Aeration isn’t the word a golfer likes to hear. That means no golf on smooth greens for about a month or so. Aeration is probably occurring at your golf course this week or last week. Aeration is important for all golf courses, as it decides how the course will perform for the winter months and new year. The little aeration holes on the course will be top dressed with sand so that water can evaporate from the soil, improve root growth, and drainage. I’ve heard mixed reviews whether superintendents like aeration or not. It mean work for two weeks straight as they basically ruin the course from its beautiful look. Aeration is applied to all part of the course from the driving range, tee boxes, fairways, rough, and greens. The size of the hole is 0.5-inch diameter which will create a plug of dirt that needs to disposed. Some of the plug are left on the course depending on where you play. When they aerate the greens, that is the worst part. Playing the course isn’t bad when the rough and fairway is aerated since the holes don’t effect your swing in any way. But when it comes to the greens it’s pretty much impossible to roll a smooth putt. The holes move the ball wayward making it not much fun to play. Chipping or hitting bunker shots don’t make it fun either. Bunkers shots come out as they usually would but when they hit the green they hit with a thud no rolling anywhere.
This time of the year is a great time to work on your swing for the next month or so. Aeration usually takes about a month or so to heal to its original form. I would say two months will give you a fully healed course and have you playing golf the way it was before aeration. They will also use this aeration week to get other chores done around the course. From what I know as far as private clubs around the bay area, they close down for two weeks to accomplish this task. I know for some public courses they will close nine holes down to aerate and leave the other nine holes open so golfers can play and they will be able to make money as well. The next week they will complete the other nine holes. They will usually keep the course open for play, but allow for the discount play rate. I’ve seen at Bayonet and Blackhorse golf course in Marina, CA they’ve given players a free round to play when it’s healed if they pay the full price to play after aeration. So you technically get two rounds for the price of one, with one being played on an aerated golf course. Overall aeration isn’t the best for a golfer, but it’s better in the long run. The golf course will most likely play more pure then it has a few months after aeration.