Picking The Wrong Time Of Year
We have already covered the best time of the year to aerate and overseed your lawn, but some people will still do this project at the wrong time of year and be disappointed with the results.
It can be hard to wait when youre ready to tackle a big lawn renovation, but dont waste your time and investment because you were impatient. Your lawn isnt going anywhere.
Harsh winters and hot summers will cause problems for seed growth if you overseed later than you should in the fall or spring.
Furthermore, you should avoid aerating soil when it is too dry because it will be harder for the machine to break through and the plugs wont come out of the tines cleanly.
Watering Your Lawn After Aeration
For the best results, you will have to follow a watering regimen that varies over time.
During the first two weeks after aeration, you should water the lawn daily but very lightly. Do not water beyond a 60mm depth, just enough to keep the soil moist without washing away the grass seed.
At three weeks, you can water the lawn 3-4 days a week, but you must increase the depth to about 130mm. This will keep the soil moist and not dislodge any newly established roots. You can also mow the lawn if the grass is taller than three inches.
After a month, you should water the lawn even less often. However, make sure to water to a depth of 3 inches. Avoid watering on, or immediately after a rainy day.
After a month and a half, you can water your lawn frequently at a depth of about 2 inches or so. Also, avoid watering on rainy days. You can water in this fashion until you are ready to aerate the lawn again.
How Often Should You Aerate Your Lawn Get The Perfect Grass
When I was a kid I always dreamt of one day owning the perfect lawn.
Something that looked like a soccer pitch, golf green, or the center court at Wimbledon.
But its not an easy task and having a lawn of this caliber takes a lot of work, patience, time, and dedication.
Even once youve learned how to level your yard, or managed to remove all the weeds in your lawn, and/or youve given it a great trim with the right lawnmower, theres still plenty to be done before you can make your neighbors as green as you want your grass to be.
And one of the most important things you need to do is to let it breathe.
But how often should you aerate your lawn? What tools do you need? What exactly is aeration, and how do you do it?
Read on to discover the who, what, why, where, and when of aerating your lawn, and take your garden game to the next level.
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. If you shop through the links on YardThyme, we may earn an affiliate’s commission from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you. For more information, read full disclosure here.
Recommended Reading: Corn Speedwell Killer
Late Summer Lawn Care
Hot, dry summer weather can be tough on Kentucky bluegrass and other cool-season grasses. Good cultural practices in late summer can help revive stressed lawns. Important late summer cultural practices include mowing, overseeding, aeration, and fertilization.
In September, lower the mowing height from 3.0 to 3.5 inches to 2.5 to 3 inches. Continue to mow the lawn until the grass stops growing in late October/early November. When mowing the lawn, never remove more than of the total leaf area at any one time.
Mid-August through mid-September is the best time to renovate a thin lawn. Sowing grass seed in late summer has several advantages over spring seeding. Cool-season grass seeds germinate quickly in the warm soils of late summer. Once the grass germinates, the warm days and cool nights of fall promote rapid turf growth. Also, there will be less competition from weeds as few weed seeds germinate in late summer and fall.
To reduce the competition from the established turfgrass, mow the lawn at a height of 1½ to 2 inches. Successful overseeding requires good seed-to-soil contact. Core aerators, vertical mowers, and slit seeders can be used to insure good seed-to-soil contact.
Early September is the best time to aerate lawns in Iowa. Aeration relieves soil compaction, improves water and nutrient movement in the soil, and prevents thatch accumulation.
How Do I Ensure The Best Results
The best results for lawn aeration are achieved through proper pre-service preparation and post-service care.
For pre-service preparation, you should:
- Consider marking underground sprinkler heads or invisible fences with flags or stakes
- Remove personal property & debris such as leaves from the lawn
- Mow and lightly water your lawn 24 hours before your specialist is scheduled to perform your service
For post-service care, you should:
- Regularly water your lawn instead of relying on rainfall
- Limit traffic on your lawn to allow new seeds to germinate
- Mow as usual until germination begins, then wait 10 days for seeds to establish before you resume mowing
Recommended Reading: How Much Peat Moss For Lawn
Choosing The Wrong Equipment
In many ways, your results will only be as good as the equipment you use. One common example is attempting to avoid buying or renting an aeration machine to prepare your lawn.
Cheap alternatives include using a pitchfork or buying cleats with spikes on the bottom of them .
Neither of these options does the job well, and could even make the soil worse by compacting your further.
Do yourself a favor and rent a core aerator for 4 hours or for a day. Its less than $100 and its money well spent.
The Best Time To Overseed Grass
Overseeding means planting new grass to fill in any bare orworn patches. This is helpful for having a gorgeous lawn that looks thick andhealthy all year long. The best time to overseed depends on two factors: whereyou live and what kind of grass you prefer.
