Core aeration can benefit your lawn in many ways if done on a regular basis. For those of you not familiar with the process of core aeration let me explain how it works. There are two types of aeration, spike and core. Spike aeration involves puncturing the ground with metal spikes creating slits. Core aeration removes plugs of soil about an inch wide and two-three inches long. Spike aeration does not really accomplish much, this is why we recommend core aeration. The reason why core aeration is so important is because it actually removes a plug of soil. Removing the plug of soil creates many benefits for the turf grass.
The importance of core aeration in your lawn.
Core aeration can be done in the spring or the fall. The reason why we don’t aerate in the summer is because of the heat and lack of moisture. In order to get the deepest plugs, you need to core aerate in the spring or fall. Also if you aerate in the summer, you can harm the grass. Exposing the roots of the grass plant to heat can cause stress on the grass causing it to die out. There are four main reasons to core aerate your lawn. The benefits are found below.
- Reduced soil compaction. Over time your ground can become compact. Compaction increases run off of water and fertilizer because it is not able to be absorbed into the soil. Core aeration opens up pockets in the ground to reduce this compaction. When the ground settles and fills the holes back in, the ground is not as compact.
- Increased water and nutrients. Removing plugs of soil allows water and nutrients to reach the roots of your grass. This increases nutrient and water intake for the plant.
- Reduction in thatch. Thatch is the layer of dead grass between the dirt and live grass. Thatch acts as an insulator to the ground when it is at a healthy layer. When it is too thick, it deflects nutrients and water and it can actually negatively affect the health of the grass. When soil plugs from core aeration are put on top of thatch, they help decompose the thatch layer.
- Stimulates new growth. Core aeration will also stimulate new growth in your lawn. Existing grass plants will work to fill the voids were the core aeration occurred. This will improve the health of your lawn. Over seeding is also beneficial right after core aeration. The seed will fall into the holes and act as if it were planted.