We all need AIR !
So what is that rather large piece of machinerey on the fairways at the moment, getting in the way of your Golf , punching holes in the fairways and leaving mess !
Well, its called a verti-drain. Its a great bit of kit that helps us get our fairways in the condition they are during the season
Grass needs air just like we do to make it healthy and flourish. The clay soil we have makes it essential to keep the soil profile aerated allowing vital air into it , this creates a better environment for root development, which in turn makes the plant more resistant to dry periods and wear from golf traffic.
The idea of the verti drain is to create these air pockets and relieve compaction from the continuous golf traffic.
It also helps with draining a surface water, by creating spaces amongst the soil to allow water to get through. When conditions are right we can get holes down 14 inches, but any depth of 5 inches or more is doing a job. The thickness of the tines range from 1/2 inch to 1 inch.
It takes roughly a whole working day to do one approach and fairway. If you see it on the course you will see its a slow process.
Conditions have to be right to be able to use the verti-drain, if the ground is too hard you cannot get the tines into the ground, too wet and you create a mud bath. Yes it does make a bit of mess as it disrupts the surface, but the benefits outweigh heavily this.
Here at Abridge Golf Course we ideally Verti-drain all the fairways, approaches and tees three times a year when possible. We also do the same process on the greens but use a smaller machine and thinner tines. More on that process another time.
Please watch and enjoy the video below and see this great bit of machinery in action.