Best Time to Aerate and Overseed the Lawn in Iowa

Feb 04, 2022
Best Time to Aerate and Overseed the Lawn in Iowa

If your grass could talk, the things it would say. “Can somebody keep an eye on the neighbors’ new collie?” “Anybody know tomorrow’s weather forecast?” Our bet for a lawn’s likely first words are, “Anybody got a glass or few gallons of water?”

Our lawns are more than just the scenic landscaping of our home and property. They are the ground we are raised and live, where our children take their first steps outdoors and learn to love nature, and the backdrops of some of our best backyard family memories, from family ball games, barbecues, get-togethers and stargazing.

Like anyone or anything, lawns need care to stay healthy, lush, thick and green year-round. Techniques like overseeding and aeration can almost immediately greatly improve and ensure your lawn’s health throughout the seasons and year. The goal of lawn aeration and overseeding is to strengthen your full lawn.

How Does Aeration and Overseeding Improve Grass Health?

These techniques are about more than just good looks and having your yard look like a Better Homes & Gardens Magazine cover. Yearly aeration and overseeding benefits your lawn by:

  • Enhancing appearance and color
  • Increasing disease and insect resistance
  • Improving weed resistance

What are Aeration & Overseeding Exactly?

Aeration uproots compacted soil, enabling water, air and other life-giving lawn nutrients to reach roots with ease. Aeration penetrates the soil, creating small holes about an inch in diameter. This moisture penetration brings in the good stuff, thus, stimulating root growth. Aeration also improves penetration of fertilizers and other lawn products, and assists in the rate of thatch decomposition.

Overseeding, the practice of seeding over your existing lawn, spreads grass seed throughout the yard to encourage new grass growth. Through aeration, compacted soil and thatch is removed, giving roots a clear lifeline to everything they need to grow. Overseeding after aeration ensures there is plenty of grass growing to cover the lawn and fill in bare or worn patches.

Together, aeration and overseeding strengthen your entire lawn. The beautiful results of these trusted lawn healthcare techniques is a a gorgeous lawn that is lush, full and green. With a healthy, thick uniform bed of grass, it’s harder for weeds to take hold. This, in fold, makes your job of taking care of your yard easier as well.

But aeriation and overseeding, like any lawn care applications, aren’t magic. Aeration and overseeding work best when they are applied at the same time. This leads us to the million dollar question.

When is the Best Time to Aerate and Overseed Your Lawn?

“Every lawn should be aerated. However, not every lawn needs to be overseeded. If your lawn is experiencing seasonal thinning or damaged from weather events or foot traffic, then overseeding is suggested. Thick and lush lawns typically do not need to be overseeded,” explains Devin LeBeau, owner of Creekside Turf Managment in Marion, Iowa.

For the optimal results, aerate right before overseeding. The mission of aeration is to break up soil and allow it to breathe. This enables new grass to penetrate deeper into the soil and have increased access to more nutrients.

Living in the American Midwest, home of often unpredictable weather, the best time for Iowans to aerate your lawn is August or September (late summer or early fall). Aeration and overseeding at summer’s end gives grass the opportunity to develop strong roots. This improves its ability to grow strong and stand up to pests and harsh weather, including droughts. Late summer and early fall’s warm soils, cool nights and dying annual weeds make it the undisputed best time of the year to aerate and seed your lawn.

Aeration and overseeding in late summer or early fall bring fresh life to lawns, and a healthy vibrant green look to your yard, and the land your family calls home.

For more information, contact Creekside Turf Management for a free consultation.