View Full Version : liquid aeration

09-06-2004, 04:02 PM
Has anyone heard of a product that is applied with a hose atatcment that claims to aerate soil.It comes as liquid and is diluted with water.Some golf courses actualy use it. I was woundering if anyone has heard of it? By Natur,s lawn copy/past https://ssl.cgicafe.com/clients/nat...com/aerify.html

09-06-2004, 04:59 PM
It appears that my favorite aeration method is under discussion here. It always raises a temptest in a teapot....but, here goes. We are talking about our old friend, surfactants/wetting agents. Does this approach work? From my years of experience, yes....if done correctly. First, let me explain that there are a number of various surfactants on the market hidden under brand names that do not spell out what they are. The straight forward, organic one that I have used for years can be purchased on-line from www.nitron.com. It is listed in the catalog as Nitron/A-35. This product is poured full strength into a hose end sprayer set to deliver one tablespoon per gallon. Easy to do. A gallon will last a long time for the average lawn/garden.
Let's discuss the various types of soil compaction:

1. There is normal soil compaction such as that left by heavy construction equipment. In this case, topsoil is usually added and grass seed or sod put in place. If a surfactant is used one time to water in the seed or sod and repeated several months later this usually will restore a normal, compacted friable soil. It will also aid seed germination and sod root development.

2. Next, the average lawn which needs areation once a year or every other year. If the soil is presently friable, draining well, then an annual surfactant application in mid to late summer and again in early spring is sufficient.

3. Now we come to our real problem lawn...ucky, thick clay soil. Here, fall top dressing coupled with a monthly surfactant application for a year, then every other month the next year, then four times a year thereafter is the method that has given me the best results.

4. Southern growers of Centipede, St. Augustine, etc. run into the problems of grass patches dying out and refusing to fill in again. Once it is determined that the problem is not Brown Patch then I suggest that a monthly surfactant application to those spots until grass is growing well again.

5. Surfactants aid plants in absorbing and utilizing both chemical and organic plant foods. Usually it is possible to reduce the amount of these products a bit when using surfactants in conjuction with them.

So, to answer the original question posted....using my experiences over the years, liquid surfactants do work. I would suggest that you purchase one marked organic so that you may also use it on vegetable gardens with various hard pan/clay soils, if you wish.

09-06-2004, 05:16 PM
:cool2: :cool2: :cool2: :cool2: :cool2: :cool2: :cool2:

09-14-2004, 10:14 PM
I don't get it.

You ask a question and then answer yourself?

09-15-2004, 08:29 AM
Its called a salesman -- an no ones biting!

09-15-2004, 01:39 PM
It is not me selling, i just wanted to know if anyone had tried it. After wrighting the first time, i ran into this other article and did a copy / past so that all readers would know what i was talking about. Now, i did not write it. As far as selling anything, i'm not. I am just thinking of trying it. Liquid Aeration is something that works as far as some people say. Don't take it from these passages, look it up and you will see that many people use it, including some golf courses. Sorry if i was misunderstood!!

09-15-2004, 04:46 PM
I beleive there was some misunderstnding. Hoever, it is undersndable. Whneever soemone brand new comes to a community and instantly starts singing the priases of a certain product -- you have to be sceptical.

As far as the advntages of surfactants in generl maintennce of lawns. They can be helpful -- but they are not the cure all they are sold as.

09-15-2004, 05:14 PM
nothing like a hollow or solid tine aerification!

Don't ever recall anybody in all my years on gc of somebody using such a product instead of solid or hollow tine aerification!

09-15-2004, 05:18 PM
I understand what you mean about a newbe, thanks for understanding. I have been reading online about these products that clain to be just as good as aerification by machines, or better. They say that it is something that has to be repeated to notice a differance. now how many times is the question. I spoke to a guy from one of the companies that said they use it on golf couses three times a year. They told me that depending on the hardeness of the turf would determin how many times to apply. According to him, you cannot over aerate with liquid aeration.
I would love to here from anyone that has used this stuff before. Many people online have a lot of good things to say about it???

09-15-2004, 05:20 PM
Most gc will aerify greens two to three times, or more with a solid or hollow tine aerifier!

09-15-2004, 05:38 PM
I htink calling it aerification is the problem. It works by reducing the surface tension between soil particles and therfore loosening the bond of those soils. That is nice -- allows better nutrient penetration and the like -- but does not open the soil like aerification.

09-15-2004, 05:54 PM
Check this out. I found it under soil sufactants online

09-15-2004, 09:16 PM
I've used aquatrol products many times, but their not aerification!!!!!!!!1

09-28-2004, 02:36 AM
Liquid aeration is all the rage on the Internet gardening boards this year. They must have gotten together and advertised or something.

Nitron is not a surfactant. At least they don't advertise that they are. They advertise that they are an enzyme product. As such I don't know what to say. After quizzing them, they claim their product is made much like beer is made.

There is another liquid aerifier that is a surfactant. The main ingredient is the same as found in 99% of all shampoos. It sells for $25/gallon. If you bought yourself a bottle of generic shampoo for a buck, you could make at least 10 gallons of the same thing for a cost of $0.10 per gallon.

Another product is a sulfuric acid material. It simply changes the chemistry of the soil for awhile.

Personally I don't like the surfactants because they are non selective insecticides. They work great as insecticides but the idea of killing the beneficial insects in the turf is the problem.

I don't like the sulfuric acid material because sulfur is a non selective fungicide. A lack of beneficial fungus is probably the reason 90% of the soils are thought to be too hard.

What I do like is the use of deep infrequent watering to soften the soil. When water hits the soil it seeps into the soil and is absorbed by the roots. The roots will swell up and push the soil crumb structure aside. Since the soil has to go somewhere, it often moves up slightly. Then when the roots shrink away from the soil particles, air gaps are left where the roots were. If the roots are deep, as is the case when you are in the deep infrequent watering habit, then you have an aerified soil. Turf grass roots can go 4 inches deep easily. Beneficial fungi can penetrate to a yard or more. When the fungi get wet, the same things happen with the swelling but at a deeper level.

Let's say you are deep watering on a weekly schedule in the summer. By the time day 6 rolls around, your surface soil might be pretty firm leading the client to belive the soil needs to be aerated. I realize core aerating pays for your new boat, but you at least need to know that when you water a "trained" soil, it will soften immediately. :p