For the past several years, we have used Dryject aerification in conjunction with a conventional core aerification in the spring. Does Dryject create channels with lots of pore space? Yes. Does Dryject create minimal surface disturbance? Yes. So, to date, the only argument some might make, is that Dryject isn't doing enough to remove or dilute thatch near the surface.
|A conventional Dryject machine following core aerification.|
|Dryject typically gets the sand deep into the profile.|
Well, those who developed the Dryject nearly 20 years ago, were outside the box thinkers back then, and continue to be so today. The new question for them is, can Dryject actually reduce organic matter/thatch percentage in a putting green without pulling a plug?
This is where Laurel Creek steps into the picture. We are always happy to help with turfgrass research which could benefit the golf industry. In this case, we are located very close to Dryject's world headquarters, and didn't hesitate to let them use our nursery green for some real world testing of their prototype aerifier.
In order to sufficiently dilute organic matter, a good deal of sand needs to be added to the upper part of the soil profile. Therefore, the hole spacing needs to be much tighter than with a traditional Dryject. In the picture below, the hole spacing was a tight 2" X 1.5". This provides three times more holes per square foot than the Dryject spacing we have used. You will also notice, that unlike a typical Dryject hole, the sand is staying in just the upper few inches of the soil.
Below, Dryject President, John Paddock, is keeping an eye on the process, and perhaps contemplating the next change to the amazing machine. Measuring spacing, checking depth, and weighing sand was the order of the day.
Who knows, the day may actually come, when aerification isn't considered to be a four letter word by many golfers.