You Aerate And Overseed During The Wrong Time Of The Year
The proper time to aerate is when new life has the greatest chance to grow in your region. You wouldnt want to aerate and overseed too early, before the last frost hits for example, and kill the seeds. You also wouldnt want to do it during the peak of a hot summer, when the harsh sun and temperature suppress new growth.;
For cool-season grasses, common in northern lawns, aerate early fall or spring. Warm-season grasses, common to southern lawns, grow best in the late spring or very early summer. Not sure which applies to you? Here in Pennsylvania, cool air and moist soil in the fall and spring make it the perfect time to lay fresh turf, helping to build greater resistance against disease, insects, and drought.
Does Aerating Really Help My Lawn
By;;|;;Submitted On April 10, 2012
Every spring lawn care companies come to your door offering to poke holes all through your lawn, leaving thousands of small, round, clods of dirt. Does aerating really help a lawn grow better and if so, why? Also, what is the best approach to lawn aeration and what do you need to do before and after aeration is complete?
Does Aerating Really Help My Lawn?
The answer is “yes”, if done properly. We will first talk about why aerating is beneficial, and then we will discuss how you can maximize the benefits of aeration.
Why Aerate My Lawn?
First, the primary reason to aerate your lawn is to promote the health of the soil under your lawn. A healthy lawn needs healthy soil underneath to supply adequate water and nutrients. Clay or sandy soils that tend to be common in Utah tends to compact and limit the movement of these nutrients, or they allow them to wash right though. Aerating loosens the soil and allows new nutrients to enter the soil. High traffic areas that are prone to compacting are greatly benefitted by these air pockets, which allow the ground to breath and allows the nutrients to spread evenly through the soil.
How to Aerate Properly?
When to Aerate?
Aerate your lawn at least once or twice a year for a stronger, healthier lawn. Aerating is most beneficial when done in spring or fall.
What to do Before & After Aerating?
Can You Amend Clay Soil In Existing Lawns
Adding compost, gypsum, and pine bark can help amend clay soil before establishing a lawn, but you might want to use other options to break down and loosen clay soil in an existing lawn.
The best way to amend clay soil in an existing lawn is by aerating and dethatching. A plug aerator can remove plugs of soil to loosen up soil and create spaces for air, water and nutrient penetration in the soil.
Allowing thatch buldup on a lawn with clay soil can worsen it because the layer of dead matter can worsen compaction and aeration problems. Therefore, dethatching is a great way to help grass thrive well on lawns built on clay soils.
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Does Aeration And Overseeding Work Before And After Pics That Will Blow Your Mind
If youre looking at a thinned out or even bare yard every day, youre probably growing frustratedor maybe even a little embarrassed about how it looks compared to everyone elses yards.
You know you need a solution but you want to make a good choice that will give you your desired results without breaking the bank.
While there are a lot of lawn care services that will help give you a lush, green lawn, one of the most important, and effective, services you can have done for your lawn is to have it aerated and overseeded.
These two services can make a world of difference when your lawn has thinned out areas or bare spots.
What Exactly Is Lawn Aeration
Lawn aeration is the process of puncturing the soil with small holes that aid vital elements, such as air and water, to enter the grassroots. This process helps the roots to grow deeply, which in turn produces a stronger and livelier lawn.
The main purpose of lawn aeration is to provide air and breathability to your lawn and the soil underneath it.
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How Often Should I Aerate
How often you aerate your lawn depends on a few factors. Our turf care experts at Timberline recommend once annually, during fall,; for the typical lawn. If your lawn is walked on, mowed, or used very often, this will cause additional compaction.;;Clay soil types tend to compact more than other soils which could increase the need for aeration. ;
High use lawns may require twice per year aeration, once in spring and once in fall, to keep them healthy and beautiful. However, the opposite is also true. If your lawn is lush, beautiful, and almost never has foot traffic, aerating every couple of years may be the best fit. Its important to remember, aerating to often can cause way more harm than good for your lawn. If youre unsure how often to aerate or what soil type you have, a turf care expert will assist you in determining your lawn care needs.
Allow Soil Plugs To Break Down Naturally
After you use a core aerator, plugs of soil will be scattered across your yard. While it may be tempting to take some measures to clean up your yard, the best course of action is to allow soil plugs to dry and break down over time.
Mowing and regular lawn use, as well as precipitation, will gradually destroy soil plugs. This allows air and nutrients to mix with the soil, and allows water and fertilizer to easily enter the holes left by core aeration.
Best for: All lawns. Soil plugs left by an aeration machine should always be allowed to break down over time.
