We aerate to improve, not annoy.
Putting greens receive more traffic than any other playing surface. The aeration process helps relieve the compaction caused by all that traffic. It also helps create a firm, smooth putting surface by controlling thatch and promoting healthy turf roots.
Scratch the thatch.
Thatch is a layer of old plant material that accumulates at the soil surface. If thatch on putting greens is not diluted by aeration and topdressing, it will act like a sponge, holding water near the surface. Excessive thatch creates soft playing conditions, inconsistent green speeds and increases the risk of disease.
It’s not as bad as you think.
It may seem like there are more holes than grass on the putting greens right after they’ve been aerated, but this is an illusion. Typically, aeration affects less than 10 percent of a putting surface.
Timing Is Everything.
Do you ever wonder why aeration is commonly performed when putting greens are playing their best? Aerating when grass is healthy and actively growing minimizes damage and allows for a quick return to optimal playing conditions. Aerating at other times may be more convenient for the golf schedule, but it lengthens recovery times, increases the risk of an invasion of weeds and could cause lasting damage.
Sand is part of the plan.
A heavy application of topdressing following aeration may appear to make putting greens less playable. However, filling aeration holes with sand actually helps create a smoother surface. Sand also creates channels for water and air movement, dilutes thatch and helps putting greens recover from aeration more quickly.
Thank you for your understanding!