“What does core aeration do?” you might ask. “Why do I need to do it even when my lawn looks healthy?” Core aeration pulls 1-3 inch plugs of soil and turf from the lawn and leaves them on the surface to melt back in to the soil profile within a few weeks. Creating these holes helps eliminate thatch, introduces oxygen back in to the rootzone (which is needed for healthy turf), aids in relieving compaction, helps roots spread laterally, and helps water and fertilizers filtrate into the soil profile.
So, you might understand why those are good things, but what is that “thatch” stuff? Thatch is a layer of dead plant material, roots, and organic matter that can create an unhealthy buffer between the plant material above ground and the soil profile. It can block fertilizers, pest control, water, oxygen, and other nutrients from getting to the soil and being taken up by the plant. Taking a plug includes taking some thatch out of the lawn. The plugs also contain soil, which is introduced back into that thatch layer and helps that layer of organic matter decompose at a faster rate.
So whether your lawn is in seemingly good health or looking poor, you can always benefit from core aeration. We recommend aerating at least once a year, whether in the spring or fall. Some lawns with soil that is higher in clay content can even benefit more from a twice a year aeration, both in spring and fall. Contact us for any help you might need with core aeration for your lawn.