The grass on your lawn is no different from any other living system.
A thriving, healthy lawn requires regular access to nutrients (such as nitrogen), water and air.
The need for the first two elements are common knowledge amongst even non-gardeners. But what about the third: air?
Plant organisms need air, and this is a fact that is often neglected by humans.
Like you, your lawn needs air to breathe.
However, grass has one crucial additional need for air that other vegetation does not necessarily have: air allows the first two essential elements (nutrients and water) to penetrate the soil, reach down to the roots and be properly absorbed into the blades.
Soil compaction often hinders this process, preventing air from reaching the roots of the grass.
Compaction (i.e. compression) is mostly caused by heavy use of a lawn, with feet and wheels moving over it.
Thatch (such as moss, dead grass and other debris that clogs up the lawn surface) can also stop fertilizer and water from reaching below the soil.
Thatch dries up the lawn surface.
The solution is to regularly aerate your lawn.
Aeration can be summed up by the “3 Ps”.
It is the act of plugging, puncturing or perforating holes into the soil, allowing air to circulate beneath the lawn surface.
That air will then alleviate compaction in the soil and assist the delivery of nutrients, fertilizer and water deep into the roots of the lawn. That’s where the three elements are needed the most, helping grass to grow deep, healthy and strong.
Aeration also prevents the build-up of thatch above the soil’s surface.
To summarize, proper aeration of your lawn (just twice a year), can deliver these two key benefits:
- Enhanced absorption of nutrients, fertilizer and water into the roots of your lawn
- Enhanced resilience of your lawn against heavy traffic, thatching and heat damage
As you can see, aeration is essential to the long term health of your lawn.
Make plans for regular aeration.