The subject of lawn aeration always comes up this time of year, and its surprising to see how often the question “how do I aerate my lawn?” comes up. Lawn aeration is a necessity for anyone who wants beautiful deep green grass, so here are a few tips on how to aerate like a pro.
1. Weight Is King
The biggest key for a lawn aerator is it has to be heavy. Your lawn has been baking in the sun for years, the dirt in it has settled, any loose soil on top has washed away, leaving a hard mass of dirt behind. In order to break up this hardened dirt, you will need lots of weight placed on a small surface area like an aerator tine. Many pluggers are heavy enough when they are built, others are built with a rack for placing concrete blocks on top of or are water-fillable. The Everything Attachments lawn aerators are built with solid cast iron wheels on our independent wheel model, or are filled with heavy play sand on our drum style lawn aerator. Either one of these will be heavy enough without adding extra weight.
2.Pull The Plug
Many older models were known as “spikers” they featured many steel spikes welded onto a steel roller that would press into the dirt creating a hole. These spikers are inefficient in aerating lawns because they compact the dirt even further than what it already is. When you pull a plug out of your lawn, the surrounding soil can decompress to fill in the open hole along with rain dissolving the plug to help refill the holes during the next rain storm.
3.Spacing Is Important
It is important that you leave 6 inches of space between rows when plugging your lawn, the goal of aeration is to allow oxygen to reach the roots of your grass, not tear up the whole yard. You want to leave most of the yard intact, a little goes a long way when it comes to aeration.
4.Twice A Year Is Enough
Aeration is to be done twice a year for maximum benefit. Plugging your yard once in the spring and once in the fall keeps soil compaction down, helps keep the thatch layer under control, and ensures that the water can penetrate deep into the root system of your lawn.
5.Seed While You Are There
Seed your lawn while the holes are fresh, before they start filling back in. The new grass will come up and help keep your yard a beautiful shade of green. You should also fertilize your lawn when the fertilizer can get into the root system, a tractor can be used for both of these tasks with a PTO fertilizer spreader. Your grass will be healthy and green and be the envy of the neighborhood.