Core Aeration

Core aeration is often one of the most overlooked services when it comes to a healthy lawn. It is also one of the most important things you can do to keep your lawn healthy. In Central Iowa the soils contain clay. Claysoils compact more than soils that contain sand. Grasses growing in compacted soil have difficulty establishing a good root system. The grass is slower growing and under stress. Compacted soil can increase the amount of weeds established in the lawn. Some weeds thrive in compacted areas where the grass plant struggles. These extreme areas are generally along driveways, sidewalks, parking lots, and paths created by repeated use. Soil is always settling and the environmental conditions such as snow pack and rain also help to compact the soil. Anytime the grass plant is under stress, you increase the chances of noticeable insect and disease damage. These are all reasons that lawns should be aerated at least once a year in the fall. Listed below are some of the benefits to core aeration.

  1. Improves air, water, and nutrient uptake by the grass plant.
  2. Reduces compaction, which helps grass compete with weeds that thrive in compacted soil.
  3. Helps new sod become better established. (sod should be installed for a year before first core aeration)
  4. Helps to break down the thatch layer.

Core aeration can be done in the spring and fall. We recommend aeration once a year in the fall. When the lawn is aerated in the fall it allows the plugs to break down over the winter. Lawns that that have a thatch layer greater than ½ inch or a lawn that is extremely compacted would benefit from spring and fall core aeration.

Learn more about the benefits of core aeration.

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