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Aeration and Overseeding Guide for Lawns (2022)

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One of the most significant false impressions of yard management among homeowners is that left on its own, grass will expand as well as generate a complete rich lawn naturally. Unfortunately, that is not the situation. If you do desire that full uniform look, you will certainly need to take some actions to attain it. Both overseeding and also aeration can assist obtain the preferred results. With each other these methods help to develop an attractive thick, environment-friendly, and lush grass, as well as in today’s aeration and overseeding guide, I’ll clarify why these two projects are a suit made in paradise.

Whether you intend to create a new yard or renew yard adhering to a severe summer or wintertime, investing a weekend break on aeration as well as overseeding your grass can bring your turf back to life.

In today’s guide you can check out these techniques and learn how to plan for and also perform this weekend break task. This yard improvement can quickly change your backyard right into the best on the block.

About Aeration and Overseeding (and why they work so well together)

If you’ve never taken on a yard remodelling project in the past, aeration and also overseeding can offer some significant difficulties if taken care of the wrong means. So I’ll also go over some usual blunders people make (and also exactly how you can avoid them).

Let’s obtain right into it!

A great area to start is by discussing what aeration and also overseeding are and why these grass projects function so well together.

Regarding Aeration and also Overseeding

Aeration is the process of de-compacting the soil in your yard by reducing small openings into it. These openings enable oxygen, water, and also fertilizer to reach your turf’s origins, which reinforces your turf. Overseeding is a procedure for boosting your backyard by adding fresh turf seed to your existing grass to thicken and revitalize your turfgrass. While these are 2 separate techniques for boosting your yard and yard, when combined into a solitary weekend project, these two jobs work in consistency and also can help improve the health and wellness of your grass for the next several years. The holes produced by aeration permit yard seeds as well as starter plant food to attain better dirt get in touch with, which boosts results.

A lot more About Overseeding

Overseeding is the act of adding brand-new grass seed right into an existing patch of dirt without turning it over and starting over again.

About Overseeding a Lawn

In other words, you won’t require to eliminate your existing grass. You’re just including new lawn seed to revitalize an existing grass, enlarge it, and fill in slim or bare patches in your lawn.

It is a fairly easy method for completing open places in your yard as well as achieving a fuller appearance. Personally, I overstep my grass once every 1-2 years.

Much More About Core Aeration

While there are several factors you might freshen a lawn, generally this task is to loosen soil as well as eliminate compaction.

Aeration damages up layers of soil by reducing holes right into your existing grass. This permits oxygen and water to flow into the soil and also stimulates your turf to grow bigger, extra healthy and balanced root systems.

How Lawn Aeration Works

Roots expand deeper in loose dirt. This, in turn, makes the yard plant stronger as well as your grass will certainly be thicker as well as much healthier as an outcome.

Core aeration is the excellent means to support your existing yard and also build a grass that boasts resistant grass. A healthy and balanced grass will certainly crowd out weeds naturally without dependence on damaging herbicides.

Exactly how (and also why) to Use Aeration as well as Overseeding Together

While both aeration and overseeding are different techniques to improve your yard, they can (and ought to) be used with each other to create a rich, lively grass.

Overseeding promptly after core aeration enables outstanding dirt contact for your new grass seed as it falls under the holes you made in your turf.

How to Use Aeration and Overseeding Together

This boosts germination price and you all at once strengthen existing grass plants while thickening your lawn with healthy and balanced brand-new plants.

It’s the ideal combination, as well as these projects can be completed together in a day.

Picking the very best Time to Aerate and also Overseed Your Lawn

In a lot of landscape design and gardening jobs, timing is whatever. And also that’s true for aeration and overseeding

But there’s not a one-size-fits-all” best time to aerate and also overseed your grass. Where you live, as well as the type of grass you have in your lawn will determine when you ought to tackle these tasks.

Overseeding and Aeration

This is due to the fact that you wish to give the turf time to expand and also reinforce before harsher climate condition get here, so you intend to freshen and also overseed your lawn right before your lawn has the suitable growing conditions.

Those problems greatly depend upon your geographic location as well as just how seasonal adjustments affect your turf.

That stated, right here are the best times for aeration and also overseeding most lawns:

When to Aerate as well as Overseed Warm-Season Grasses

If you stay in a southerly climate, your grass is possibly made up of warm-season grasses. For you, the best time to freshen is during the late spring, and you’ll intend to overseed your yard at the exact same time.

This is because warm-season turfs flourish as well as grow best during the heat of summer. By performing these lawn improvement jobs in late spring your seed starting will certainly be established simply in time for their optimal growing problems … and also they can flourish as well as create deep origins throughout the heat of summertime.

When to Aerate as well as Overseed Cool-Season Grasses

If you reside in a north climate with four unique seasons and snowfall over the winter season, your lawn is most likely comprised of trendy season turfs. These turfs grow in the cooler months of the year (Spring as well as the Fall) and will commonly have a hard time to keep their eco-friendly shade throughout the dog days of summertime.

