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Is My Lawn Unhealthy Due to Soil Compaction?


September 7, 2016

Many homeowners want to improve and enhance the quality of their lawn, but are uncertain how to begin. There are several aspects to enhancing your lawn and it starts with some simple steps. In fact, some basic steps can make a whole lot of difference between having a healthy loan and just the average. However, many homeowners are not taking advantage of this.

Soil Quality

Like flowers that are planted in a garden, the quality of the soil is essential to having healthy grass. To achieve a healthy lawn, then, it is important to place a lot of emphasis on the soil. Soil compaction has always been a deterrent when it comes to maintaining a healthy lawn. For that reason, aeration is one way to reduce soil compaction. Spring is the ideal time to get this done.

Lawn Aeration
When you aerate your lawn, there are several things that it does. These include:
  • Reduction of compaction from traffic or regular lawn mowing
  • Opening up the space, allowing air to reach to the roots
  • Reduction in soil compaction allows for better drainage
  • Grass plants have a better ability to use up the nutrients and water
In addition, normal aeration reduces thatch buildup. You can allow half an inch of this thatch because it offers a certain amount of cushion and it also protects the roots. Heavy buildup of thatch will only reduce water and the absorption of nutrients. It can also suffocate the roots.

The Frequency
Lawns can struggle to remain healthy due to soil compaction. If there is heavy traffic on the grass, it should be aerated at least once each year. Heavy clay soil will require more frequency in aeration. If you have sandy soil or receive light traffic on the lawn, it has to be aerated at least once per year as well or once in two years. If you reside in warm weather, you can aerate more frequently.

The Climate

For cooler climates, a single aeration is fine. However, if your soil is compacted, you should aerate the lawn during the early spring season. If you notice that your lawn is thinning out because of disease or winter damage, then you should aerate before you start fertilizing and seeding. This will help to thicken the grass more quickly.

Core Aeration
The easiest and simplest way for you to aerate your lawn, use a machine that takes out plugs of soil. While you can do it by hand, it is better to use a machine for improved results. You can rent one of these aeration machines for a day from a local garden center.

Getting Ready
When you are ready to aerate, make sure that the soil is only moist and not completely wet. If the soil is sandy, be sure to lightly water it one day prior to the aeration. If you have heavy clay soil, you should water it two days prior to the aeration. For complete aeration, take the machine across the lawn two times, go one time from east to west and then another time from north to south. Remove any plugs that have been left behind.

Are you ready for improve your lawn, creating a healthy landscape. Contact My Landscaper today to discuss your landscape needs. You can call 720-882-5772 to schedule a consultation.