Why You Need to Aerate Your Georgia Lawn in the Fall

Homeowners put a lot of work into their lawns. It takes consistent mowing, proper watering, fertilization, and weeding to keep your lawn looking its best. We put so much work into having a great yard to enjoy during the warm weather months. That time spent enjoying your yard all summer can wreak havoc on your lawn if you don’t take the proper steps to repair it come fall. When the days stay warm, but the nights become cooler, it’s a great time to do some late-season lawn care to ensure your lawn will be just as enjoyable come next spring. For lawns with cool-season cultivars, such as fescue and ryegrass, fall is the best time to aerate your lawn as this is their peak growing season.

How Core Aeration Helps Your Georgia Lawn

The best reason to aerate your lawn is to alleviate soil compaction. When an aeration machine removes plugs of soil from the turf, this creates a means for water, nutrients, and oxygen to enter your lawn. Your yard takes a beating throughout the spring and summer. From repeated mowing to heavy foot traffic, thatch builds up and the soil becomes compacted. This makes it harder for your lawn to stay healthy as it can’t get its necessary amount of nutrients and oxygen to thrive.

Signs Your Lawn is in Need of Aeration

If your lawn shows the following signs, it might be time for core plug aeration.

  • Brown/dead patches
  • Spongy grass

Aeration Equipment

To aerate a lawn yourself, be sure to use a machine that removes a soil core and not simply equipment with tines or spikes. These proper pieces of equipment come in small, hand-held models all the way up to large, power-driven machines. Your local lawn and garden supply store will have equipment for rent or purchase.

Cool-Season vs. Warm-Season Grass

The optimal time to aerate your lawn will depend on whether it is cool-season or warm-season grass. Cool-season grasses will be more active during the cooler months, while warm-season grasses are more active during the warmer months. You only want to aerate your lawn when the grass is most active.

Types of Cool-Season Grass

  • Kentucky bluegrass
  • Tall Fescue
  • Creeping Red Fescue
  • Ryegrass

Types of Warm-Season Grass

  • Bermudagrass
  • Zoysiagrass
  • St. Augustine Grass

Why Fall is the Best Time to Aerate

Fall has ideal conditions for your grass to grow. When you aerate your cool-season turf in fall, it will help the grass return stronger and healthier than if aeration had been done during the spring or summer. Similarly, warm-season turf should be aerated in the spring. Aerating your lawn in the fall helps prepare your yard to recover quicker and flourish come spring. The ideal time to aerate your Georgia lawn this fall starts at the end of September up to a couple of weeks before the first frost.

Aeration and Overseeding

No core aeration job would be complete without overseeding. Overseeding is the process of introducing new types of grass seed to the existing turf. This allows you to fill in bare areas, thicken your grass and improve its overall health. Using a seed spreader, you can evenly apply seed and fertilizer to your lawn. Water your lawn after overseeding and continue to water your lawn consistently for a few weeks to help the seeds germinate. Focus on watering the top inch of soil by gently spraying your lawn 1-2 times a day. Once the grass starts to grow, you can return to a normal watering schedule.

Professional Core Aeration and Overseeding in South Metro Atlanta

Whether you have questions about your lawn or need help with core aeration and overseeding, contact Duncan’s Green Team today! Our experts are able to identify cool-season versus warm-season grasses to ensure your lawn is aerated at the optimal time of the year. To learn more about what we can do for your yard, or to schedule an appointment, give us a call at (770) 473-7700 or leave a message online today.

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