|Soil compaction caused by wear can have a negative effect on our turf. Soil compaction leads to smaller pore spaces within the soil that eventually results into both a reduced amount of air held in the soil, restricted airfl ow and reduced water infi ltration into the soil.|
These results of soil compaction damage a lawn’s health. Reduced air levels and restricted air circulation in the soil mean that the grass roots are less able to take up oxygen. Reduced soil pore space also leads to reduced levels of nutrient uptake from the soil. Oxygen is a vital input into a plant’s growth cycle. If the ability of water to infi ltrate the soil is limited by soil compaction then the water will not infi ltrate as deeply into the soil as normal. This means the lawn’s roots will not develop as deeply and so the lawn will be more at risk from drought and other environmental stresses. Soil compaction also means there is greater resistance against the roots as they try to develop to greater depths. Poor development of roots below the soil will result in a poor lawn condition above the soil.
There are other factors besides soil compaction that may give us reason to aerate the turfgrass. If our lawn contains a considerable build up of thatch then we can use core aeration to help break down the thatch. This process occurs as the cores of soil that are left on the lawn surface by core aeration introduce soil microorganisms into the thatch layer. These micro-organisms break down the layer of thatch and return nutrients to the soil.