Five Tools for Aerating Your Lawn
From: DK Books - Lawns
Best performed lightly in spring or in fall, lawn aeration is necessary to relieve soil compaction and to allow air to circulate around the grass roots and at the base of the leaf blades. There are various tools that can be used to achieve this, from the simple garden fork to mechanical aerators that are ideal for use over large areas.
Soil compaction can be relieved by pushing the solid tines of a fork into the lawn down to a depth of about 3 inches (8 cm) and wiggling the fork slightly to widen the holes before continuing this process every 4 inches (10 cm).
This special tool is used in the same way as the fork and using the same spacing, but it has hollow tines, meaning that cores of soil are removed, which should be filled in with good quality top-dressing.
This tool removes leaves and any thatch at the base of the grass blades, allowing air to circulate and helping water and fertilizer to penetrate the root zone.
Combine a stroll in the garden with aerating the lawn: these strap-on soles have long spikes on the underside that break up soil compaction as you walk.
A useful aeration alternative, the slitter is run over the grass and its sharp blades penetrate through the turf. It lightly trims the grass roots, allowing air to enter the root