Lawn care in November

Hi All. Do you think It would be ok to Aerate my lawn and apply top dressing and fertiliser this weekend. It doesn't look like it is set to get below 2 degrees c for the rest of November.Also any thoughts on manual hollow tine lawn aerators? I have 280m2 to do.Again, thanks for all the advice in advance. Regards

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  • PRO

    What fert have you got? 

  • Hi. Thanks for replying. It is proctors autumn and winter lawn feed

  • PRO
    I’d stick the granules on and leave the other stuff till spring so it can recover when it’s actually growing.
    • Hi Richard. Thank you for your advice. I appreciate your time..
      • PRO
        No problem. I cut grass rather than treat it though so the lawn care guys know better and will be along by tomorrow no doubt!
        I just think it’s late to be ripping down into the grass!
  • PRO

    Hi Lee,

    Richard sums it up, well but my thoughts....

    It's ok to hollow tine aerate this time of year but watch for the soil being too boggy/waterlogged, if so hold off until conditions improve. Manually hollow tining 280m2 will take a long time, despite being a good workout! Consider hiring an aerator for the day as an option. Will cost more but typically the hire machines are pro spec and will do better job than a manual aerator that won't extract cores as deep as a machine can.  

    Fertiliser is fine to go down now, but make sure it's a dedicated Autumn/Winter type feed with low nitrogen. You don't want to promote top growth until Spring. 

    I would hold off top dressing now. Assuming you are thinking 70/30 sand/soil type mix, best to go down when conditions/ground are dry, plus when grass is actively growing to push through the dressing. 

    Another option is to top dress and over seed in Spring, when you will get more benefit from top dressing.

    Last point is why top dress now? Are you thinking the dressing needs to fill the holes? Not always necessary on domestic lawns as you primarily hollow tine to relieve soil compaction, thus want to keep the holes open to allow the surrounding soil to relax into that space over time, plus get water/air into the root zone and aid greater root density/growth. There's many scenarios and schools of thought on this but don't think you have to replicate exactly what done on say a golf green for a domestic lawn. 

    • Hi Russel. Thank you so much for time to reply.

      My school of thought was to aerate, feed and top dress the lawn, one to fill in the bumps and hollows from the new ground settling a bit and all the blxxdy worm casts and also to provide oxygen to the roots and aid in compaction.

      I see now my idea was flawed as like you said, aerating and then top dressing would not provide oxygen to the roots.

      Unfortunately the ground has been boggy and sodden since I posted this thread and so I have decided to hold off on the aeration for now.

      So for now, I shall just give it a winter feed as you have suggested.

      I actually wanted my lawn to be a smaller version of the Emirates stadium but now see it is an impossible mission. Especially with young children and a wife who kicks them out of the house to play in the garden come rain, ice or Sun. Grrr. It is amazing how much work went into laying that turf with the ground clearance, grading, top dressing and turning but so easy for it to become lumpy and bumpy after one summer.

      I see now that My green lush carpet is going to take up a lot of my time in the future.

      Thanknyo Russell for your advice. Sorry it has taken me so long to reply.

      Regards Lee
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