After several years, mature plants begin to slow down their reproduction rate. Since a blade of grass lives only an average of 45 to 60 days, production of new tillers must continually outpace the dieback of older leaves. Young grass will produce tillers faster than older grass. Therefore, one of the most important secrets to maintaining a healthy, thick lawn is to make sure your grass is young. The practice of aeration overseeding lawns is the easiest way of keeping grass young.
• Overseeding lawns in fall reduces or eliminates competition from summer weedy grasses, such as crabgrass, foxtails, and other weeds.
• Soil temperatures are still warm in the fall, which is necessary for seed germination, while the cooler air temperatures are better for grass growth.
• Rain amounts and soil moisture is generally better in the fall.
• Overseeding lawns in the fall gives the grass a head start. The roots have become established before winter, which greatly reduces crop loss should you have a hot, dry spring.
Before overseeding is the perfect time to core aerate. Core aeration is the process of pulling out a plug of grass and soil approximately one half inch wide and three inches long. Walk behind, motorized core aerators are very heavy machines, some weighing several hundred pounds and take a little practice to use efficiently. Deep watering or rain should precede aeration for effective core depth. Even the heaviest aerators have difficulty penetrating dry ground.
The removal of a plug during aeration relieves soil compaction, while increasing gas exchange and water availability to the roots. Two or three passes with the aerator in different directions is best. Don’t worry about picking up the plugs; they can be left on the surface to breakdown naturally. In a few weeks they will be gone.
It’s almost that time! We have started scheduling our customers for Fall Aeration and seeding. Be on the lookout for an email or a letter from Dreamlawns with a great discount for prepaying for this important fall service.
Dreamlawns provides a double core-aeration of the lawn, going over each area at least twice, and providing hand work in the areas that the aerator cannot reach. We then over-seed with the highest quality blue tag seed which is 100% weed free and recommended by Virginia Tech, applying 6 pounds of seed per thousand square feet ensuring excellent coverage. This is our only service where we require payment in advance so don’t miss out on getting scheduled.