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aerate and seed OR seed and aerate

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by grassmasterswilson, Aug 8, 2012.

  1. turfcobob

    turfcobob LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 878

    The most accepted pratice is to Aerate first making as many holes as you can. 3 to 4 passes or as many as you think is needed. This will not only loosed up the soil but will also expose soil and bring some to the top as cores. let them dry a bit so they will break up, then proceed to oveseed with a slicing seeder with fixed knife blades. Some will even spread the seed first and then go over the area with a vert-i-cut machine to slice in the seed. Eith way you will be breaking up the cores, pulling up thatch / while making slices down to and into the soil and stirring the seed up into the thatch you have just pulled up. When you are done water and the water will wash the seeds and dirt out of the canopy you have made and into the low spots on the lawn. This would be the aeration holes, the slits made by the overseeder and other low spots that have no grass growing.

    After-care is the most important part. If the homeowner does not follow through with a good watering program all your work could go to waste.
  2. grassmasterswilson

    grassmasterswilson LawnSite Platinum Member
    from nc
    Messages: 4,918

    Often in area where the turf is thin or the soul I hard you get a plug effect where the seed only germinates in te plug holes. I see this in some of my lawns where full shade is an issue. I also attribute a lot of it to poor watering by the homeowner.

    For those who slit seed can you give me an idea of the pricing for it? Can you seed at 6 pounds per 1000? 2 passes over the lawn? I can get about 10 per 1000 for aerating. I may offer slit seeding if I can make it worth my time. I own an aerator but would have to rent a slit seeder.
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  3. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    If an area needs to be reseeded, the amount you charge is up tp you when you do the job... 2 passes are not a necessary thing to do, but you may look back at the single pass and decide to do another... the bottom line is when/if the seed germinates, that the entire lawn has a fresh green look that is uniform, not clumpy or spotty...

    If you do as Turfco suggests making 3 or 4 passes with an aerator, then obviously you have enough dirt topside that your seed will easily be covered even in the small spaces between the holes,,, but that is about the only way the seed will germinate in those locations...

    The surface of your lawn between the holes, doesn't have any more seedbed preparation than simply broadcasting onto the turf with no prep... 3 or 4 passes with an aerator can really make a big mess with lots of dirt coverage, which does work, but I wouldn't want to do that every year... When aerating, I often hit those real thin spots with several passes and handle them separately...

    Also, it is possible to slit seed stressed turf, as we have right now, but aerating is not an option until the grass roots are 'actively growing' again...
    We finally got a real nice rain, that lasted over 24 hours, so I'll begin overseeding and patching today...
  4. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 7,961

    what kind of seeding are we talking about?

    If it is a winter rye grass over seed job then I would just scalp the lawn and seed it.

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