Deep Core Aeration
Deep core aeration is the process of creating hundreds of holes throughout your lawn by using a machine to pull plugs of soil. Aeration is recommended annually for the Edmonton area. There are two times of year that you aerate-spring or fall. Spring aeration is usually recommended over fall aeration. Fall aeration is a great option if you have a heavy clay based soil. Lawns that are aerated every year, spring or fall, are greener because water is able to penetrate the root zone more easily because of the newly created holes. Water from the rain or the sprinkler is absorbed 50% more by the lawn because of the increased absorption area created by aeration. Since grass is 90% roots this means a healthier greener lawn.
Aerating once a year is also necessary to reduce thatch and soil compaction. Soil compaction is how hard the soil gets from simply walking, mowing, playing or watering the lawn. It's just a matter of time before the ground becomes harder and the roots become shallow not being able to easily penetrate the hard soil. Grass roots also need air-without it they will suffocate. Opening up the soil allows the grass to breath again and stretch their legs to fill in the new holes. Water runoff is also a problem for compact soil. What is thatch? Thatch is the layer of lawn composed of living and dead stems, roots and crowns. It's literally the part of your lawn that looks like an old-time thatched roof. Thatch kept the pioneer's nice and dry and unfortunately it does the same for your lawn. Water has a very difficult time penetrating thatch to reach the roots. The roots stay shallow and are not encouraged to go deep into the soil. In dry or windy conditions the lawn will turn brown very quickly. Thatch also prevents the free movement of fertilizer and air into the soil. If your lawn is not responding to the fertilizer it might be getting very little of the nutrients necessary for it to grow properly. Without aeration, thatch can become one of your lawns most serious problems eventually preventing the growth of grass. In fact it is not uncommon to see the grass no longer growing in the soil but in the thatch. Aeration is recommended for lawns that are 3 years old and older-not necessary for new sod for at least two growing seasons.
Do not rake up the cores after aeration-10-15% of your soil is brought up to the surface by aeration. Mow as usual-the dirt part of the core will be broken down by the blades of the mower and the thatch will be sucked up into the bag. It is also an excellent time to over seed as it is not necessary to top dress the lawn with soil-the seeds will fall into the newly created holes and stay nice and moist.
Important Lawn Fact-Fairy rings thrive in lawns that are full of thatch-aeration is the best way to prevent fairy rings.
A good aeration job allows a tremendous amount of water to reach the root zone-taking advantage of rainfall and reducing the amount of time you need to water. The savings on your water bill can more than easily pay for the cost of aeration.
The aeration equipment makes the difference. Our aeration machines have 3/4" tines and pull cores up to 2 1/2-3" depending on the soil type or moisture we received in the Edmonton area.
There are several types of aeration equipment. We do not use drum or spoon type aerators. We use the Ryan LA28. The LA28 is a 400lb crank arm aerator. You cannot rent this equipment and it is considered the best in the industry. There are many different aeration machines out there but other machines do little or nothing to benefit your lawn. Yes cheaper equipment might mean a cheaper price but in the end it would be throwing good money after bad.
Important Lawn Fact- It's an excellent time to over-seed your lawn after aeration-the seeds will fall into the new holes that were created so topdressing the lawn with soil will not be necessary.
Aeration allows water to reach the root zone.
The best time to overseed a lawn is after aeration-notice the young grass growing in the holes.
Cores are 2 1/2-3" deep and 3/4" wide.
We use the best aeration equipment-the Ryan LA28 aerator.