How to Aerate Your Lawn
Time Required: Under 2 hours
One of the most overlooked tricks in lawn maintenance is lawn aeration. This task keeps your yard fresh and healthy while promoting growth. This guide explains how and when to aerate lawns each season.
- Over time, grass and soil can become compressed and compacted. This creates thatch, which is a thin layer of dead and decomposing grass between growing soil.
- As thatch grows, it prevents air, water and fertilizer from getting to the roots of your grass. This causes it to grow thinner and die.
- Aeration makes holes in the lawn and loosens the soil beneath. This lets oxygen, water and important nutrients reach the roots, resulting in lush, green grass.
- Whether you're using a core aerator or a steel spike aerator, you should cover the lawn completely in one direction and go back over it in a perpendicular motion.
- Spike aerators punch holes in your lawn as you go, while core aerators work to remove grass and soil plugs. We recommend leaving these plugs to decompose on their own, which will probably take about a week.
Tip: A steel spike aerator is ideal for small yards, while a core aerator is designed to handle bigger spaces. Both of these are available at The Home Depot Tool Rental Center.