It’s October here in Georgia. Time for pumpkin spice lattes, corn mazes, hayrides, scary Halloween movies, and game day football! But just because summer is slowly closing its door does not mean you should start neglecting your lawn care. To get the dream lawn you’ve always wanted, you need to do than just practice proper mowing, fertilizing, and weed control. Sometimes your grass needs more. After a long summer of excessive foot traffic, heat, drought, and overuse, your grass can contain a build-up of thatch, and your soil may be compacted.
What is Compacted Soil?
Compacted soil occurs when the particles of the soil are squeezed together so tightly that they reduce the pore space between them. The reduction in pore space prevents much-needed oxygen, water, and nutrients from getting to your roots. This can cause your roots to become dehydrated and malnourished. Over time they will weaken, attract weeds, pests, and cause your grass to die.
When this happens, your grass usually starts to thin out and turn brown. It often looks tired and dried out. Your first instinct may be to turn on the sprinkler. Unfortunately, by this point, it’s usually too late. Other signs of compacted soil include spongy, squishy grass. This is typically a sign of too much thatch build-up. Thatch is a layer of roots, dead grass, and other grass clippings that build-up and sit on top of your soil. Like, compacted soil, thatch blocks sunlight, water, and other essential nutrients from getting to your grass.
What Are Some of the Other Signs of Compacted Soil
- Water runs off or pools in areas of your yard
- You have bare, thin, or patchy areas of grass
- Stunted growth of plants
- Bare dirt where nothing including weeds will grow
Does Your Lawn Pass the Screwdriver Test?
The screwdriver test is an easy way to test the moisture level of your soil. Just stick a screwdriver into the ground. If it pulls out easily and the soil is stuck to it, your soil is moist and clean. If it is hard to push through, your soil probably needs core aeration.
My Georgia Lawn Has Compacted Soil, Now What Do I Do?
The best way to combat compacted soil is through a service called core aeration. Core Aeration is a process by which a machine perforates small holes in your ground and pulls up hundreds of tiny plugs to redistribute the turf across your lawn. Doing this allows much-needed oxygen, water, and fertilizer to penetrate the grass and get to its roots. Core aeration can be done by using a sharp stick or with special boots. It is time-consuming, however, and you risk damaging your lawn further and hurting your roots. At Picture Perfect Lawn Care and Landscape, we provide core aeration services and take care of all the encompassing work for you. Our tried and true method will ensure your lawn can absorb nutrients properly and able to bounce back in the spring. Core aeration has many different advantages. We list some of them for you below.
Benefits of Core Aeration
- Reduction in soil compaction
- Deeper, stronger root growth
- Thicker, healthier grass
- Grass grows much easier
- Improves water and fertilizer intake
- Eliminates water runoff and puddling
- Improves your lawn’s resistance to drought
- Fills in bald and thin patches in your yard
- An overall healthier, stronger yard
When Is the Best Time to Aerate?
The best time to aerate depends on the climate where you live and your grass type. Aeration should always be done during the growing season of your grass to heal and fill in any holes after the soil plugs are removed. Warm-season grasses such as bermudagrass, centipede grass, St. Augustinegrass, or zoysiagrass should be aerated in the late spring or early summer. For cool-season grasses such as ryegrass, Kentucky bluegrass, and fescues, they should be aerated in the early spring or fall. Our expert crews at Picture Perfect Lawn Care perform aeration on warm-season grasses in the spring. To prepare your lawn for winter, we provide aeration services in the early fall months as well. This method will ensure that your grass can absorb nutrients properly throughout the summer and stay healthy to come back next spring.
Prepare Your Lawn for the Winter With Aeration by the Professionals at Picture Perfect Lawn and Landscape
As it is October, we are in the fall season right now, so contact us to learn more about and schedule your aeration service. Rather talk to a live person? Pick up the phone and call us at 678-771-6655. Get to know Picture Perfect more intimately by following us and liking us on our Facebook page.