Fall Aeration & Overseeding

July 22, 2015

Q: What is aerating or core aeration? 
A: Aeration which is also called core aeration is the process of perforating the soil, as well as any thatch layer that might exist, removing a core or plug of soil and depositing that core on the surface to break down.

Q: What are some of the benefits of aeration?
A: (1) Aerating will allow water, air and fertilizer to penetrate all the way down to the root zone. This in turn allows the roots to grow deeper, creating a more healthy and thicker lawn. (2) It will also greatly reduce the chances of having thatch buildup. (3) It will reduce soil compaction. (4) It will create an optimal environment if overseeding for direct seed to soil contact.


All cool season grass should be overseeded each fall to keep it thick and lush. Unlike warm season grass, fescue, rye and bluegrass don’t spread. Seeding it each fall will insure that your shade grass stays nice and thick.

Lawn aeration also helps to decrease the build up of thatch. Thatch is the build up of dead roots, rhizomes, and lawn clippings that have not been broken down between the surface of the soil and the layer of grass. If this build up of thatch becomes too thick, it soaks up any moisture like a sponge and does not allow the roots to properly affix themselves into the soil. The root system is not able to get the necessary nutrients it needs to withstand changes in temperature and long-term good health. In addition, excessive thatch provides a breeding ground for pests like insects and grubs, which will harm the lawn even further.

Aerating your lawn in the fall allows oxygen, fertilizers, and pesticides to penetrate into the root system, making it stronger and more resistant to the unpredictable weather of the Midwest.

Lawn Aeration gives an excellent opportunity for lawn seeding. Following lawn aeration, lawn seeding helps thicken up the turf layer and reduce weed growth.

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