Tilling the lawn - Knowledgebase Question

Orange, Ne
Question by mwhite51
September 23, 2009
I tried all summer to keep my lawn, but it's till in bad shape. Some parts are green, some dried, and I have some yellow patches.
I am going to reseed the lawn. My question is, can I till the lawn to aerate it some before I spread the seeds? Or should I just rake it?
Would tilling over the lawn remove the grass that is there actually? or would it aerate the lawn without affecting the grass?


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Answer from NGA
September 23, 2009

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Rather than tilling, which will destroy the best parts of your lawn, I'd vote for aerating your existing lawn. A core aerator will remove one inch by three inch plugs from the lawn. Leave the plugs on the lawn and they will dissolve in rain or water from the sprinklers. After aerating spread a thin layer of sand or compost over the area and water it in well. The sand or compost plus the soil from the plugs will work their way down into the holes left by the plugs. You can then overseed your entire lawn.

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