aerator - core or spike

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by lee b, Jan 20, 2001.

  1. lee b

    lee b LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,617

    I'm going to buy a aerator, question is which is the best? Properties I mow are all commercial and the dirt is hard. Which would work better a spike or plug aerator, who makes the best, and how big of one can I pull with 20hp tractor? Thanks.
     
  2. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Posts: 4,831

    I have a 20 HP diesel and I pull the Lesco/Classen 48 with it. For hard dirt, the spike aeraters that I have used won't hold up. I'm talking the thin star type spike wheeled ones. Maybe the drum type with the welded on spikes might be OK, but you can't turn them very well without tearing up the turf.

    The one I have has a split axle so turning isn't bad with this one. It will penitrate any hard turf I've been on with weight added. The frame is built out of solid bar steel and should last for many many years. It has a towing hitch or 3 point hitch hook up. There are pictures of it on my equipment page.

    Lots of posts on this under Tow Aerater on my search page, middle link below.

    Eric
     
  3. kutnkru

    kutnkru LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,662

    Core aeration is the best as it opens the soil to aid in reducing water runoff, allows nutrients to be quickly reached and absorbed by the root zone, and relieves compaction.

    Kris
     
  4. bob

    bob LawnSite Platinum Member
    from DE
    Posts: 4,254

    Use a plug type aerator. I have the same one that Eric has and it's built like a tank! With a 20hp you shouldn't have any problems pulling it. I use my 10hp Gator to pull mine.
     
  5. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    If you use a spike aerator, it's possible that this can even work AGAINST your purpose. In the long run, this can loosen the soil up just enough to become compact again - even more so than it was to begin with.
     
  6. KirbysLawn

    KirbysLawn Millenium Member
    Posts: 3,486

    Yep, what Runner said. Spike "aerators" really compact the soil by pushing the dirt down, thus compacting the soil instead of aerating. Go with the plugger.
     
  7. Core aerators are the way to go. Removing the core/plug helps to loosen the soil. I would not waste money on a spike aerator.
     
  8. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,969

    "Equipment having solid tines or spikes should not be mistaken for aerating equipment. Aerators always remove a soil core whereas solid tine spikers do not. Spikers actually increase soil compaction as the movement of the soil to all sides by the penetration of the solid tine forces the soil into a denser mass."- from PA
    http://www.agronomy.psu.edu/Extension/Turf/Aeration.html

    "Practices such as slicing or spiking remove no soil and are not considered aerification."- from IN
    http://www.agry.purdue.edu/turf/pubs/ay8.htm
     

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