compacted soil

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by lawnguy26, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. lawnguy26

    lawnguy26 LawnSite Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 208

    With our sandy soils here in Florida, we don't have much use for aeration, at least not in St. Augustinegrass.
    However, soil can get very compacted in heavy traffic areas or areas that are continuously wet.
    What is the best (quickest, cheapest) way to aerate/loosen soil in small areas?
    Shovel? Gypsum(don't think we have much clay here)? Spiked Shoes? Do they sell a manual aeration tool?
  2. GreenUtah

    GreenUtah LawnSite Senior Member
    from SLC, UT
    Posts: 866

    The spike(long 4" plus) shoes are very comical, but in theory would work to loosen the soil. They do make 2 and 3 plug step down aerators that work pretty well for small areas. If I were to think about amendments on a sandy soil, I think I'd steer toward bulking the organics by topdressing with a fine mulch or thin layer of peat while coring it up and making that a regular part of my routine in those areas. check your local lowes or home depot, I've seen the step aerators there in the past.
  3. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,956


    Our Calcareous sand of S.W. Fla. has a very low tensile strength. Compaction is in fact a problem. Hollow core aeration with a organic top dressing does a world of good. However it is a hard sell. Organic Top Dressing can increase both CEC and Hydraulic conductivity. Slopes and Banks show the greatest benefit from Aeration and Top dressing. However it must be done on a twice a year basics to real have the turf express itself to the fullest.

    For real small areas a pitch fork can do some good, but also can be very labor intense. I have a Ryan Mark IV aerator and would like to sell it because I am now retired. I also have a Ryan 11 hp Verticutter for sale.

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