Air is important to all living organisms, including grass.
The roots of plants absorb air. Quite often sports pitches suffer because of this reason as soil is very compacted and air is not able to penetrate through.
Aeration involves perforating the soil with small holes to allow air to penetrate the grass roots. Sometimes, this causes a lot of confusion to lawn owners, as there are lot of tools that will do the same job – verticutter, spike aerator, plug aerator, hollow tinner, scarifier or slitter.
Sports ground aeration involves aerators that create holes in the ground, with or without removing a plug of topsoil
During the process of Aeration, the soil is perforated with small holes to allow air, water, and nutrients to penetrate the grass roots. This helps the roots grow stronger and this helps to produce more vigorous grass. With the help of Aeration, you can change or improve soil condition – soil can be loosened at a deeper level, thus letting the air access the roots. Aeration is the best way to tackle thatch, especially if it is thicker than 1 cm. During the process, this layer is penetrated, letting the air and nutrients through to the roots.
How to Aerate the lawn?
There are purposely designed tools to penetrate the soil at a certain depth, it can be as deep as tens of centimetres. Two main aerating tools are – a spike aerator and plug aerator. With a spike aerator you simply spike the ground, but with the plug aerator you remove a core or plug of grass and soil. There are different tools which require understanding and basic knowledge of how they work.
The depth, diameter and the number of plugs removed from m2, depends on the condition of your lawn. Remember if you are using plug aerator, make sure to collect all the debris.
Aeration should be carried out during the active growing season. Mow the lawn beforehand. It is beneficial to combine the aeration with other lawn care activities, like feeding, Verticutting and others. Because during the aeration the growing surface is increased make sure to water the lawn immediately after the process and at another 1 to 2 weeks.