For you, early springtime (an okay time) or early loss (the optimal time) aeration and also overseeding will certainly provide the best results, with very early fall my recommendation.

In spring your window for success is really slim. Too early and the soil will be as well cold for yard to sprout. Far too late, and your plants will not have the time they need to create the root system that will certainly maintain them via the warm and drought of summertime, as well as might battle to compete with annual weeds.

Autumn is best for great season yards because annual weeds have actually faded, dirt temperature levels are warm from the warm summer season, and the growing conditions are excellent (amazing, wet). By the time winter season comes your yard will certainly be thick and healthy and balanced with strong origins, prepared to do well in the springtime.

Freshen Your Lawn Before You Overseed

If you are attempting to bring your lawn back to life and also desire a fuller and also much healthier lawn, you possibly currently understand about overseeding

Aerate Your Lawn Before You Overseed

Still, many individuals don’t realize that aerating the lawn prior to overseeding is a win-win. I recommend it to nearly every property owner wishing to enhance their lawn’s look!


  • Step 1 : Provide enough water to the dirt as this makes aeration much easier. Rainfall can do the task for you. Otherwise, water the yard a day prior to you intend to aerate your lawn.
  • Action 2 : Get to recognize your aeration machine as well as its restrictions. Some will only cover portions of the lawn so you might require to pass over the same area numerous times.
  • Action 3 : Sometimes you will run into dirt plugs as you are passing the aeration maker. While it is simple to ignore these, do not. Instead, damage up these globs of soil to guarantee aeration can be much more uniform.

You can not aerate your yard correctly without machinery, specifically an existing large patch of lawn. There are three different kinds of aeration equipments offered:

  • [Good] Spike Aeration: Puts openings in the soils by making use of a spike. This can function well for lightly compacted lawns, but is not my recommended method.
  • [Better] Cutting Aeration: Usually features rotating blades, this kind of machine slices through turf, cutting deep into the soil to give better accessibility to air as well as water.
  • [Best] Core/Plug Aerators: One of the most common, as well as the best, this aeration device is a core/plug aerator. It uses rows of smaller spikes to aid eliminate plugs of soil as well as bringing them to the surface where they can break down normally in your lawn, leaving behind round holes in your turf.

If you intend to following aeration, I recommend that you mow your lawn pretty short previous to starting these improvements. This will certainly stop your existing grass from growing as well tall as well quickly (as well as shielding out your brand-new plants).

Overseed After Aeration

When aeration is full on an existing lawn, begin overseeding within 48 hours and also after that water the yard lightly to make sure great dirt contact with your new seed.

Overseed After Aeration

During this time around window, seed as well as fertilizer have a better chance of getting much deeper into the aeration holes, which is what you desire.

Preparation is virtually as crucial as the overseeding itself. Cut your current lawn a little shorter than normal as well as remove any shavings left.

Now it’s time to seed:


  • Step 1 : Check the seed you have selected to know the advised rate of overseeding I like to go a little larger than the recommended price so I’m certain to get a good outcome. 1. 25x the maker’s suggestion seems to be an excellent number in my experience. Make use of an online grass measurement tool to determine just how much seed you’ll require for different areas of your yard.
  • Action 2 : Spread the seed around your yard (either manually or using a lawn spreader). Prevent seeding on a gusty day to supply better possibility of also circulation.
  • Step 3 : I like to make use of a quick-release starter fertilizer that’s high in phosphorous to advertise root growth. I normally have this set accessible , so it’s what I use, yet Espoma’s organic Bio-Tone item ( Amazon links is really excellent also. The natural slow-release plant foods can function alright in the location of a starter fertilizer.
  • Action 4 : While this is not essential, adding a thin layer of screened compost (around 1/4 of an inch thick) over the yard can aid feed your soil, maintain seed damp, as well as boost your results. It’s a step I suggest, yet it is not 100% essential to obtain an excellent outcome from this project.
  • Step 5 : Seeds need water, and also they require it routinely and at the correct time of day. Purpose to maintain the dirt wet with a couple of light waterings per day for a week. I have a guide on this topic right here.
  • Action 6 : The first time you trim your lawn, bag your cuttings, after that return to normal lawn upkeep afterwards. Make sure that your freshly seeded yard gets at the very least 1 inch of water weekly. When your plants are established you no more have to bag your clippings– simply mulch them into your grass.

Usual Mistakes (and how to avoid them)

Family member newbies to grass administration might discover some difficulties when freshening as well as overseeding their grass. In a lot of instances, issues emerge since of some easy mistakes.

Common Aeration and Overseeding Mistakes (and how to avoid them)

Below are the most usual errors made when taking on an aeration as well as overseeding task, with tips on exactly how to acknowledge and also avoid them.

Picking the Wrong Equipment

In numerous ways, your outcomes will just be like the devices you make use of. One common instance is attempting to stay clear of acquiring or leasing a aeration device to prepare your grass.