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How Often Should You Aerate A Lawn In Northern Virginia
Generally, you should aerate your lawn annually, although this depends on the age and condition of your lawn and your soil type. For example, a newly installed lawn or a lawn growing in naturally well-drained, organic soil may not compact as quickly as other soil types, and thatch may not be an issue. On the other hand, clay soils and playing fields tend to compact quickly and will benefit greatly from more frequent core aeration.
PRO TIP: Aerating your lawn too much can damage your grass, so dont overdo it. If youre aerating regularly but still have problems with the health of your grass, ask a turf professional for an evaluation. You might have a larger issue with drainage, which is something we can help remedy.
Why Aerating Helps The Lawn
Grass is just like any other plant. The roots are what needs air, water and nutrients to grow thick, lush grass. The part you see is the attractive part but most of the work is done below ground. All the nutrition is soaked up by the roots,not the green grass you see above ground. When the surface becomes compacted, it inhibits the flow of essential nutrients down to the roots. Even a thin layer of compaction just 1/4 inch thick can make a big difference in terms of overall lawn heath. Aeration creates holes into the soil that act like tunnels delivering nutrients right to the roots where theyre actually needed.
If nutrients cant get to the roots, lawn grass can become unhealthy in stressful times such as heat or low rainfall. That healthy lush color and thickness you want will be very difficult to obtain if the grass cant be properly nourished. Grasses can gradually thin, yellow and eventually die out from lack of the oxygen, water and nutrients that cant get to the roots because theyre trapped on the surface by compaction. Even a single aeration can solve the problem bringing your lawn back to life.
Many homeowners who dont aerate their lawns try using strong fertilizers instead. This is generally a mistake and rarely needed. In most cases all a sick lawn needs is aeration so the nutrients can actually get to the grass. Lots of fertilizer isnt the answer because it will have trouble penetrating the compaction layer too.
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When Should I Aerate My Lawn
Aeration is an important part of maintaining a healthy lawn and allowing it to be porous enough for oxygen, water and nutrients to penetrate down to the root zone.
Summer, autumn, winter and spring are all times when aeration can occur to differing degrees.
Aeration also helps prevent the build-up of thatching and encourages the deep rooting of your lawn therefore producing a strong more vigorous grass.
Should I be aerating my lawn?
It is easy to assess whether your lawn needs aerating the following points will help you make the decision:
Your lawn needs aerating if:
- It your lawn gets heavy use from children and pets running around the yard.
- During prolonged dry conditions and drought.
- It was established as part of a new home as often the topsoil of new lawn is stripped or buried, and the grass established within the subsoil has been compacted by construction traffic.
- It dries out very easily and has a spongy feel underfoot. This often is because your lawn has an extensive thatch problem. If the layer of thatch is greater than 1.5cm then aeration is recommended.
- If your lawn was newly established, it may have soil layering which is when finer textured soil which comes with the new lawn is layered over the existing coarser soil. This laying can disrupt airflow and drainage to the newly developed roots.
When Lawns Need Aeration
It may not seem your lawn could get compacted, but it happens easier than you may think. Vehicles or small equipment driven on lawns are more obvious offenders, but even outdoor entertaining or yard play by kids and pets;can leave all or part of your lawn compacted. If you live where heavy clay soil is the norm, annual aeration is probably needed to keep your lawn from becoming thin and weak.
Dethatching and aerating are two different tasks, but they often go hand in hand. Thatch is the layer of decomposing organic matter that forms right at the lawn surface, between soil and grass. When thatch gets more than 1/2 inch thick, it works like compaction to prevent the flow of air, water and nutrients grasses need. Aggressive spreading grasses, such as Kentucky bluegrassin northern lawns and Bermudagrass;down south, form more thatch than many other grass types. Aeration helps penetrate and reduce thatch buildup or prep it for removal through dethatching.
If your grass often looks stressed and your soil is hard to the touch or rainwater puddles up where it used to be absorbed, you may have compaction problems. Confirm your suspicions with a simple “screwdriver test.” Take a regular screwdriver and stick it into your lawn’s soil by hand. It should slide in fairly easily. If you meet resistance, your soil is compacted, and aeration can help.
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When Is The Best Time To Aerate Your Lawn
Regardless of where you live and what type of turf grass youre working with, aeration can help your lawn be healthier and more beautiful. The trick is knowing when its best to aerate, what equipment to use, and what else you can do to encourage the vigor of your grass. Additionally, aerating can also assist in limiting weeds ability to gain a foothold in the lawn.
According to Josh Friell, Ph. D, of The Toro Companys Center for Advanced Turf Technology, aeration introduces temporary stress to the turf. Recovery time is closely linked to growing conditions and annual growth cycles. As a result, its important to keep those considerations in mind when determining an annual aerification plan.
