Who can relate to this scenario? You water and fertilize your lawn but no matter how much lawn maintenance you do, certain areas just seem to not respond to all your hard work. The cause could be something completely different from what you are used to. If the area is commonly used for playing, walking, or any other activity, the cause could be soil compaction.
How Does Soil Become Compacted?
Soil compaction occurs when either too much traffic on the surface causes the soil to become packed down or too much thatch has built up under the grass. In both cases, your grass is being denied essential nutrients, water, and even air. When grass is deprived of these three elements it can weaken your grass, turning it brown and thin. The dry, packed soil strangles grassroots and if it is left untreated the grass can die.
Signs of Soil Compaction?
Symptoms of compact soil might include drying or dead grass and very hard soil. Your first instinct may be to turn on the sprinkler but if symptoms don’t improve you may have compacted soil.
Compacted soil exhibits other telltale signs such as pooling water. When soils are so dense that they don’t even allow water to be absorbed, it can collect in pools or puddles in your yard which can turn into a breeding area for mosquitoes.
Spongy squishy grass is a symptom of thatch buildup on top of the soil. This not only strangles the grass but can also attract lawn pests such as mole crickets.
To test whether your soil is compact or not is to the screwdriver test. Push a screwdriver into the soil. If you cannot easily push the screwdriver to the hilt then your soil is compact and is not ideal.
The Benefits of Aeration
When your soil is exhibiting signs of compact soil, the best option to treat soil compaction is a process known as aeration or core aeration. Aeration is a method of relieving compact soil by using a machine to pull tiny chunks of sod out of your lawn. This allows for air, water, and nutrients to flow back into the roots and encourages growth.
Aeration has the following benefits:
- Deeper, stronger root growth
- Thicker, healthier grass
- Grass grows much easier
- Fills in bald and thin patches in your yard
- A healthier, stronger yard
The Benefits of Overseeding Your Lawn
Overseeding is a term used a lot in lawn maintenance and is typically done after a yard has been aerated. Overseeding is simply spreading grass seed over your existing yard, usually with different types and strains of grass. This helps thicken up grass, fill in weak spots, and make your yard more resistant to threats from pests, drought, and disease.
If you are having a hard time getting your yard to respond to fertilizer, irrigation, and regular lawn maintenance then you may have to consider the fact that you have compacted soil. Aeration machines can be rented from local lawn care centers but if you do not know what you are doing you should leave it to a professional landscaping company.
Call The Pros At TLC Turf Masters
When combined, aerating and overseeding can significantly increase the health of your residential and commercial properties. At TLC Turf Masters we offer both aeration and overseeding services to enhance the appearance of your landscapes.