The Why, When and How of Aerating Your Lawn

Written by Rohani Egbert
8 · 18 · 19
The Why, When and How of Aerating Your Lawn

I want my lawn to look like a carpet – this is what every lawn owner wishes for when laying down the turf. However, there are a lot of factors that go into making your piece of turf look good and continue looking good. While basic regular maintenance is important, there are some jobs that need to be done once or twice a year – and these are equally important. One such annual job is aerating your lawn. 

Why Aerating Your Lawn is Important?

Like every other living thing, grassroots also require water, nutrients, and air to grow and survive. However, grassroots enclosed by soil, which if compacted do not allow the passage of water, nutrients or air to reach the roots. Compaction of soil takes place due to people or pets constantly walking over the surface, running a lawn mower, and if you have clayey soil in your area. A lawn deprived of these basic necessities soon loses its luster, start thinning out and eventually dies. A period of high stress like low rainfall or intense heat further aggravates this problem. Aeration is the process of creating holes in the soil and just a single session can make all the difference to the health of your lawn.

When to Aerate 

Grass goes through different phases of growth in a year. From rapid growth to dormant periods, the timing will differ in different climatic locations. Aerating your lawn is best done when the grass is starting to come out of its dormant period and moving towards rapid growth. After all, a dormant root is not likely to take in extra water, nutrients or air. Check your local conditions to know the best time for aerating your lawn.

How to Aerate 

Most lawns will benefit if aeration is done at the right time and in the proper manner. Equipment for lawn aeration can be hired or purchased, depending on where you live. For those living in the Lone Star State, you can hire lawn aeration services from a Texas lawn aeration company to do the job professionally for you. Depending on the size of your lawn, you can hire or purchase aeration equipment – from small manual machines for small lawns to tractor driven machines for large ones. Aeration equipment are of three types:

Core aerators:

Also called plug aerators, these machines comprise of a hollow tube which when inserted into the soil, remove a plug of soil and deposit it on the surface. These machines are available in different sizes and width. 

Spike aerators:

These are simply spike attached to any surface – even shoes; that poke a hole into the soil. While fairly common, they can cause further compaction around the holes created.  

Slicing aerators:

Their rotating blades cut through the grass before entering the soil. Unlike core aerators, they do not pull out any soil from the ground but create passageways for water, nutrients, and air to reach the roots.

Aerate your lawn

While aerating your lawn while it is dry is good, it is easier for you and better for the grass if you aerate the lawn when the soil is moist. However, remember that aerating soggy or waterlogged soil is not recommended. Does your lawn need aeration? I think you should be able to work that out now.

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Rohani Egbert