The main focus of attention of greens maintenance in recent years has been in and around the upper profile.
Hollow-Coring is of course the most normally recognised procedure for improving rootzones and for reducing organic matter. In recent years new techniques and alternative procedures have come to the forefront. Several years ago we concentrated solely on the upper profile, undertaking the Graden with Sand Injection. This procedure was carried out twice. Soil samples tested, reported that organic matters levels in the top 20mm were low, below 4%.
Attention was then afforded to moving maintenance into the lower profile following the success of the Graden to improve more on drainage and to link up with the surface. The next step was the Sand Injection procedure that was carried out last August. Like most Greens Maintenance techniques the best time to undertake work is when conditions are favourable for the best possible chance of success and quick recovery. Which is genuinely somewhere in August and September.
Having tackled the upper profile and then moved to lower in the profile, this years maintenance is focusing even deeper still. The Drill & Fill process is not a new technique, it was actually carried out here at Langley Park some 13-14 years ago. It is hoped that it will not take that long this time before it is carried out again. Linking all the different depths of maintenance is the target. What will determine the next type of maintenance is how well the greens and our next set of soil tests perfom.
DRILL & FILL
The Drill & Fill aerators provide improved solutions to: slow drainage; compaction; thatch;black layer and poor grass growth. These aerators will help us to improve our fine turf areas and help to keep them in play for longer, improving rootzone and the microbial environment.
The Drill & Fill advantages :
- Relieves compaction instantly
- Improves drainage rate
- Penetrates to a depth of 310mm
- Backfills instantly with soil amendment
- Accelerates infiltration rate
- Promotes deeper rooting
- deeper rooting means better sward performance and soil structure
The Drills remove soil allowing lateral movement within the rootzone and releasing compaction pressure. Drilling improves surface water infiltration and percolation, reducing the soggy, spongy conditions common in "push-up" and old clay-based greens. Deep holes encourage deep, strong roots and drilling depth is always consistent.
The Drill & Fill puts the soil amendment - sand mix directly into the rootzone. this holds open the drainage channel giving extended life to duct life. Langley Park is using a taylor-made soil exchange with a sand mix blended with zeolite amendments.