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Aeration is the naturally occurring process of air exchange between the soil and
atmosphere. In lawn care, it is the mechanical process of removing small plugs
of thatch and soil from the lawn to improve the soil aeration. Core Aeration
improves a lawns health and vigor and reduces maintenance.
In most new lawns, the natural soil has been disturbed some time during
the building process. The fertile topsoil has been mixed with undesirable
subsoil and then compacted through traffic. These lawns benefit by mechanical
aeration which improves root growth, enhances fertilizer and water usage through
better absorption, and speeds up thatch breakdown by incorporating soil with the
thatch. Aeration also reduces soil compaction, boosts heat and drought tolerance
and thus promotes a healthy lawn.
Both spring and fall are ideal times to aerate, twice a year, sometime
between April and May and late summer to early fall. Aeration timed with late
season fertilization enriches root growth and spring "greening." Avoid
aerating when grasses are dormant or "greening" so as to not encourage
spring weeds. Wait until you have
mowed for the first time, then aerate, and water immediately. Your lawn will be
covered with small plugs pulled from the soil that will disappear in a week or
so. After 7-10 days the plug holes will be filled with white growing roots, a
sign that the grass is responding to the additional oxygen, moisture and
fertilizer from the process of aeration.
Don't expect miracles from a single aeration but lawns that receive
this care will be healthier, more vigorous, much easier to maintain, more
drought tolerant and have fewer pest problems than those that are neglected.
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Last modified: April 10, 2017