Benefits of Lawn Aeration

It is beneficial to aerate your lawn in early spring and/or the fall, before it is time to seed and/or before the ground freezes. Aeration means “to ventilate” or “to provide air” by coring or pulling out “plugs” of soil. Aeration allows the soil and roots to receive the water and air that they desperately need in order to grow straighter and healthier blades of grass.

Some examples of where aeration is needed is when the lawn does not drain properly — the soil will not soak up the water quickly so there are large brown, dry patches where the grass does not grow. Also, a well-traveled “foot path” as well as if there are excessive weeds such as crabgrass and dandelions growing in a patch.

By extracting cores of soil from a lawn, an individual is breaking up the knotted roots and thatched soil in order to allow water and air to penetrate deeper into the soil and reach the roots so that the grass grows straighter and greener — healthier.

A “woody” organic material develops on the top of the soil and under the growing grass and this is known as thatch. If allowed to continue to grow, thatch could lead to insect infestation, drought or lawn diseases; it could literally suffocate a lawn so that it won’t grow. Core aeration helps to reduce thatch buildup by removing some of its increasing production of the organic material.

Core aeration breaks up the knotted roots by cutting out sections or “chunks” of the roots, soil and grass so that what is left can grow back together and receive more of the air and water it needs to survive and thrive as a healthy lawn.

After core aeration is completed, it may be tempting to pick up all the “plugs”, but it is best to leave them lying on the lawn because the soil plugs provide needed nutrients for the growing grass and they will eventually dissipate and become part of the lawn again.