Why and When Should I Aerate, Compost, and Reseed My Lawn?
Aeration extracts 2-5″ plugs of thatch and soil out from your lawn, allowing air, water, and nutrients to reach the roots of the grass more effectively. Aeration improves drainage, promotes root growth, improves resiliency, improves fertilizer and water uptake, and allows nutrients to work deeper into the soil. Aeration also reduces soil compaction and reduces the chance of puddling. When the soil is compacted, the grass is not able to uptake necessary nutrients and water. Walking, mowing, and other activities on your lawn cause soil compaction. Aeration helps to relieve this compaction to allow flow of the elements that are vital for strong, deep root growth.
Compost is decayed organic matter that is full of nutrients, creating a wonderful fertilizer for plants. It is important for your grass to have a supportive and nutritious base to grow from. If your lawn has bare spots, excessive weeds, poor soil condition, general lack of vigor, or heavy traffic, compost is a great solution. Compost is used as a soil conditioner, fertilizer, nutrient additive, and natural pesticide for your lawn. Compost improves soil structure, adds organic matter to the soil, reduces weeds and disease, and reduces irrigation and nutrient runoff.
Overseeding drops new grass seed into the soil, keeping your existing turf intact. Overseeding fills in any gaps that may be present from grass dying away or patches where weeds have been killed off. Your lawn is a perfect candidate for overseeding if it needs excessive amounts of water or fertilizer to survive, is insect or disease prone, or looks just plain “worn out.” Overseeding improves the density of your lawn, boosts your lawn’s color, and builds your lawn’s resistance to disease and drought.
When is the Best Time to Perform these Services?
After the first week of September up to early October is the best time to aerate, compost, or reseed. The temperatures during this time period are not too hot to burn off the new grass, but also not too cool to prevent the new grass from sprouting. Germination takes place from 7-21 days. During the first month, the newly planted grass is most susceptible to weather, disease, weeds, and other harmful causes of growth stunt. This means you want to be sure that your grass is established before the first frost to have a happy, healthy lawn.