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aerating lawns

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by sticky, Mar 12, 2005.

  1. sticky

    sticky LawnSite Member
    Messages: 8

    What is the real scientific purpose of aerating a lawn? If you don't fertilize afterwards, is it a waiste of time? What is the ideal deapth to achieve?
  2. Green Masters

    Green Masters LawnSite Member
    Messages: 42

    The main purpose of aerating is to relieve compaction. It allows air to get around the roots. The average depth of aerating is 3 ". Make sure to use a core aerator that pulls out plugs.
  3. bubba7728

    bubba7728 LawnSite Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 3

    Aerating will help to promote root growth and relieve compaction. When aerating just make sure the soil is moist so you pull good plugs about 2" plugs are ideal.
  4. Kelly's Landscaping

    Kelly's Landscaping LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,687

    Silly question but since I do not aerate and many do I have and observation. I often hear people complain about ZTRs leaving ruts and weighing too much. Of more then 300 lawns I have cut with these types of mowers I have only seen this problem on 2 accounts. Is it possible that by relieving compaction that the ground becomes more likely to squish under the weight a 1500-2000 pound mower?
  5. lampeslawnservice

    lampeslawnservice LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 323

    You made me think on that one, hmmm. I would have to say no, because it is only relieving compaction in that spot where the plug is removed. That hole get filled with other dirt and debris. Just a guess, not a rocket scientist though.
  6. 1BadHawk

    1BadHawk LawnSite Member
    Messages: 127

    I thought it was good to aerate both in the spring and fall, and best if pre and post emerg are applied directly afterwards.
  7. walker-talker

    walker-talker LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 4,771

    Who makes a 2000 pound mower that you would put on a residential lawn? That's a heavy mower. I think my Walker only weighs in the neighborhood of 1100 pounds.
  8. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,845

    IMO the only time to aerate is in the fall (take a look at the golf courses in your area as to when they aerate the fairways) for two reasons.

    1. frost is natures way of expanding the soil in the winter, and loosening compaction. Aeration (Plug type) gives the ground more room to expand.
    2. The fall fertilizer mixes are usually heavier in the last two numbers, which are the nutrients necessary for root developement. Fall aeration followed by the fall fertilizer application allows the nutrients to get deeper, faster and more efficiently.

    Thanks Brad
  9. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    My Toro 325D's weigh around that much, so does a Ferris 5000Z Matt. I use my Toros lots of places.
  10. Precision

    Precision LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,995

    Maybe that 2000# ZTR includes the driver ;)

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