Aeration Is One Of The Most Neglected But Most Critical Tasks
Aeration and overseeding has been called the secret to the best lawn for a reasonbecause a lot of people simply dont realize just how important it is.;
Its not really a secret service by any means. Its right on our website. But we still find that many customers believe it can be skipped. Unfortunately, youre just not going to get the fantastic results that you might be looking for if you neglect this critical task.
What you may not realize is that regular aerating and seeding is what makes professional natural sports turf look so amazing.;
If you say that you want a professional-looking lawn but you do not choose this service, you simply arent going to get the same high-quality results.
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You Fight Weeds Too Early
Weed control can work wonders keeping invasive growth at bay on a healthy turf, but chemicals and herbicides can harm seedings roots and fresh blades. Even organic and natural solutions can cause stress on the young plants, so its often best to wait until your grass is strong before laying down any weed control substances. We advise waiting until youve mowed your new grass four to five times before tackling any emerging weeds.
Aeration Basics: What Why How
Compacted soils cause a lot of damage to your lawn and garden. This is what youll need to know about soil aeration to keep your lawn green and your gardens blooming:
Summer is almost here, which means its time to start preparing your lawn and garden ready some serious outdoor fun. Whether your kids love playing on the grass or you simply enjoy sitting on the deck with friends and family, youll probably want your yard to look its absolute best. By practicing proper aeration methods, you can begin the process of beautifying your plants.
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Why Should You Aerate Your Lawn
It is important to aerate your lawn because it helps to alleviate soil compaction. When the soils are compacted, they have a dense particle population, and this prevents the air, nutrients, and water in the soil from properly circulating. Excess lawn thatch, which is a layer of living and dead turfgrass tissue that has amassed on a lawn surrounding the base of the grass, can also starve the roots from the vital elements.
Are There Signals Indicating That I Should Aerate My Lawn
This is a very good question that will help you to take action before things get worse.
Generally, there are things that increase the likelihood of drainage problems for your lawn. Thus, if you can handle them as early as possible, it will save you a lot of headaches and frustrations in the future.
These are some of the signals to alert you to consider aerating your lawn:
- If there is heavy traffic on your lawn. For example, if it serves as a playground or people often pass through it, you should consider aerating it because of the likelihood of soil compaction.
- If you notice that your lawn takes time to absorb water into the ground, you have to aerate it before it begins to develop major drainage problems.
- If your lawn was developed as part of a recently built home, you might need to aerate it. In most cases, the topsoil of such a lawn is compacted due to construction traffic, thus making it difficult for air, nutrients, and water to penetrate through.
- I highly recommend that you aerate your lawn if your home is newly built to avoid drainage problems.
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What Is Lawn Aeration And Why Should You Aerate
Over time, grass and soil can become compressed and compacted. This creates thatch, which is a thin layer of dead and living grass roots, stems and shoots that forms between the soil and the grass in your lawn. ;Some of this organic matter, including the grass stems and roots, decays slowly, so thatch can build up.
As the thatch becomes thicker, it prevents air, water and fertilizer from reaching the roots of the grass. This causes your lawn to thin out and die.;
Aeration is the practice of making holes in your lawn to loosen the soil underneath. This lets oxygen, water and important nutrients reach the roots, so your grass can become lush, green and healthy.;
Aeration can also help improve a lawn growing in poor soil or heavy clay.;
Is It Hard Work To Aerate With A Fork
Honestly, aerating your lawn with a fork can be extremely hard work.
If you are not in good shape I would not recommend doing this method of lawn aeration.
So you have a small lawn that is maybe only 6-8 square meters then yeah its fine, get a pitchfork and get stuck into aerating your lawn. If you have a large lawn as I do and you are not in good shape like me, I definitely would not recommend using a fork for lawn aeration.
I have used the fork technique many times when I used to have a small lawn but now I have a rather large lawn and I did attempt to aerate it with a fork for the first time when I moved and I promised myself, never again.
I remember my thoughts after I had aerated a couple of meters and they were thoughts of pure dread at how much effort it was taking to slowly cover my rather large lawn in holes.
The effort it took was incredible and it really did use every ounce of energy I could muster to complete the task but that was just the beginning.
The days after I had exhausted myself by aerating my massive lawn with a fork was where the real pain occurred.
After aerating my lawn every muscle in my body ached for days and even muscles I never knew existed ached, also, my knees ached which must have been from stamping the fork in the ground, my back and neck also ached for days.
This is why I now recommend using a fork to aerate your lawn only if you have a small lawn and never if you have a large lawn.
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