Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve had several inquiries about the large holes in the greens; a process called deep tine aerification. It comes as no surprise of course that a magnitude of worry rushes over the unsuspecting golfer as she approaches the first green and sees the atrocity that has been committed.
At first she holds nothing but contempt for the man on the tractor that seems suspiciously content with his actions and obtuse to the deprivation he is causing her. “What possible explanation could there be for this monstrous act!?” she mutters to herself.
It is true that smooth consistent putting is ruptured by this process; however, tempers are soon subdued with the advent of the roller. After a couple days of rolling a harbinger of smooth putting returns and faith is restored.
Deep tine aerification is by nature an invasive process but an important part of the maintenance program. Benefits of maintenance, particularly aerification, are not always evident at first but with a little inquiry and a splash of knowledge clarity can be found.
Here are some reasons why we at Candia Woods deep tine the greens in late fall:
Provides a deep channel for spring drainage
Fractures deep and surface compaction
Provides the opportunity for deep rooting in the spring
Returns air to the soil and helps facilitate oxygen and nitrogen cycles
Provides the opportunity to incorporate soil amendments and sand to lower soil levels
Helps stabilize freeze/thaw cycles through winter by contributing to water percolation
The balance between smooth consistent putting and necessary maintenance can be convoluted. Like many things in life, success is driven by sacrifice and I suspect it has always been that way. And so deep tine aerification will continue; helping to secure our prodigious greens, and along the way I have no doubt, there will be some grumbling golfers.