Many homeowners in northern states choose cool-seasongrasses, and southern areas often select warm-season grasses. Each type ofgrass has distinctive growth patterns and needs, so make sure to speak with ourlawn professionals if youre not sure what variety to choose. Here are theoptimal overseeding times for several locations and grass types:
- PacificNorthwest : Plant new grasses about six weeks beforethe first projected snowfall. These are generally cool-season grasses.
- SouthwestU.S. : Early spring is the best time foroverseeding in these areas.
- Southernstates : April, May and June are good times tooverseed in this huge area. The best time may vary each year depending on soiltemperatures. You want warm-season grass to have a cozy environment togerminate in.
- Northeaststates : Due to the cold temperatures prevalent in theseareas, its best to start planting grass seeds in August or September to givethem some time to grow before winter hits.
- MidwestU.S. : Weather conditions vary quite abit depending on how far north you live, but a safe bet is to overseed lawns bythe end of August or early September at the latest.
You May Like: How To Get Rid Of Violets In Yard
Final Touches On Aerating Before During And After Rain
It is perfectly fine to aerate in dry or wet conditions and before, during, or after rainfall. It is important to make sure however that the accumulations stay in the moderate to low range to protect root systems and keep down weed growth.
Aeration is a major part of lawn care, even though it is only recommended once to twice per year. Do it and dont let a little rain stand in your way.
To read more on this and other subjects in landscaping, see my other articles
How Can I Do It
If you have a small lawn you can easily carry out this process with a garden fork. The key thing is to do lots of holes and try to make sure they are as deep as possible we recommend at least 125mm deep. If you are going to aerate with a machine then ideally use the services of a company such as Lawntech who will provide the service at a cost effective price, using the best professional machinery.
Read Also: How To Estimate Lawn Mowing Jobs
You Aerate And Overseed During Dry Conditions
Aerating is easy on your turf, and you, when your soil is slightly moist. Overly dry and compact soil is harder to penetrate and requires more manual effort to push the machinery. Especially during times of drought when you grass is already stressed, its best to wait until the day after a good rainfall before aerating.
How Often To Aerate A Lawn
The degree of use of your lawn and the soil type largely determine how frequently you should aerate your lawn. Lawns that get heavy foot traffic and have heavy, clay soils need to be aerated twice per year. On the other hand, lawns subject to little foot traffic and that have well-drained soil should be aerated once per year.
You May Like: When Should You Aerate Your Lawn In Georgia
Choosing The Right Type Of Aeration
If you live in Ann Arbor MI, you should be aerating your lawn at least once a year. Whether you choose a spike aerator or a plug aerator, youll help your grass have healthier roots. While the middle of the Summer isnt the best time to aerate, depending on your grass, early or late Summer is the ideal time.
Does Spike Aeration Work
Does spike aeration work? Spike aeration works but provides short-term results because when you push the aerator into the soil, it pushes soil down and to the sides instead of removing the thick thatch that is causing compaction. With time, the soil will readjust and close the small holes you made in the ground.
Don’t Miss: What Is The Best Cordless Lawn Edger
Help Your Lawn Recover From Summer Stresses Aerate And Over
Jeremy Biros – 2 years ago
Summer is the most difficult time of year for your cool-season lawn. Long periods of extreme heat and severe drought add excessive stress to your lawn. Some areas of your lawn may shut down and go dormant, while others may even die off. A lawn stressed by heat and drought will allow broadleaf weeds and crabgrass to move in. Disease takes over the more susceptible areas of the lawn. Pests such as chinch bugs and grubs attack and destroy your beautiful turf.
The Best Time To Aerate Your Lawn Is Based On 3 Conditions:
Aeration can take place at any time of the year, but the best time is usually in the spring/early summer or fall.
The general recommendation is to core aerate when there is the most root growth. For warm-season grasses: Bermuda, St. Augustine, Centipede, Zoysia, it is in May and June when these grasses are coming out of dormancy. Cool-season grasses: bluegrass, ryegrass and the fescues, receive the most benefits when the lawn is aerated in the fall.
Read Also: Changing Oil In Craftsman Lawn Mower
What Is The Best Month To Aerate Your Lawn
Hereof, is it too early to aerate my lawn?
For spring aerating, the best time to aerate your lawn in Ohio is early to mid March. If you see the dandelions popping up in your lawn, it is too late to aerate. If you miss spring aeration, fall is another great time to aerate. Fall aeration should take place mid to late October after temperatures have cooled down.
Secondly, what is the best way to aerate your lawn? Before You AeratePeiffer says the best aerating machines are those with hollow, metal tines that penetrate the ground and pull plugs of soil from the lawn. You can help the tines penetrate deeper by watering your lawn one to two days prior to areating. Apply about an inch of water to the grass.
