Aerate: How to get oxygen into the lawn

a lush green lawn
a lush green lawn

For a lawn to grow nice and thick and be lush green, you have to aerate it occasionally. So-called aerification loosens the soil, more oxygen reaches the roots and the lawn grasses thrive better. Here’s how to do it correctly.

Lush green and dense: Who does not dream of such a lawn? For this dream to come true, lawn grasses need a lot of air in addition to regular care, such as lawn mowing and fertilizing. To achieve this, the lawn often needs a little support in the form of aeration. There are various methods that can be used for this purpose. Small areas can be aerated using simple means, while special equipment is available for larger lawns.

The roots of grasses need fresh air

You know it from yourself: Stuffy air makes you feel uncomfortable, makes you lazy and sluggish. Lawn grasses feel the same way: if their roots hardly get any air under a matted turf, the lawn grows visibly worse and becomes susceptible to weeds and moss.

Microorganisms are to blame for the felt, either working grumpily or not even being there at all. This is because in the soil, the tiny helpers actually ensure the continuous breakdown and conversion of organic matter, which otherwise accumulates as felt between the blades in lawns. Dense lawn de-thatch often forms on poorly maintained lawns that suffer from a lack of nutrients and often also have to grow on compacted and acidic soil. In such soils, the soil organisms no longer have any desire to work, dead plant remains and especially clippings from mulch mowing remain, moss migrates and a spongy mass forms between the blades. Frequent treading compresses this mass and the beautiful greenery is ruined.

When aerating the lawn, you comb out the de-thatch of dead blades and mosses from the turf, which gives the roots air again and allows them to fish for enough water and nutrients from the seepage water. This acts on the lawn like shock-airing an apartment, only with a longer-term effect.

The best time for aeration is between April and September. You should aerate your lawn annually, but at the same time you should continuously promote soil life so that dense tangles do not form in the first place. To do this, spread a soil activator or a thin layer of compost on the lawn and ideally fertilize with organic lawn fertilizer.

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