It is that time of the year to start aerating your lawn. Fall is better than the spring since the ground is warm but the nights are cool. This provides optimal conditions to core aerate your lawn.
Before you aerate, it is best to water the lawn or to perform the work after a lot of rain. This makes the soil easy to penetrate with the machinery.
After aerating your lawn, you will notice a healthier lawn. Water and nutrients are more easily able to get down to the roots of your grass as well if you provide fertilizer as well.
We have provided aerating to our customers for years to compliment their comprehensive lawn maintenance programs.
In terms of equipment for aerating lawns, we have used regular walk behind aerators with weights on the sides. These provide very good penetration but are very bulky and tiring to use.
From this machine, we moved on to a Plugr brand aerator. This machine rolls on wheels so is much more agile and less cumbersome to use. However the drawback of this machine is that it does not penetrate as well as it simply just is not heavy enough. It works by spinning tines in circles and “punching” holes into the ground. It also shakes quite a bit so easily breaks.
While at the landscaping expo down in Kentucky conducted by Planet, we discovered a machine called a Zrator. This Zrator is an add on to your existing lawn mower (which you probably already have if you are a landscaper and going to perform aerations). With this machine, you get the benefits of the weight of the machine being pushed down on the tines, as well as the speed and agility of a zero turn machine. So we have invested in this machine and will see how it goes on our properties this year. We have held onto the Plugr just so we have a machine that allows us to get into small gated back yards and smaller lawns.
The other advantage is that for most of our properties we will be overseeding at the same time. When we overseed lawns, when running our lawn care business, we will lower the deck of the mower so it basically scalps the existing lawn and the seed is able to get the best contact possible to the soil.