Lawn Aeration; What you need to know
You’ve made a pledge. A pledge to your home to be faithful in its maintenance and keenly attune to its wants and needs. Turn your attention to the health of your grass by considering good aeration practices.
So, you’ve identified that aeration would be beneficial to the overall well-being of your turf. Whether it be the continual heavy foot traffic of the area, or the devoted playtime trampling of the sprouts by your kiddos and pets that tipped you off- it is essential to alleviate the compaction of your soil to allow circulation of air, water and nutrients which is critical to the root system of your grass. Oftentimes newly constructed homes have extremely dense earth surrounding them due to hefty construction traffic which is a good indicator to the homeowner that it may be time to tine!
~ Aeration tines are used to puncture holes into the soil. ~
There are two standard methods that hold tried and true. Check them out below:
Plug aeration is geared towards a generously sized lawn requiring a low-tech mechanical device known as a plug aerator. You may buy or even rent one at your local home improvement store.
- 2 Types- Push along or an attachment to your mower
- Select a machine that removes soil plugs 2-3 inches deep; 0.5-0.75 inches in diameter
- Tool rotates hollow, steel spikes into your soil
- Spikes withdraw cylinders of dirt from soil
- Do not rake debris left in the wake of the aerator, they will settle with foot traffic and rain
Spike aeration is much more of a rigorous process due to its manual operation. Pricking holes through the surface of the soil is its aim at allowing water to penetrate more effectively, however, it does not reduce the presence of thatch and must be repeated on an annual basis. An added benefit to this method is the undeniable upper body workout that is created with this arduous undertaking! Can you say…”flex”?
- Recommended for yard sizes of ½ an acre or less
- Generally have a step platform which positions your body over the tool head
While many homeowners and DIY’ers take on this task for themselves, many employ the professional services of a trusted lawn care company. Regardless of your preference, aeration is an integral part of a regime that will revitalize your homestead- from the ground up!