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What is Passive Capillary Drainage?

Passive Capillary (PC) Drainage is the only drainage system that can be pulled into the green at narrow three foot spacing for more efficient drainage. Layering occurs when a sandy root zone overlies a finer textured native soil, which is typical after years of topdressing. Layering is common in putting green soils. In these push-up greens the interface is often too close to the surface, resulting in “wet soil” problems for the turf. Even in USGA greens, excess water tends to perch where the sandy root zone interfaces the gravel layer. This perched water is held at a slight suction, so it is unable to enter conventional drainage systems. Passive Capillary Drainage works two ways. PC Drainage elements are placed at the bottom of a narrow sand curtain, which gives water trapped at the soil interface an exit.

“You take a look at this piece of one inch rope, and you think, now how in the heck is that going to work versus a piece of ADS pipe. But now, if anyone were to ask me about it, I would be PCD’s biggest proponent!”
Terry Kennelly,
The Concession Golf Club.
SubAir Systems Golf Course PC Drainage Infographic     SubAir Systems Golf Course PC Drainage Infographic

The unique element has an open stainless steel mesh core to remove large amounts of water quickly through gravity flow. It is made of highly conductive fiberglass, in which the spaces between the fibers match the pore sizes of a sandy root zone. The result is a system that drains fast with passive gravity drainage and wicks away excess soil moisture with capillary suction throughout the day. No pumps, motors, or energy using equipment is required. The PC Drainage system creates a very effective “hanging water column” suction effect that follows the natural contours of the green, is installed only where drainage problems exist, and helps improve turf health by providing better drainage in chronically wet soils.

Subair Systems Drainage     Subair Systems Drainage

Sand Topdressing Layer built up over time.

Narrow (3/8″) sand curtain at 3ft spacing drains water faster than sand channels more widely spaced.

One inch diameter fiberglass element fibers draw water through capillary action when water is perched below the element.

Stainless steel mesh core carries drainage water away with high efficiency during the first several hours following heavy rain.

PCD Rolled Seam Post Install
  • One Day Installation per Green
  • Minimal Turf Disruption
  • Back to Play in 24 Hours
  • Ideal for Older or Push Up Greens
  • Install Where You Need Drainage Improvement – greens, contours, fairways and any poorly draining areas
Our Clients
Singapore Island Country Club, Singapore
Laguna National Golf & Country Club, Singapore
Hong Kong Golf Club, Hong Kong
Causeway Bay Golf & Country Club, Hong Kong