As the summer heat leaves, it is time to pay some attention to your lawn to make sure it will continue to look its best. Aerate your lawn to ensure it stays healthy and looks attractive. Spring or autumn are the best times to do this maintenance work, although some recommend the winter as well.
Importance of Lawn Aeration
Aerating your lawn means driving holes about 7 cm deep into your lawn. This procedure is especially important if heavy clay soil is involved, and in areas where traffic has caused the soil to become compacted. If it is difficult to push a screwdriver into the soil, it is time to aerate.
Aeration is important because the holes allow: • oxygen to nourish the roots • water to move nutrients into the soil down to the grass roots • water drainage from heavier downfalls Aeration is somewhat like letting your lawn breathe and revitalize itself.
How to Aerate Your Lawn
Prepare your lawn before aerating it. Mow it, and be sure to remove debris like dead plants and leaves. If previous lawn cuttings have formed a thatch or layer, use a hand rake or powered lawn rake to remove this dead grass for easier penetration of water and nutrients.
If your lawn is small, you can aerate by hand. Use a garden fork, driving it about halfway into the soil and moving the fork back and forth a few times before removing it. You will have to do this over the entire area.
For a faster job or for larger areas, you could hire a lawn corer or mechanical aerator. These machines actually remove small plugs of soil from the lawn. Usually these chunks of earth are just left on the lawn because they contain nutrients and help decompose lawn thatch. They quickly break up and are reincorporated into the lawn. While all this effort to aerate your lawn is somewhat labour intensive, you will be pleased with the results when you see the increased vigour and overall health of your turf.