Most problems concerning turf on sports fields, golf course greens, tee boxes, or athletic playing surfaces can generally be attributed to soil compaction in one way or another. When the spaces between the particles of soil or sand become restricted, the paths for air, water, and nutrients are greatly affected. All plant cells need oxygen to live. Without oxygen, plants cannot perform aerobic respiration (respiration is the process of breaking down food to get energy). The cells in the green parts of the plant (the part of the plant you can see on the surface), where photosynthesis is taking place, get all the oxygen they need from the oxygen produced by photosynthesis. The trick is getting oxygen to the cells down in the roots, where there is no photosynthesis occurring.
In most plants, cells get their oxygen from air in the pore spaces between dirt particles in the soil. When pore space shrinks, there is less air and moisture in the soil, a condition that negatively influences root growth, nutrient uptake, and in reality, all phases of turf growth. This ultimately creates what is called a "Black Layer." This “Black Layer” is a compacted anaerobic layer of soil. It inhibits root growth and causes the soil to become stagnant. This layer restricts the natural air channels and decreases porosity. When porosity is altered (due to compaction) you still need air to keep the structure of the soil regulating the movement of water, nutrients, and developing roots. Air is a constant need for the plant to survive and to maintain the soil structure to provide for the healthy processes to take place.
Compaction isn't due to just foot traffic and the everyday use of machinery alone, it also occurs as a result of nature itself. Over a short period of time, the soil combines with water, which causes it to tightly fit together. In addition, without good aeration penetration into the soil below the black layer, the roots will not have the oxygen molecules to attach that are necessary in order for them to absorb moisture and healthy nutrients. If roots do not have oxygen, detrimental microbial activity will occur.
Preforming Soil CPR
The Air2G2 324 uses three probes to perform Soil CPR. By laterally injecting pressurized air up to 12-inches beneath the surface of the soil, in a diameter of up to 9 feet, the Air2G2 324 fractures compacted layers formed by daily wear and tear, enables airflow without surface disruption or without causing root damage. The increased porosity of the soil enables the roots to grow deeper and reach the latent nutrients, which may decrease the amount of fertilizer necessary for healthy turf. The increased positive microbial activity in the soil also alleviates bacteria and fungus in the root zone. Increased root depth enhances heat and drought stress tolerance. Therefore, the amount of water used to irrigate the turf may also be reduced.
Although this process may allow turf managers to decrease their budget concerning fertilizer, fungicide and irrigation, the most innovative aspect of Air2G2 technology is it causes little to no surface disruption or root damage. Once the operator has completed aerifying the turf, it is immediately ready for play. This is the biggest financial benefit of using the Air2G2 324, as facilities need not close or reschedule use of athletic fields or golf courses. You truly can aerify today and play today.