Low-cost alternatives include utilizing a pitchfork (can work for small areas) or getting cleats with spikes on the base of them (like these on Amazon .

Using the Wrong Equipment is a Common Mistake When Aerating and Overseeding Your Lawn

Neither of these choices does the job well, and can even make the dirt even worse by condensing your further.

Do on your own a support and also rent out a core aerator for 4 hours or for a day. It’s much less than $100 as well as it’s cash well spent.

Using the Aeration Machine Incorrectly

Even if you pick the proper aeration maker, you may still not be able to run it correctly.

Your entire aeration and overseeding journey will certainly more than instead rapidly unless you obtain knowledgeable about the tools you want to make use of.

Improper Operation of the Core Aerator Machine

One of the most common kind of aeration machine is a walk-behind, which may appear basic sufficient. Nonetheless, due to the fact that they are heavy to press you could end up missing some components of the turf, or tearing apart your yard when turning the maker.

Pay interest when choosing up the equipment and also ask inquiries of the pro you’re leasing it from. See some on-line videos in advance, as well as take the initial pass with the equipment over a part of your yard that is the least noticeable from the street in instance you make an error.

Picking the Wrong Time of Year

We have actually currently covered the best time of the year to aerate and overseed your yard, however some people will still do this job at the wrong season and also be let down with the outcomes.

It can be difficult to wait when you’re all set to deal with a big yard remodelling, but don’t waste your time and financial investment because you were restless. Your yard isn’t going anywhere.

Rough wintertime and hot summers will create troubles for seed development if you overseed later on than you ought to in the autumn or spring.

In addition, you ought to stay clear of aerating dirt when it is too completely dry since it will certainly be harder for the equipment to appear and the plugs will not come out of the branches easily.

Neglecting the Lawn After Aeration as well as Overseeding

This appears like a no brainer, however you would certainly be shocked the number of people undergo the job of aerating and overseeding and after that simply don’t follow-through with watering their yard in the weeks complying with.

A Common Mistake with Overseeding and Aeration is Not Following Through and Watering Your Lawn Afterwards

Unfortunately, those seeds you grew are not magical. They won’t grow overnight, as well as they won’t expand without regular water.

The great information is simply making certain the dirt covering the seeds is kept moist is a great start for driving development. If you do that and also absolutely nothing else, you’ll probably obtain great results.

Hurrying to Mow

One of one of the most common errors when laying seed is to believe regular grass mowing can return to right away. This is particularly true when overseeding, due to the fact that your existing turf will certainly maintain expanding (and also may grow faster with the extra water).

Some individuals make the error of remaining to cut their lawn regular or more frequently and become confused when they didn’t get the outcomes they wished for when overseeding

Mowing Too Soon

This happens because the seeds require time to establish roots that are strong enough to hold up against the pressure of the lawn mower’s blade. Trim as well early and also the lawn mower will certainly just tear your young seed starting out of the soil as well as eliminate them.

I generally advise that you avoid cutting the lawn for 2 to 4 weeks after overseeding You desire your plants (not your existing turf) to reach at least 3 inches in elevation. You ought to trim at about 2. 5 inches at that time, landing your cuttings.

This will certainly promote the development of the new seedlings, as well as set you up for success.

Pursuing Weeds

Weeds are a problem and also can trigger a great deal of damage to your grass. At some time, weed reduction needs to be at the top of your order of business. Yet that time is not right after freshening as well as overseeding

Whether you make use of chemical herbicides or natural options, weed management can damage expanding seeds and also brand-new grass. It takes a while after overseeding before you can deal with weeds once again, normally around 4 or 5 mows.

Drawing the periodic weed by hand should still be alright. However just live with any kind of brand-new weeds that grow throughout the days when your new grass is young as well as susceptible. You can resolve those issue areas later.

Selecting the Wrong Seed

Choosing the right seed for your yard is an art form. If you do not have the gift (or are simply tired of reading online testimonials where half individuals recommend it’s the perfect seed and also half individuals recommend it’s the most awful seed on the planet), read my guide on picking the best turf seed for overseeding

Using the Wrong Type of Seed (or expired seed) is a Common Mistake to Avoid When Aerating and Overseeding

If you can stretch your budget to a premium turf seed alternative, you’re extra most likely to get a younger and much healthier seed. Purchasing at a box store might be practical, but a great deal of that seed has been resting there for many years.

Not Following Seeding Rate

When you get seeds, the packet will inform you the seeding rate. This is a demand and also not a recommendation that aid you recognize just how much seed your grass requires.

By following the standards, you can make certain an even spread out that enables the seeds to expand in a healthy and balanced way.

As I mentioned earlier in this write-up, I usually use concerning 1. 25 to the suggested overseeding price since I enjoy a truly dense lawn. I likewise use an on-line tool to determine my yard square footage and get the seed amount right for my lawn.

But following the producer’s recommendation will generally offer you a great outcome.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and agriculture expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of people make their yards lush and thick.