With North Carolina’s springtime quickly approaching, it’s time to start considering how to get your lawn looking its best. While waiting until the warm weather approaches in April or May is tempting, the best time to aerate your lawn is in the winter months.
Fort Smith Landscaping has expert advice for how to best keep your yard and soil in good health through spring aeration. As a homeowner, you know you want to have a lush, green lawn that doesn’t show signs of turning brown or having bare spots. However, you are unsure of the process of achieving the lawn results you desire.
Read on to learn how to care for your lawn through the aeration process.
What Is Aeration and Why Is It Important?
The overall health and growth of your lawn benefits from regular mowing, weeding, watering, and fertilizing. However, most homeowners overlook the importance of lawn aerating in addition to those other often-performed tasks.
Mowing and weeding your grass, as well as everyday traffic on the lawn, can lead to what is called thatch buildup. Thatch is the accumulation of organic matter such as old grass, roots, and weeds that lay on top of your lawn, making it difficult for your grass and soil to soak up water, oxygen, or other nutrients it needs to grow.
Through lawn aeration, the thatch layer on top of your lawn is broken up. This creates a series of holes throughout the soil compaction, allowing the soil, root system, and actively growing grass to thrive.
What are the Benefits of Aerating Your Lawn?
- Allows nutrients to reach the soil and help avoid moisture-related problems.
- Resists harmful toxins from building in the root system.
- Prevents disease and other pathogens from affecting your plant life.
- Promotes plant health and the activity of beneficial microorganisms.
- Makes seeding more effective.
- Limits fertilizer and pesticides from running off.
- Builds a thicker, rich-looking lawn.
Signs Your Lawn is in Need of Aeration
- Signs of bare spots and stunted growth.
- High-traffic lawns where kids play or people walk on it a lot.
- Water pooling, puddles, or runoffs.
Can You Aerate in the Spring?
Knowing the right time of year to have your lawn aerated is vital to the success of your efforts. It’s always a good idea to sign up for regularly scheduled lawn care services that include aeration. However, if you prefer to try the DIY method or to understand the process, we have all of the best tips for what time of year is best for preparing lawns for spring through aeration.
For anyone living in North Carolina, your lawn experiences the most growth during the spring. It’s always best for a lawn to aerate when the grass is actively growing, but when temperatures outside are not overly warm or overly cold.
Warm vs. Cool Season Grasses
Whether your turf is made of warm or cool-season grasses will impact the best time to aerate. Warm vs cool-season grasses experience growth at different times of the year, with warm-season grasses growing between April and October and cool-season grasses growing more rapidly in both the spring and fall.
Warm-season grasses like Bermuda, Buffalo, and Zoysia should be aerated during the spring and summer, whereas cool-season grasses like Ryegrass, Fescue, and Kentucky Bluegrass should be aerated in early fall and early spring. Aerating when the roots of the specific grass type are most actively growing will facilitate the grass allowing oxygen into its pores.
Preparing Your Lawn for Springtime Aerating
Before you aerate it’s important to prepare your lawn. Let’s review how to best ensure your lawn will become enriched by the aeration process through proper preparation.
- Choose the best time for aerating based on where you live, the type of grass in your yard, and outdoor temperatures.
- Mow your lawn low.
- Prune dead areas of grass.
- Remove debris from the yard.
- Water your lawn.
The Process of Spring Aeration
There are two ways to aerate your lawn: core aeration and liquid aeration.
Core aeration is the traditional aeration method used. Core aeration is done by creating a series of small holes in your lawn with an aeration machine in order to break up compacted soil. For core aeration, you will have to rent an aeration machine or have a local and experienced landscaping company who are experts in aeration come to your home.
The aeration machine, which is pushed across the lawn just like a lawnmower would be, is designed specifically to penetrate compacted soil by driving holes into the ground so that water, air, and other nutrients can access the root system to promote growth.
Liquid aeration uses a specialized solution to do the job and requires no extra machinery. The liquid solution breaks down particles in the soil to create small pores to loosen the soil. The solution is simply spread across the lawn evenly and does the work on its own.
Both types of lawn aeration methods are effective, but many homeowners prefer liquid aeration for DIY projects due to the ease of not having to rent aeration equipment.
Aftercare Tips for Keeping a Healthy, Lush Lawn
After you aerate your lawn, there are more steps you can take to ensure your lawn resists weed growth and continues to grow thick, green grass.
- Apply pre-emergent: By applying pre-emergent herbicides, you can kill off any potential weed growth from germinating.
- Overseeding: Apply new grass seed over the existing seed.
- Add Fertilizer: Apply fertilization after aeration so that the fertilizer can reach deep into the pores created through aeration so that it reaches the soil and roots.
- Water soil: Within 48 hours of completing the aeration process, it’s important to give your lawn some moisture by watering the grass and soil. Continue to water every 3-4 days for the next 2-3 weeks after you aerate.
Fort Smith is Your Source for NC Spring Aerating Services
Are you ready to schedule your spring aeration service with Fort Smith Landscaping? Our lawn care aeration experts serve customers in the Wake Forest, NC area and know exactly what it takes to keep your turf looking plush and healthy.
Call us today at (919) 228-8495 or fill out our contact form to receive your free quote on spring aeration services today!