A beautiful lawn requires a wide variety of basic lawn care practices, such as fertilizing, watering and mowing. However, one of the most important tasks necessary for a beautiful lawn is aeration, which is necessary to ensure that much-needed nutrients find their way into the soil. Aeration is an essential element to a lush, healthy lawn because along with the nutrients, it also allows water and air to penetrate a layer of lawn thatch.
What is Aeration?
Aeration is the method used to create “pockets” or channels for air within the soil beneath the grass. These channels allow the water, nutrients and roots to move easier. If the grass is covered with layers of thatch or dried grass, it becomes compacted, making it extremely difficult for fertilizer and water to find their way down to the roots of the grass. Aeration relieves the compaction of soil, making it easier for the proper circulation of air, nutrients and water deep within the soil.
Does Your Lawn Need Aeration?
Not every lawn needs aeration, so here are a few things to be aware that will help you determine if aeration will be beneficial for your lawn.
- Heavy use- if your lawn has a lot of heavy use, such as kids frequently running through it or the dogs are often outside playing, the ground is most likely compacted and needs aeration.
- Your lawn was established by sod- soil layering most likely exists. Soil layering means the finer textured soil typically found in sod, is laid over the existing flat dirt, which creates a barrier between the two types of soil. The soil on the sod will typically “soak” up the water and nutrients, preventing them from reaching the deeper soil.
- Lawn from new home construction- during the construction process, the existing topsoil is often stripped or buried, causing the grass roots to sink into the subsoil, which deprives it of its much-needed nutrients.
- Dry, spongy grass- if your grass tends to dry out easily and/or it feels spongy, there is probably excessive thatch. Thatch is a layer of dead grass that builds up between the blades of grass and the soil. The thatch compacts, preventing nutrients and water from reaching the roots.
Aeration can help you achieve a beautiful lawn, but it is important that you use the correct tools and correctly do the task. If you feel your lawn could benefit from aeration, there are specially designed tools that can help to make the process go much smoother. Once you have completed the aeration, it is important to maintain the lawn with good lawn care habits, such as regular watering, fertilizing and appropriate mowing.
To learn more information about the importance of lawn aeration or about the best tools to use for the task, contact Ralph Helm Inc. Lawn Equipment Center.