Don’t Forget to Aerate!
If you’re a property owner with your eye on the prize of having a lush, lovely green lawn worthy of the high-gloss pages of a magazine or verdant enough to catch the eye of your neighborhood garden committee, you’ll probably be watching the calendar and trying to get a game plan for making those dreams of grass glory a reality. And while the need to water and fertilize is undeniably a part of getting things growing, you’ll need to make sure that all those measures actually pay off. Before you go to the trouble of applying your fertilizer, it’s important to take the time to open up your yard to reach its full potential by literally opening it up.
Odd as it may sound, “opening” the lawn is more a matter of punching little holes into the soil through a process called aeration. Aeration allows oxygen, water, and vital nutrients to penetrate the surface of the soil and make their way down the root system of the grass. Once the roots have access to all of that goodness, they have everything they need to grown nice and deep, thereby producing a much stronger and far more vibrant lawn.
Admittedly, it’s not the most convenient thing to do, and it can be time-consuming if you don’t use an aerator. But it’s not just a time suck that you should easily cast aside as a needless step. The reason that aeration is even necessary is because the soil compaction, built up grass, and lawn thatch that naturally occur over time impede the access your grass’s root system has to its life-sustaining sources of air, water, and nutrition. A starved root system leads to certain death, and that barrier will also block any fertilizer you’ve taken the time in applying.
Fall is an ideal time to aerate, as it’s a time of year when grass is gobbling up everything it needs to go into dormancy with a sufficient store of nutrients to keep it alive and ready to spring back into action next season. If you aerate now, you’ll have a lush lawn that reflects your efforts, so put this task at the top of your to-do list as the weather calms down and autumn creeps in.
Aeration is simple enough, so here are a few tips to get you on your way:
- The soil needs to be moist. Plan to aerate the day after it’s rained or water the day before.
- If there are areas of the yard that don’t need aeration, concentrate your efforts on the areas that are the most compacted and make multiple passes to ensure that everything is well broken up.
- To keep your yard looking tidy, allow the little plugs of soil that you’ve extracted to dry out and then break them down to blend into the surface. Running the lawn mower over them or pounding them out with the back of a rake will do the trick, so take a few extra minutes and get plugging.
- Once you’ve aerated, stay on top of your lawn maintenance. Water and continue mowing until it’s time to turn off the irrigation and put the mower in park for the season, but use that newly-opened field to fertilize and fortify your lawn in fall.
Unplug your lawn’s potential for great greenness! Give the team of outdoor experts at Executive Landscaping, Inc., a call to find out more about our seasonal lawn care services today!