29  Vince 30

                                     Topdressing Heavily                                                                                                    Dragging in Sand                                     

Vince 31  Vince 32

                                Rolling to True Surface                                                                                                       Finished Product                               

Sincerely,

Vincent Dodge

                                                              

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