Why Aeration and De-Thatching Are Essential For A Beautiful Lawn

There really is nothing like a beautiful lawn. It’s a great place to relax, play, and just enjoy life. Most lawn owners, however, could probably somehow manage to live without the hard work of lawn maintenance. There’s a way to do that, and it’s just a little bit of advanced planning.

Aeration – Why it’s needed

Lawns often get impacted. The soil basically packs itself together, through gravity, water action, and time. The problem with that is that the impacted soil really does damage lawn roots. The very dense soil slows or even prevents roots growing. It can actually obstruct growth, and a formerly healthy lawn can look pretty sorry for itself.

The amount of damage, however, can get worse, pretty quickly. In cold weather, the soil contracts, compressing the roots. It can be like rock. In hot weather, the soil expands, but that also compresses the roots, and the soil, if it’s clay or some other types of soil, might as well be rock. If the soil cracks, the heat gets in and dries out the roots, as well. The lawn gets the worst of both scenarios.

Impacted soil also drives away soil microbes, worms, and other organisms which help release nutrients for the plants. That, naturally, doesn’t do the lawn any good, and basically starves it.

Aeration means literally breaking up the soil before it hardens, and letting in air to help nourish the roots and improve soil biology. Aeration is done systematically, allowing the soil to soften and become a more hospitable environment for the lawn’s roots.

The aeration process can be done manually, but only in a relatively small lawn. It’s hard work, and you need to be prepared to put in some time. For a large lawn, it’s a real epic job, done manually. Best practice with larger lawns is to get a contractor to do the job. It’s quicker, and much more efficient, particularly if you’re not familiar with aeration process.


The most likely way of spotting a thatch issue is when you see unusually dense clumps of grass. Thatches are what’s called “unhealthy growth habits”. A growth habit is a pattern of growth. For lawns, an expansive growth habit is good. A thatch, however, is the exact opposite of expansion.

In a thatched state, the lawn effectively overgrows itself, and the result is that it can actually suffocate itself. The roots look like pot-bound container plants. They’re competing for the same resources, meaning that they get less. The lawn can deteriorate very rapidly in this condition, and it looks terrible.

That’s when you need to de-thatch, before it gets worse. The best way to de-thatch is with special equipment. A machine which looks a bit like a lawn mower is used by lawn maintenance people to break up the thatch and return the lawn to healthy growth.

If you’re in the Westchester County part of New York and looking for help with your lawn, give us a call. We can fix any lawn problem. We’ll do your aeration and de-thatching for you and keep your lawn looking great.

Why Aeration and De-Thatching Are Essential For A Beautiful Lawn was last modified: January 29th, 2016 by Annalisa Ruggiero