Ok, let’s first find out what Lawn Care Aeration is. Aeration is the act of poking the soil with small holes. These small holes allow water, air and fertilizer to better reach the roots of your lawn. This in turn helps the roots grow deeper producing more vigorous growth.
You should aerate your Lawn because it needs air, water, as well as fertilizer.
Soil that lacks air circulation can result in slower growth, excess water run off, a shallow root system and a lawn that is more susceptible to insects, disease and heat stress.
There are two main types of Aerators. They both involve the same type of motion by a specialized piece of equipment.
One type of Aerator, as it is traveling along your lawn will poke equally spaced out holes into your lawn.
The second type of Aerator will pull small plugs of soil out of your lawn leaving equally spaced holes in your lawn and deposits the plugs on to your lawn.
The type of aerator that pulls grass plugs out of your lawn and deposits them on top of it is the much better choice between the two.
Why? These plugs are left on the lawn to dissolve in a couple of weeks or are mulched into your lawn to provide it with a thin layer of top dressing as an added benefit.
If you use the aerator that just pokes holes into the ground you would also be compressing the soil.
A spring loaded spike that pierces the ground to leave the hole as the machine is travelling over the lawn, compresses the soil, which is not normally desired as the point of Aeration is to try to help increase your lawns’ air flow (as well as the flow of water and fertilizer) to the roots.
Lawn Care Aeration combined with seeding your lawn will allow the top dressing, grass seed and other nutrients to penetrate the soil in turn giving a huge jump start to a greener, healthier lawn this season.
This procedure can be done by most of us in good shape, but it requires specialized equipment that is quite costly for the average person to purchase.
I recommend that you rent one of these machines from your local power equipment rental store.
To use one of these machines you will follow a lot of the same principles as mowing your lawn.
First, when going to do your lawn care aeration, check to make sure that there is gas in the gas tank
Second, make sure the fuel shut off is open. The switch is found between the gas tank and the engine. (if it has a fuel shut off switch)
Third, look over the area that you are going to aerate making sure that there are no unwanted items on the lawn that you will damage or have to move which will throw off your pattern and rhythm. (garden hoses, lawn chairs, kids toys, etc.)
Fourth, set the throttle to the rabbit symbol (fast) and pull the recoil rope out quickly to start the engine. (it may take more than one pull to get the engine to start)
Fifth, reduce the throttle a small amount and engage the drive lever to guide the aerator to a corner of your lawn where you want to aerate.
Sixth, align the aerator in the direction along the edge of the lawn you want to start and engage the drive handle and the tines (the mechanism that makes/pulls the soil plugs) handle together.
As You begin lawn care aeration to your lawn you should be travelling down the edge of your lawn. If you are going too fast then just slow down the throttle a little bit more until you find a speed that you are comfortable walking at. Once you reach the end of your lawn stop by releasing both of the handles together.
You will have to manually turn it in the next direction you want to aerate by lifting up on the main handle bar and facing the front of the machine in that direction.
If your lawn is basically a square then you should go all the way around your lawn twicefollowing the outer shape. This will give you a border area in which to turn the machine around after each pass you take across your lawn.
The number of passes you will have to make depends on the size of the aerator you are using and the size of your lawn.
You will only have to make passes in two directions, the same as you would if you were mowing your lawn. (down to the other end and then turn back again returning beside the pass you just made)
Repeat this pattern until your lawn is filled with small holes and grass plugs.
Once done disengage the tines and move the machine to your trailer to return it to the rental service or a safe place where you can wash it down and fill the gas tank back up (as they will charge you for gas as well as the rental fee) while you call the rental service to come pick up the machine.
Congratulations, You have just aerated your lawn.
Lawn Care Aeration should be done once or twice a year, the spring and/or fall. It should be done before any over seeding or fertilizing is done, to allow the seed and/or fertilizer to reach the soil and roots of your established Lawn.
“Keep It Simple to Succeed” lets get out there and make our lawns healthy and green!