Subsequently, one may also ask, is it good to aerate your lawn in the summer?
This means that aeration should occur between late spring and through the summer. Anytime during this season will help your lawn, as long as it is not during heat waves or drought. Aerating during a heat wave or drought can do more harm than good because it can increase water evaporation.
How often should a lawn be aerated?
As for frequency, Friell said aeration should be performed at least once per year on most lawns, while twice annually is best for lawns with compacted soil or soil with high clay content.
What To Expect From Trugreen Lawn Aeration
In addition to a healthy, lush lawn, here are four things to expect from your TruGreen lawn aeration service:
1. Your lawn specialist will remove small plugs of turf, thatch and soil from your lawn.
2. For cool season grasses, your lawn could also benefit from overseeding since aeration creates optimal conditions for seed development and growth.
3. In 1-2 weeks, the plugs break down, feeding nutrients back to your lawns roots.
4. You may begin to see new white roots and seedlings growing in the aerated holes.
You May Like: How To Clean Lawn Mower Carburetor
Why Is Aeration Important
Whether your lawn is perfectly healthy or youre experiencing some of the problems listed below, aeration can help to keep your grass green and lush and improve its health for years to come. By aerating , were allowing essential nutrients, water, and airflow to get to the roots of your turf.
This, in turn, helps beneficial microorganisms thrive in the root zone. Theyll support healthy growth, and at the same time, tackle existing thatch and improve soil quality. This goes hand-in-hand with overseeding as it also creates optimal conditions for new grass growthwhich, in turn, can help crowd out weeds.
Developing and sticking to an aeration schedule is an important part of turf management as a whole. If youve never done it before, or have any questions about your lawn, dont hesitate to get in touch.
How To Aerate Your Yard
If you’re convinced that your lawn is in need of aeration, here are some lawn care tips on how to do it:
- Before you get started, make sure the soil is moist enough. There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to aerate soil that is bone dry. Aerating the day after a rain shower or watering your lawn the day before is advised.
- Most aeration machines cover only a small percentage of soil surface per pass, so make multiple passes over the most compacted areas. Save resources by leaving unaffected areas alone
- The excavated soil plugs should be allowed to dry and then broken up to give your lawn a uniform, clean appearance. Break them up by running them over with a lawn mower or pounding them with the back of a rake.
- An aeration myth is that if you apply a pre-emergent herbicide on your lawn in the spring, aerating your lawn will destroy the herbicide “barrier.” This is not true research shows that aeration will not affect crabgrass control or weed prevention.
- After aerating, it’s important to continue basic lawn care practices such as proper fertilizing, mowing and watering.
Aeration is a beneficial practice toward achieving a beautiful lawn, but most people don’t realize it or understand the process. If your lawn is a candidate, make it an integral part of your lawn care regime. Your lawn will thank you for letting it breathe again.
Recommended Reading: Core Aerator Rental Lowes
How Often Should I Aerate The Lawn
If you aerate the lawn too often, you will damage the grass and the delicate balance of dormancy and growth. If you dont aerate the lawn often enough, your grass will suffocate and the soil wont support growth. A professional landscaper will take several aspects into consideration before they plan an aeration schedule for the lawn. As mentioned before, they consider the type of grass on your lawn. They also consider the type of soil because different kinds of soil react differently to weather conditions.
- Clay Soil Clay soil is sticky and wet. It can compact easily and become very hard when it dries down. This soil should be aerated once a year at the very least. You can aerate is more often if you notice the soil becoming hard and compacted a few months after the previous aeration.
- Sandy Soil Sandy and granular soil isnt sticky and doesnt retain water as easily as clay soil does. This type of soil wont compact easily so you can aerate it once a year or in alternating years. You still have to aerate it because eventually the pressure and gravity causes compaction in sandy soil as well.
You might also need to aerate the lawn more often if you live in acrid climates or experience extremely cold winters. Experts usually recommend aeration twice a year in such conditions.
Can You Aerate In The Summer A Complete Guide
Maintaining a lawn is not an easy task. There are a lot of things that need to be taken care of from time to time. From mowing the lawn to aerating the lawn, these are some tasks that require attention.
One thing for sure is that lawns are highly-used in almost all seasons. People walk on the grass, pets run around, barbeques and bonfires are held, and sprinklers sprinkle water on the grass regularly. All this leads to soil compaction. This means the soil gets compact and lowers the oxygen and water level that passes through the soil. This can make the lawn inappropriate for growing grass and will ruin its lusciousness.
So what is the best way to make the lawn more luscious and also remove soil compaction? Lawn aeration is the answer to this question.
Also Check: How To Get Rid Of Johnson Grass