Core Aerator vs Verticutter

Grass Pad Total Lawn Renovation
What’s the difference between core aeration and verticutting?  Which one should I use on my lawn?" We get these same questions from customers every year. During fall overseeding season, there are many different options as to how to prepare your lawn for renovation. Ultimately, the homeowner needs to make the decision based on the condition of their lawn. Understanding the benefits of each will help you make the right choice for your overseeding project.

Grass Pad Core Aerator
What is core aeration?
Aerification is the process of pulling up cores or plugs of turf and soil from your lawn. The benefits of aeration are to improve air and water filtration, as well as nutrient uptake and reduce compaction, which in turn helps to improve the root system of your turf. Homeowners with thick turf, poor drainage or heavy compaction will benefit from an aeration. Aerators are not the best tool for over seeding, but more like a way to improve soil conditions to help the grass to grow.

Grass Pad Core Aeration
Areas with hard compacted soil and poor drainage will benefit from a heavy incorporation of PrimeraOne Field Conditioner immediately after aerification to improve soil conditions. PrimeraOne Field Conditioner, calcined clay particles, will drop into aeration holes and soil substructure to improve drainage and translocating air to and from the root zone.

Uncle's Tip: If you choose to core aerate, run the machine over the lawn multiple directions, to leave two to three-inch spacing between holes. After aerifying,  over seed and fertilize the entire areas. 

Grass Pad Verticutter
What is verticutting?
Verticutting is making shallow vertical cuts or slices into the soil. A verticutting machine has many vertical slicing blades. It will cut multiple slits or grooves across its path. The more grooves you have in the soil, the better seed to soil contact. The better seed to soil contact, the better seed germination you will get when overseeding. A verticutter will be the best tool to use for overseeding when you are attempting to get large areas established.

Grass Pad Verticutting Grooves
Uncle's Tip: Use a verticutter for total lawn renovations when the majority of your lawn is a weed patch, dead grass or bare ground. Apply Grass Pad seed first then verticutting the lawn in two directions (recommended for best results) will drill the seed into the grooves made by the verticutter. This practice mimics how a farmer drills his crops into the field.  

Related: Control-Alt-Delete: Total Lawn Renovation

Grass Pad Lawn Hall of Fame
Bottom line: When you want to improve soil conditions, use an aerator. When you want to grow a lot of grass seed, use a verticutter. When you just have a few bare spots, use a rake. It doesn't have to be complicated. In any case, every fall season, over seed your lawn with Grass Pad quality seed and fertilize with  LoveLand Renovator , Golf Course Starter or LoveLand Supreme.

Related: Fall Lawn Renovation