Five years ago at the GIS show Doug Petersan, GCS from Austin Golf Club, generously stopped by the PlanetAir booth and shared this insight.
“I don’t care if you’re a soil aerator. I could care less about that. What you’ve done is provide deep vertical cutting for my greens. The reason that’s so important is because I’ve discovered lateral growth up to 2” deep in my profile. You’ve developed a tool that allows me to cut that growth and prevent the reproduction of the daughter plant. This regenerates fine textured new tiller growth on the parent plant. You should see how fine textured my greens have become.”
Four years later I took Doug up on his invitation and visited him at the Austin Golf Club. Walking on his green was like walking on a felt pool table. Doug had been using his PlanetAir HD50 Tow with ¼” shatterknife tines and sand topdressing 7-9 times per year for the past 4 years and had discontinued core cultivation during this time.
Doug’s testing lab is very concerned about the lack of organic in the profile of his green. Doug’s response, “you let me worry about that.”
Case study – Twin Creeks Golf & Country Club
Phil Beal – Troon Golf International Superintendent of the Year, 2009
“We use PlanetAir every 3 to 4 weeks on our greens and it has become our most valued and critical piece of equipment in retaining our greens at the highest level.”
The decision was made to do more frequent aeration on the greens through the summer and autumn.We invested in the revolutionary PlanetAir slicing machine which was brought in at the beginning of December 2009.The first time we put it across our greens we could not believe the result, the patent planetary action of the aeration blade gave us minimal disruption to the surface and the green was back to normal after a mow. We kept ahead of the golfers and the application took less than 4 ½ hours.
It was decided that we would aerate the greens every 3 weeks in conjunction with a dusting program. After a couple of applications we noticed significant root growth, this was very encouraging as notoriously we struggle to keep our root density through the harsh summer months. We noticed a reduction in required irrigation which in turn allowed us to keep the surface dryer than normal and our disease pressure was reduced dramatically, not to mention the savings on our extremely limited water supply.
Through the autumn the turf density has improved and the health of the plant is as good as if we had completed our normal renovation. We look forward to increased plant health over the coming months which will put us into a strong position for the spring.
In conclusion, we have succeeded in all of our goals. The greens are strong and healthy and the surfaces are perfect, our revenue increased by $70,000 in April over previous years, our water usage has been reduced due to increased absorption and our costs are down thanks to decreased need for fungicides and infiltrants.
We use PlanetAir every 3 to 4 weeks on our greens and it has become our most valued and critical piece of equipment in retaining our greens at the highest level.
At Twin Creeks we decided to reduce our regular two renovations a year to one in the spring. We needed to keep the revenue and golf rounds to a maximum through the autumn to reach our financial targets. Our autumn renovation has always been critical to us after a long hot spring and summer and we needed to ensure that the health of the greens would not be compromised by cutting out the renovation process.