Aeration: Creating Room for Growth
Aeration is one of the best things you can do for your lawn. It is the process of making thousands of holes in the turf to open the soil and break up thatch. The cores removed by aeration “melt” into the lawn and improve thatch breakdown.
Very wet weather is one of the conditions which makes aeration extremely important to the good health of your lawn.
Soil saturated with water forces air out. When this happens, soil becomes very compacted. Aeration is the best cure, because it removes part of the soil so that air and fertilizer can easily enter the root zone.
The root system of your lawn is constantly renewing itself by sending out new shoots. This new growth needs loose and open soil. If your lawn soil is heavy and compacted, the new roots stay near the surface or even in the thatch layer itself. This leads to a lawn that dries out too quickly and builds up thatch much faster than a deeply rooted lawn.
New root development is much greater in the fall than during any other time of year and continues through most of the winter. Your lawn can recover from many kinds of stress during these fall months. Aeration creates the growth zone new roots need to take the fullest advantage of the season.
Another big advantage of aeration is thatch control. Thatch is the layer of living and dead stems, roots and other grass parts above the soil. When it exceeds about one-half inch, it becomes a breeding and incubation area for all sorts of nasty lawn diseases and insects. It is very difficult to grow a healthy turf through a heavy thatch layer.
Aeration mixes soil cores above the thatch to speed up natural decomposition. By attacking thatch on a regular basis with aeration, you can often prevent the need for extensive renovation.
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