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How To Prep For Aeration & Seeding

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Are you ready for your upcoming aeration and seeding?

So you've scheduled your aeration and seeding with us. Awesome! We're so happy that you've chosen Top Turf to lead you in your lawn care journey. What are the next steps to ensure that your aeration and seeding is successful and results in a beautiful lawn? While we do most of the work for you, we do ask that you do a few things in order to prep your lawn for us. Read on to find out more!


Here's Why We Aerate & Seed Tall Fescue Every Year...

Just in case you were wondering!

Before we get started and just to clear the air, let's make sure that we're on the same page with what aeration and seeding is, and how it works. That will help you understand why you need to help us out with some minor prep work. Here's a crash course to review–

  • Aeration is performed in the late summer, early fall season when the weather begins to cool, and ground temperatures are cooler which is a favorable growing condition for cool-season grass, such as Tall Fescue.
  • Core Aeration relieves soil compaction by removing grass plugs that are approximately ½ to ¾ inches in diameter, 2-6 inches apart and 2-4 inches deep.
  • Tall Fescue does not spread or reproduce itself, so you must over-seed every year to keep your lawn looking full, thick, and healthy.
  • When your lawn is thicker and healthier, you will see fewer weeds because the lawn will crowd them out.
  • Core Aeration will increase water and nutrient flow through your soil to your grass-roots.
  • Seeds can germinate more efficiently and effectively invigorating the roots and stimulating growth.
  • Thatch accumulation is decreased therefore increasing water absorption into the roots and your watering is more effective and efficient.

Clear as mud? Feel free to check out our Aeration & Seeding website page for more detailed information on the process if you still have some questions! Otherwise, we'll go ahead and dive into you how to prep your lawn so you're ready for us.


3 Ways To Prep For Aeration & Seeding

#1 Mow Your Lawn At The Lowest Setting!

thatch in lawn

Let's get rid of that thatch and dead grass...

In the weeks leading up to your aeration and seeding, you will want to cut your lawn at the lowest setting each time you cut your lawn. We suggest 2 times maybe even one time. Just make sure you get all the dead thatch up and out of your lawn. The less thatch you have the easier it is for the seed to germinate.

Mowing and raking will help pick up any dead thatch that has accumulated and hopefully clear out any dead spots. By doing this, you prevent extra thatch from being leftover on your grass.

If you don't have enough time before your scheduled aeration to get up all your dead thatch, just make sure to bag your clippings now until you aerate and seed...Remember: Excess thatch will prohibit seeds from germinating effectively.

  1. This will help the seed reach the soil easier rather than rest on top of thatch or other grass.
  2. Remember... you will not be able to mow your lawn for up to 4 weeks after your aeration and seeding, as this is the germination period of the seed. You want it to remain unbothered to have the best chance of rooting and growing. Because you can't mow, any existing grass can overgrow, so cutting it that extra bit shorter will help keep it tamed while you allow the new seeds to germinate.
🌱 Pro Tip: Bag your clippings. Clippings left on the lawn cause excess thatch buildup and inhibit the growth of new fescue seeds.


#2 Water... Water... Water


Water your lawn to moisten the soil

You will want to keep your soil moist before your scheduled aeration and seeding appointment, so the aeration machines will be able to pull cores out of the soil more efficiently and effectively. If the soil is too hard the aerators will not pull cores correctly and in some cases can bounce across the lawn not pulling any core plugs at all. However, be careful not to overwater because a soggy lawn will also cause problems and the aerators can sink.

🌱 Pro Tip: Water just until you can easily insert a screwdriver several inches into your soil. That's a great rule of thumb!


#3 Mark Your Lawn With Flags!

flags for marking your lawn

Mark your lawn for any underground or hidden items that can be damaged

Aeration machines are powerful and have the potential to run over and damage items that are underground. Prior to your aeration, please take the time to walk through your lawn and mark out your items using any kind of marking item so that our tech can see them. Here are a few examples of items you should mark–

  • Sprinkler heads
  • Irrigation system lines
  • Invisible dog fences
  • Hoses
  • Cables
  • Wires
  • Pipes

Basically, any underground or hard-to-see item that is less than 6 inches below the surface of your lawn that can potentially be damaged if our aerator machine runs over them. That's why we need your help to clearly mark them so we can actively avoid them and make sure that we do not damage any of your property.

🌱 Pro Tip: We recommend using marking flags with bright colors to mark your lawn. They will be easy to see and maneuver around when we are aerating your lawn, and they are inexpensive. They are available to purchase at your local home improvement or hardware store, as well as online for under $5!


For more information, check out other Aeration & Seeding material:

How to care for your lawn after your Aeration and Seeding to get the best germination!

Don't have an irrigation system? No worries... check out our solution!


You're all set!

We're overjoyed that you chose Top Turf for your lawn care needs. With just a few minutes of your time to lower your mower blade, set your sprinklers to wet the soil, and mark your lawn for hidden objects, we can work together to make your lawn delightfully green. Remember those three things, and we're on our way to a great lawn! For more lawn care tips and more, please view and subscribe to our blog here!

As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions!

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