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Why Aeration is More Important and Less Daunting Than You Think

By: Craig Ransavage, Product Manager for RYAN

Summer is coming, which means the to-do list to get your house and your lawn ready for the active summer months is lengthy. You’ve got to prioritize the tasks, and far too often, aerating your lawn tends to fall towards the bottom of that list. There are a few reasons for that. People think it’s too much work, takes up too much time and money, or worst of all, that it doesn’t matter altogether. In reality, none of those have to be true—and the last one certainly isn’t true. Aerating your lawn is something that you can do yourself, and it has a positive impact that can last not just through this summer, but for years to come.

Why is Aerating My Lawn Important?

No matter where you are in the country, spring aeration will benefit your lawn. After harsh winters in the North and stress in the South, soil can get compacted. This in turn stunts root growth and keeps nutrients from getting down into the soil. Aerating your lawn loosens up the soil, allowing the turf to breathe and obtain access to what it needs: water, fertilizer and seed. It also provides more room for the roots to grow deeper and stronger. The process of aerating your lawn loosens the soil compaction by poking holes in it and then pulling the plugs or cores out. This opens up the soil and allows the plugs or cores to loosely dissolve back into the ground with rain.

This results in a healthier lawn that stands up better to activity include healthier roots, increased curb appeal, and increased property value. In addition to spring aeration, many homeowners also aerate their lawns in the fall to relieve stress and compaction before a harsh winter arrives.

Don’t I Need to Hire A Professional?

Many people avoid aerating their lawn because they feel like they need to hire a pro, put another machine in their already full garage or handle a machine they have no business touching. Yet most rental dealers have them for rent. This option should just take you a couple hours, and if you can handle a push mower, it is likely that you can handle a walk-behind aerator as well. There are many different kinds of aerators out there. If you’re renting one, you’re likely going to be using a walk-behind aerator. When you rent one from a local dealer, they’ll often give you a quick run-through on how to work it. Some aerators also have a text-to-video feature where you can see the machine operation in short videos on your phone.

It works a lot like a push lawn mower, except for each pass, you drop the aerating tines down and pull the tines back up before you turn around. Below is an image of what tines look like on most aerators. This is what leaves behind plugs (or cores) that dissolve back into the soil with rain. Depending on the size of your lawn, aerating shouldn’t take you more than a couple of hours, if that.

It is recommended for neighbors to rent aerators together as a means of saving money and the hassle of transporting it. You can take turns with the machine throughout the day and end it with an aeration party—complete with a cookout!

Does Aeration Really Make A Difference?

You’re going to see a healthier lawn this year when you aerate, but the impact of aeration goes beyond this spring. With deeper, healthier roots and more room for airflow and water absorption, the lawn will develop a better foundation for years to come.

Beyond the grass, the soil itself becomes healthier because it has better access to nutrients. The turf can also better handle the stress of heat and cold with thicker, deeper roots.

To get started with finding a rental dealer, visit the RYAN website. If you don’t think you’ll have the time or ability to do the aerating yourself, contact your landscape professional and ask about aeration services.

One BOB-CAT Lane, P.O. Box 469

Johnson Creek, WI 53038 U.S.A.

(920) 699 2000

Fax: (920) 699 6836

Article by Craig Ransavage, product manager for RYAN

For more information on RYAN and their turf renovation products, please visit their website at www.ryanturf.com.

Once you have aerated your lawn, don’t forget to apply some Lawnifi® fertilizer to boost the performance of your grass!

Sod University is a rich resource for the lawn and garden enthusiast and includes educational content, interactive tools and expert insights on all things lawn care.  Research and science continue to drive the turfgrass industry, but it is the desire to have the best looking yard that fuels our passion.

For more information on the basics of aeration, read Does Your Lawn Need Aeration? To understand a better foundation of soil management for your lawn, check out our Soil Management for Lawns blog.

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