lawn care, gardening
Here is Lesson 6 in the 8 Lesson Lawn Restoration Series at www.yardcare.com terry
Aerate Your Lawn
Aeration, also called core cultivation or aerifying, is an important part of any lawn restoration program. It allows grass roots to deeply penetrate the soil, helps fertilizer and organic matter get to roots, allows oxygen to reach the roots, and makes it easier for water to soak into the soil. Simply aerate once in the fall. Avoid aerating during dry summer months because you may damage an already stressed lawn. Also, avoid periods when weed seeds are prevalent, as that could cause weed infestation. There are several types of aerating tools. Manual aerators allow you to do small areas a little at a time and to aerate corners and other tight areas that are difficult to reach with large equipment. You supply the power for these tools by pushing the hollow cylinders or corers into the turf - much as you would push in a spade. The tool cuts a plug, or core, that is extracted and deposited on the lawn the next time you push it into the turf. Small power aerators work similarly and are available at rental stores. Some machines use a rotating tillerlike action that pushes the corers into the soil and extracts small plugs, as the machines pull you forward. These lawn mower-size machines will fit into a full-size station wagon, mini-van, or pickup truck and they require two people to transport them.
Avoid aerators that only poke holes in the lawn without removing plugs because they are of less value to your lawn. The largest aerators will require a truck and several helpers to transport them but do a better job. With these machines, the corers are vertically plunged into the turf to extract a sizable plug. You may opt to have a pro tackle this job.
Aerators penetrate your lawn best when the soil has been moistened by rain or watering; so, unless it rains, water your lawn the day before aerating. When aerating, make several passes in several directions over every square foot of lawn. Next, break up all the plugs extracted by the aerator with the back of a rake or by dragging a metal mesh doormat or section of chain-link fence over the plugs to spread the soil. You can also mix the soil from the plugs with the topdressing you added in Step 5. Then water the lawn thoroughly.
Terry Blackburn. Internet Marketing Consultant, living in South Shields in the North-East of England. Author and Producer of blog http://www.lawnsurgeon.blogspot.com Author of "Your Perfect Lawn," a 90 Page eBook devoted to Lawn Preparation, Lawn Care and Maintenance. Find it at http://www.lawnsurgeon.com
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lawn care, gardening