All gardeners need to be aware that lawn aeration is an essential part of lawn maintenance. If your lawn area has heavy traffic or the soil is clay a type, then it needs to be done every 1 - 2 years based on the condition of the lawn area and soil. In case your soil type is a sandy earth then lawn aeration would not be a problem for you. The primary reason of aeration of lawns is to guarantee improvement in the aeration and drainage of the soil. Depending on the size of your lawn it is easy to do this manually with a ordinary steel garden fork or a specifically designed core aerator fork. You could hire a contractor to do the job for you, if you have a large lawn there are lawn aerators that are usually hired.
Early Spring or Autumn to aerate your soil since this is when increased aeration and better drainage and moisture infiltration will have the best result. The intend is to poke holes or spike the turf at even intervals by driving the fork vertically into the soil and withdrawing it and not levering it sideways. Core aerators have an advantage over spike forks because they actually dig a core of soil leaving a hole that can be plugged or filled with a mixture of organic compost and then a good watering.
Lawns that have a problem with thatch it is a good practice to leave the cores on the lawn, allowing them to work back into the grass. This is a great organic soil conditioner that will encourage microorganism activity in the soil. Soil aeration opens the soil and helps reduce compaction which improves water and fertilizer penetration. Core aeration is the best way to reduce thatch buildup and to decrease compaction of the soil in heavy traffic area. Whenever you use a core aerator soil plugs are deposited on the lawns surface. These plugs are actually the soil removed from the core and left on top they break down and restructure the soil all through the thatch layer which helps to modify the physical structure of the thatch, which raises soil microorganisms.
Soil aeration benefits; Decreases water and fertilizer requirements for vigorous turf Enhanced heat and drought stress tolerance. Helps with water puddling and runoff. Improves lawn thickness, vigor, and on the whole the health of the plant Improves penetration for fertilizer into the root zone. Increases air penetration into soil which increases soil microbes. Helps thatch breakdown. The most effective way of relieving a lawn of thatch and soil compaction.