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Scarifying / aeration during hot dry spring ?

I have some basic grass care to do - scarifying and hollow tine aeration for three clients. 

Its a new process for me and concerned that march / april is the usual spring hit due to warming soil , increased light levels and generally rain. 

With no rain on the direct horizon and pretty intense sun -- is it best to get it done asap or maybe wait for more usual weather ?

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  • I'd try and ensure the clients have a sprinkler they are willing to use. I follow a scarify with a granular feed and this needs water. I wouldn't do a deep scarify either as bare patches will take too long to recover, and any new seed obviously won't germinate quickly. 

  • PRO

    trouble is dan its large areas - all 500 - 1000 sq m -- will take ages with sprinklers off one water source 

    the ground is so dry on some of these properties ! -- its looking like some rain finally coming in next two weeks - going try and delay until theres been a few hits to get moisture back in and then spend a week hammering it all 

    • My 2cents is that there would be sufficient moisture in the ground to hollow core. I would say you would be fine
  • PRO
    I second what Dan and Darragh said.

    Also if the customer cannot water sufficiently and regularly after the work, the lawn will suffer and look bad all Summer.

    What type of soil is it? Clay will bake hard soon if no rain and the warmer weather. Would advise not to hollow aerate if so.

    Perhaps a light scarify and do a more invasive one with hollow tine in Autumn. Upsell an over seed to fill in the gaps, etc. Or just wait until Autumn for the renovation work and sell on the Spring and Summer feed and weeds type treatments.
    • PRO

      Some of the soil is pretty heavy clay -- already cracking in places 

      cheers for the info -- will be waiting for some weather changes and just do light work and follow up feeds etc 

      leave any heavier stuff for autumn -- english weather certainly keeps you on your toes ;)

  • PRO

    Personally, I wouldn't be hollow-tining this late in the year, more so on clay. Pencil tine now if need be. I've been scarifying the last 3-4 weeks and following up with a large granule, non-scorch slow release granular feed. This weekends rain in the midlands will be doing them nicely. I've been doing 2-3 passes at 3-5mm. I trust that the rain will arrive, and have informed customers that they may wish to water for every 3-4 dry days until they're happy with recovery. About done for scarifying so they are in decent shape in time for summer. September does allow for deeper work.


    We can't stop work just because the weather isn't perfect. April sunshine isn't that strong - for cracking and really firm ground grass coverage would have to be sparse in the first place. As always, there are many variables. Worryingly, it always balances itself out... I'm waiting for May or June to be monsoon like. 

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