Should you aerate sandy soil?

Asked By: Helia Francois | Last Updated: 25th April, 2020
Category: home and garden landscaping
4.9/5 (890 Views . 11 Votes)
When aeration is not needed:
When the soil is not compacted. Sandy soils generally don't become compacted and rarely need to be aerated. If this type of grass is aerated to solve a soil compaction problem, overseed immediately to help thicken the turf quickly and minimize poten- tial weed problems.

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Consequently, how do you aerate your soil?

Soil aeration is usually done either with a plug aerator or a spike aerator. A plug aerator removes actually cylindrical plugs from the soil. A spike aerator pokes holes in the soil with a spike. Most lawn professionals recommend using plug aeration because piercing the soil with spikes may cause more soil compaction.

Furthermore, can you aerate when the ground is wet? For best results, aerate lawns when the soil is moist. Avoid aeration when soils are dry or wet. The tubes or tines will not be able to penetrate deeply when the soil is dry and may get plugged with soil when the soil is wet. Lawns that are properly aerated should have 20 to 40 holes per square foot.

In this regard, when should you not aerate your lawn?

Never aerate dormant lawns. For cool-season grasses common in northern lawns, early fall or early spring are the best times for aerating. For warm-season grasses common to southern lawns, the best time for aerating is late spring or very early summer.

Should I aerate before lime?

M.B.: Always aerate first. You want to make holes in the turf so your lime, fertilizer or grass seed has a place to fall and make good soil contact. Lime and fertilizer can wiggle down into the soil eventually even if you don't aerate, but you should always aerate before you reseed.

39 Related Question Answers Found

Should I pick up plugs after aerating?

Some lawns need aerating every year, although most can go two to three years before needing aerating -- which is good, if you don't like the look of brown plugs on your lawn. You don't have to rake the plugs left by aerating, but doing so gets nutrients back into the soil faster.

Can you aerate too much?

Loose soil doesn't need to be aerated very often. Especially thick types of grass may also call for aerating more frequently. As a general rule, you shouldn't need to aerate more than once a year at any time ("too much of a good thing" applies here, since you don't want to damage your soil).

How do you fix a bumpy lawn?

Apply scoops of fresh topsoil to low areas of the lawn using a shovel. Keep the new dirt no more than 1/2 inch thick so the existing grass can grow through it. If it's too deep, the dirt will kill the existing grass. Spread the dirt slightly with the rake if the dirt gets too deep.

What aerator is best?

Our Top Picks
  • Best Overall Lawn Aerator: Punchau Lawn Shoes at Amazon.
  • Best Large Lawn Aerator: Agri-Fab 45-0299 at Amazon.
  • Best Coring Lawn Aerator: Yard Butler ID-6C at Amazon.
  • Best Spike Lawn Aerator: Ames Steel Spike at Home Depot.
  • Best Shoe Lawn Aerator: GoPPa Lawn Shoes at Amazon.

What should I put on my lawn after aerating?


What to Do After Aerating Your Lawn
  1. Leave the soil plugs on the lawn to decompose and filter back into the holes left by the aeration machine.
  2. Apply fertilizer immediately after aerating your lawn to put nutrients into your grass roots.
  3. Reseed your lawn, especially in areas of the lawn where the grass is thin.

How can I aerate my lawn cheaply?

Push a hand aerifier, which has tube hollows that are 1/4 to 1/2 inch in diameter, or a spading fork through your lawn grass and into the soil. Pull the tool from the soil and grass, and check the soil moisture content. If soil sticks to the tool, then the soil is too wet to aerate.

Should I mow before or after aeration?

Recommended: Mow your lawn lower than usual at 1-1/2″ and clean up leaves. Try to mow one or two days before we arrive — and make it lower than usual. Mowing low makes both aeration and seeding more effective. Clean up any leaves, trash or other debris which might interfere with the aeration.

How do you make a homemade aerator?

How to Make a Homemade Aerator for Lawns
  1. Measure and mark every 2 inches along the long sides of the 6-by-12-inch plywood.
  2. Connect the marks to make a graph on the wood, using the ruler as a straightedge.
  3. Place the plywood on a grass or dirt surface.
  4. Drive a 4-inch nail into each of the drilled holes with a hammer.

How can I make my grass thicker and greener?

  1. Improve Your Soil. To get the most out of every step to a thicker lawn, take a tip from lawn pros and test your soil.
  2. Overseed. Overseeding is simply sowing grass seed into existing grass to make thin lawns thick—or keep them from getting thin.
  3. Fertilize.
  4. Boost Your Lawn.
  5. Irrigate.
  6. Mow Properly.
  7. Control Weeds.

Which is better plug aerator or spike aerator?


Spike and plug aerators are used to alleviate the negative affects of compacted soil on your lawn. Plug aerators are usually more effective at relieving compaction in lawns with a heavy clay soil since the solid tines used on spike aerators compact the clay soil further when they push into the ground.

Is aeration overseeding worth it?

Why Aeration Is Worth It
Aeration loosens compacted soil. And while grass might not be able to thrive in compacted soil, weeds can. Another reason to aerate: it makes lawn treatments like fertilization and reseeding more effective.

Will grass seed germinate on top of soil?

Unlike larger seed types, grass sprouts cannot push through a thick soil layer because the new growth is tiny and sensitive. However, the seed cannot be fully exposed on the soil's surface either. Grasses depend on a warm soil niche with surrounding moisture for germination.

Can you walk on lawn after aeration?

Don't mow the lawn for at least a week after aerating it. It's a good idea to water the lawn before aerating it because aeration is most effective when the soil is slightly moist. Aerate high traffic areas (where people frequently walk or children play) more thoroughly than other areas.

Can I mow right after aerating?

You mow too soon.
They'll need to acclimate and set roots before the first mow, so during the first two to four weeks post aerating and overseeding, don't mow. Once the grass reaches about three to three and half inches, you can fire up the mower for a fresh cut.

How do I rid my lawn of moss?


Once the cultural factors are fixed that caused the moss to appear, the moss can be eradicated using a simple solution of water and dish soap.
  1. Raise soil pH to make the soil more favorable to growing grass and less favorable for moss.
  2. Improve the drainage in the lawn.
  3. Fertilize the lawn.
  4. Reduce watering.

Do spike aerators really work?

Spike aerators work best when the soil is not extremely compacted. Because they don't remove any material, they're less effective at loosening the soil, and because they're pushing soil out of the way to make their holes, they can make compaction worse.

How do you know if your lawn needs aeration?

There a few telltale signs that your lawn is compacted. When the soil is compacted together, there is little room or water to slip through the lawn. If you see pooling in your lawn after heavy rain, your lawn is in desperate need of aeration.