Aeration is a lawn care procedure which alleviates compaction and allows water, air, and nutrients to penetrate your lawn while stimulating beneficial bacteria, fungi, and protozoa to grow. These beneficial organisms are aerobic ("good guys"), meaning they need air to thrive. When the soil is compact, it has less air-holding capacity and becomes anaerobic.Anaerobic bacteria, fungi, and protozoa are the pathogenic organisms ("bad guys") that attack plants. Plant roots will not penetrate the anaerobic soil. The benefits to your soil include more aerobic biological activity and diversity. This increases the depth of the aerobic zone of your soil, thus increasing root depth and plant stability during extremes (drought, heat, etc.)
Compacted soil can cause grassroots to starve or die, as it prevents them from receiving the elements of air, water, and nutrients needed for growth. Aeration also helps penetrate lawn thatch, a loose layer of living and dead organic material that lies between the surface of the soil and the grass, and builds up when turf produces organic debris faster than it can be broken down. An excessive layer of thatch can cause problems for your lawn, but aeration can help prevent these problems naturally by exposing the thatch to beneficial organisms in the soil.
In areas of the country where the soil has high amounts of clay, lawn aeration should be performed at least twice a year to keep your soil from becoming compacted. Most lawns should be aerated at least annually, regardless of where you live. A professional lawn care expert like the friendly, knowledgeable staff at TDI Biological Lawn Services can help you determine the best time and method for aerating your lawn to promote optimal growth and minimize risk to your turf.
While dry soil is not ideal for aeration, the best conditions for lawn aeration are when lawn and soil are moist, but not wet or muddy. After aeration is fully completed, watering, seeding, and fertilizing can be undertaken. Seeds can realize better seed-to-soil contact at this time which will result in optimum conditions for successful germination. To get the best results, consult a lawn care professional to determine the best approach for your lawn to derive the greatest benefit. Proper aeration allows your lawn to breathe and grow biologically, producing healthy, vibrant green grass that enhances your home's curb appeal and provides your family with a beautiful, lush lawn you can all enjoy.