What is Lawn Aeration and Why It is Overlooked
The easiest and most overlooked way to create and maintaining a beautiful lawn is not a secret, it’s aeration. The benefits are so great that it should be a normal part of your yearly routine. Unfortunately, the problem for most homeowners is that it is not justifiable to own a big bulky machine, when you only use it once or twice a year. Also some find that renting one and trying to control it once on your lawn can be more trouble than what it’s worth.
Your grass gets compacted by foot traffic or even rain and other elements naturally every year. When it gets compacted it loses its ability to breath and the grassroots have no room to grow, creating weak grass plants inviting problems. Runoff and loss of water are also problems with compacted soil since the water has no chance to penetrate.
Aerating your lawn is the process of opening airways into the soil by punching holes into the lawn and pulling up cores of soil by use of a special machine. The benefits are much greater when you use a core aerator machine. Then when you pull out the plugs the grass roots can get air, moisture and more room to stretch out and grow stronger roots to help resist drought, pests and weeds.
The plugs that are pulled out are best left on the surface to return back to the soil since they are full of nitrogen and other beneficial material. It may take a day or two for them to dissolve and the process can be sped up by watering them or using the back of a rake to break them down.
This is also a great time to put down new seed, fertilizer and compost since it will get into the holes and go right to the roots to give your lawn the best chance to grow thick, which also crowds out weeds.