All homeowners know that to maintain a beautiful lawn, they must complete basic lawn care practices including mowing, fertilizing, and watering. Aeration is also a crucial aspect of a healthy lawn, as it allows essential elements to reach the soil. Continue reading to learn more about aeration and when to aerate your lawn for the best results.
What Is Aeration?
The process of aeration involves making holes in your soil to allow air, water, and nutrients to reach the grass roots, helping them grow and produce a stronger lawn. Aerating is mainly done to alleviate soil compaction, as compacted soil impedes water infiltration and gas exchange between soil and atmosphere. This prevents proper circulation of air, water, and nutrients underneath the lawn. The roots may also be starved from the essential elements due to excess lawn thatch or heavy organic debris.
Should I Aerate My Lawn?
Almost every lawn can benefit from proper aeration. If your lawn gets a lot of heavy use from children and pets running around all day, the soil may be compacted and in need of aeration. Also, if your lawn was established as part of a brand new home, you should be aerating. The topsoil of new lawns is often stripped or buried, and the grass created on subsoil has been compacted by the traffic from the construction of the house.
Test your lawn to see if it dries out easily or has a spongy feel to it. These effects may mean that your lawn has an excessive thatch problem and needs aeration. Use a shovel to remove a slice of the grass (about four inches deep); if you notice the thatch layer is more than one-half inch, you should be aerating your lawn.
When To Aerate
Once you determine that your lawn needs aeration, it’s time to figure out the best time of year to start the process. The best time for aeration is during the growing season, as the grass can fill in any open areas after soil plugs are removed. Therefore, aerate lawns with cool-season grass in the early spring or fall, and aerate lawns with warm season grass in the late spring for best results. Soil plugs can be left on the surface of the lawn as they will decompose in a couple weeks.
Scientific Plant Service Is Your Go-To Source In Landscape Healthcare
Scientific Plant Service, located in Baltimore, is a privately-owned corporation, chartered in Maryland in 1957 by Frank J. Burke. We started as a full-service Arborist specializing in the care of shade trees and ornamental shrubs, but today we are a lawn and total landscape care company that is a huge part of the community. From aquatic environments and snow management to deer and mole control, SPS has services tailored specifically for your lawn and landscape.
We offer services in Maryland, Washington DC, and Virginia, including Harford, Baltimore, Carroll, Frederick, Howard, Anne Arundel, Montgomery, Prince Georges, Talbot, Queen Anne’s, and Calvert counties in MD, as well as Loudoun County, Fairfax County, Arlington, Alexandria, and Falls Church in VA. For more information, contact us online, or call us at 410-321-0970. Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest!