Aeration in Florida.. When is the best time?

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by bugguy8, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. fl-landscapes

    fl-landscapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,542

    Thats what I do to remove thatch yes. And aerate when I top dress compost
  2. ArTurf

    ArTurf LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Ark
    Messages: 4,342

    I don't live in Fla. I live in south Arkansas where I work with a variety of soils, clay to sandy. I feel it is beneficial to aerate all types of soils. I usually do it at least once a year and twice on heavy clay soils. The yards that receive aeration seem to do much better than the ones that do not. There is no doubt it helps. I know a person that manages our golf course and talk grass with him, if golf courses did not aerate you wouldn't have much of a course after long.
  3. scottgalat

    scottgalat LawnSite Member
    Messages: 72

    12 month's a year is aeration season in Fl.
    Usually fl. aerations are not done for soil compaction, although even sandy soils compact and sometimes need aerating. Primary reason is for thatch control in St. Augustine grass. It is supposed to be done EACH YEAR. This info comes from those that invented FLORATAM, the Universities of Fl. and Texas A&M.
    My own observations confirm this, having done 11,000 homes and watching the results closely.
    Fl. lawns benefit. Thatch is a problem and aeration is the only non-destructive methood of control.
    Also THATCH COMPACTION is an issue only addressed by a good aeration.
    The thach compaction forms at the soil service and obstructs anything from passing into the soil (ever hear of a thatch roof ?) Text books won't tell you about that but examine the soil service and see if a 1/4" of dense, dry, crusted thatch is present. If so, what do you do about it ? AERATE.
    Punch 100,000 holes in problem
    That thatch "cap" is keeping water and fertilizer and all the good stuff from reaching the soil, where the roots are supposed to be. It is forcing rooting to occur in the thatch layer which can be devastating eventually.
    Aerate any month in Fl., you are focusing on thatch, and it dosen't care what month it is. I would not aerate on a day where you will see freezing temps (Yep that happens in fl.) or if a freeze is forcast in the next few days.
    Some roots are exposed and the grass won't like that.
    100 degrees is fine, but running the aerater that day sucks.
  4. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,638

    With all that said, do you not agree that a properly done verticut is much more effective on removing thatch than aeration? The only down side that I can see to verticut if properly done vs aeration is that it CAN NOT be done year round.

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