Fall is officially here in Washington, and that means it’s time to carve up the pumpkins, break out the scary decorations and work on this year’s costumes! But don’t let the cooler temperatures and shorter days fool you. Now is not the time to forget about your lawn care. After a summer full of activities, your lawn is probably facing fatigue. Summer heat, drought, excessive foot traffic from play, and smoke build-up from the recent wildfires can cause even the most well-maintained lawns to need tender loving care. If your grass is starting to show bare patches, is spongy in some areas, or seems to have an overabundance of pests, you may have excess thatch or compacted soil.
What is Compacted Soil?
Compacted soil occurs when the particles of the soil are squeezed together so tightly, they reduce the pore space between them. Often this happens because of too much thatch, a layer of roots, dead grass shoots, and other grass clippings that sit on top of the soil. Compact soil stops water, air, and essential nutrients from permeating your roots. It can also reduce water infiltration and drainage. Thatch also helps to make a suitable home for insects and mold. To determine if your lawn has compacted soil, look for these telltale signs:
Does Your Lawn Pass the Screwdriver Test?
The screwdriver test is an easy way to test the moisture level of your soil. Just stick a screwdriver into the ground. If it pulls out easily and the soil is stuck to it, your soil is moist and clean. If it is hard to push through, your soil probably needs aeration.
What Can You Do About Compacted Soil?
There are several things you can do to help your compacted soil regain its root strength. At Colonial Lawn and Garden, we perform a service called dethatching. Dethatching helps to break up thatch. We use a power rake to thin out the excessive layer of thatch, allowing fertilizer, air, water, and other nutrients to penetrate the ground and reach your lawn’s roots. A second service that we provide is core aeration. Core aeration is a process where a machine pulls plugs of soil out from your ground, creating holes throughout and redistributing soil across your turf. Aeration has many benefits, including breaking up excessive thatch. These include:
Topdressing and Overseeding
After having your lawn aerated, it is primed and ready for top dressing and overseeding. Topdressing is the lawn process of adding a thin layer of material over grass. It can improve soil biology, reduce lawn stress, and act as a long-term fertilizer. Colonial Lawn and Garden uses an organic material that provides a customized blend of nutrients and helps to smooth out your ground surface. If your lawn is still looking a little thin, we will follow up this service with overseeding. This will introduce newer species and varieties of grasses while filling in the bare and patchy spots. Overseeding can help improve the look of a fatigued yard dramatically by warding off any lawn diseases and pests, and by enhancing your grass’s appearance by making it thicker and augmenting its green color.
Get All of These Great Lawn Services from Colonial Lawn & Garden
Colonial Lawn & Garden will help you to keep your yard looking its best. We provide top of the line aeration, topdressing, dethatching and overseeding services to help your over-stressed lawn bounce back from summer. Fall is the best time to invest in these lawn care services because your grass is less likely to spread weeds around. Having your lawn aerated in the fall will also promote stronger root growth and have your turf ready to thrive in the spring. For more information on any of the above services or to request a free estimate, reach out to us online or give us a call. If you are in the Yakima area, call us at 509-966-1655. If you are in the tri-city area, call us at 509-371-1655. For more tips and ideas, check out our other blog articles. To get to know us more intimately, follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook.