Why Do We Aerate Lawns?

I’m a little wary, not to mention weary, of saying Spring is here. But…er…it seems to actually be here now. Honest guv. And our lawns are looking glum and in need, of more than ‘a bit of TLC’. More like a long spell of major pampering and a grovelling written apology followed by a good portion of obsequiousness, love and affection culminating possibly, in breakfast in bed.

Basically the same set of treatments I have to offer my wife if I’ve stayed out too late after saying ‘I’ll be home in ten minutes after I’ve finished this one.’  Ahem.

However. Breakfast in bed is not easy to organise for a large expanse of grass whereas aeration is very easy to arrange. See what I did there? Seamless segue? No. Oh well, suit yourselves.

An oft-asked question this. ‘Why do we areate lawns?’ I have in the past been known to answer this question with some glib response like  ‘How would you like it if people played football on you, ran all over you, jumped up and down on you, ignored you all winter and then just gave you a haircut?’. But no-one ever understands what I mean and they look at me in a manner that suggests they are on the verge of calling for help. So.

The point is that lawns can get compacted, clogged up and basically in need of space to breathe and feed and just a cut every now and then throughout the season won’t help much.

So, aerating and its more exotic cousin, scarifying, are definitely practices you should learn more about. You can find out about scarifying by looking at these pages on our knowledge base, MowHow and in more depth here, again on MowHow.

More and more customers, reading and learning about the trials and tribulations of the average lawn, are starting to think about scarifying and aerating and buying the specialised, but very affordable, garden machinery that can carry out these tasks.

A build-up of dead and dying material under the lawn’s surface can stop water and nutrients getting into the soil and reaching the roots of the grass,  causing disease or major problems with the lawn. Also, heavy use can do the same. Heavy clay type soils can be particularly prone to these problems and compaction can also affect drainage.

It is often easy to tell if your lawn has problems like this. The lawn might feel over-bouncy and sponge-like or there may be brown patches or it may be very thin in patches. Possibly water sits too long on the surface and puddles, meaning it isn’t being absorbed, perhaps if you have a slope you will see water running off. All these can be signs of compaction.

So the answer is almost definitely aerating. This process, penetrating the turf and soil with spikes or tines to open up the ground can enable the lawn to breathe and heal itself, help it to absorb more water and nutrients into the roots and soil into the soil leaving you with a healthier, greener and more lush looking lawn.

And when should you do it? Well, depending on the dampness of your soil, anytime soon, early and late spring are both good times, as is the Autumn. Most experts seem to agree that it should be done at least once a year.

There are a number of types and you can see a selection of good quality aerators here for varying budgets and needs. You can also see some more information on why aerating is useful here. 

Aerators come in all shapes and sizes. There are mains electric versions, petrol powered models or even aerators that can be towed behind your ride-on mower or lawn tractor.

There are, in general, two styles. Solid Tine (or spiked) and hollow tine. You can find more information on these here.

Einhell GE-SA scarifier
Two In One VALUE: Einhell GE-SA 1335P scarifier/aerator

There are also combination aerators and scarifiers, which carry out both these two important tasks. One of our most popular combi machines is the Einhell GE-SA 1335P Petrol Combi Scarifier / Aerator. an amazing value petrol powered machine that is one of our most popular, with some great 4/5 star reviews

Easy to start…starts well..‘, ‘Excellent Product… very easy to operate… The result seen on my lawns after use was very satisfying…I would recommend this machine to anyone with a minimum size garden. I’m a very satisfied owner.’, ‘Good Value’…’a great little machine for the money’, Great machine…’

Available with FREE delivery and FREE oil at an amazingly low price of £499.95, this machine is just one of our many great value aerators and scarifiers.

Have a look at this blog for more information about scarifying and one of the best scarifiers available,

If you would like to know more about aerators, scarifiers or any other garden equipment, our team of friendly product experts are ready to take your call. You can call us on 0345 4588 905 (9am-5pm Mon-Fri & 10am-4pm Sat) Our team have a well-deserved reputation for impartial, helpful advice.

Honest advice, no sales pitch. Phoned them up and spoke to someone who gave me advice about the difference between models and helped me make my own mind up without sales pressure. I am delighted with my purchase and it has made my work so much easier. The wood burner will never go hungry again! B. Garside (TRUSTPILOT)

We know MowDirect offer keen prices but with this remarkable back-up and honest approach to customers’, as I experienced, somehow words like ‘well done’, ‘fantastic’ and even ‘wow’ seem totally inadequate. Perhaps I should describe their attitude to customers in true Brit style: TOTALLY BLOODY BRILLIANT.‘ S. Elliot (TRUSTPILOT)

Enjoy your garden.    Drew Hardy








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