Many lawns suffer from surface and deep compaction, wet climatic conditions make compaction easier to achieve. Compacted soils do not allow water to move through the soil profile at the correct rate. Grass plants need oxygen at the roots in order to survive. Compacted soils have few air pore spaces and therefore not allowing the grass plants to breathe or allow root penetration. Relieving the compaction through a good aeration program allows for better root development and overall healthier soil and grass plants.
Heavy used gardens that have children playing on them suffer from compaction more other gardens. But what you will find with family lawns is that the compaction is normally isolated locations, i.e. where a swing is located or where a portable goal is located. Easily rectified, relieve the compaction and over-seed – job done.
There are many forms of aerating a lawn, the most basic is to use a garden fork, effective if done correctly but is time consuming. The most common way is to either use a solid tine or a hollow tine. A solid tine is a basic spike entering the ground and coming out at a slightly different angle that it penetrated, a hollow tine is a hollow tube that removes a small core of soil each time it penetrates the ground. For larger areas that require deeper penetration we use a tractor mounted Verti-drain.