Lawn Aerators - Plug type

cpo1September 8, 2011

I'm preparing to aerate my lawn and wonder what folks think about pull-behind plug aerators, versus renting a walk-behind. I have a zero turn mower and also a rugged ATV. With exception of storage being a pain with the pull-behind, are there a lot of other disadvantages to a pull-behind. I know they must be more problematic with turning, but I don't see this as a big issue in my lawn. I have used walk-behind rental units before and I know they can wear you down quickly. Thanks again for your input.

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Why are you aerating?

    Bookmark   September 8, 2011 at 4:27PM
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I've twice used a tractor and pull behind aerator (the kind with a drum that you fill up with water. I went back to having someone aerate with walk behind aerators. I found that I couldn't get the corners of the property well with the tow behind and doing the swale was difficult. Picking it up, cleaning it, and returning it to the rental center wasn't much fun either.

On the upside, it did a great job for most of the property and the actual aeration was very easy. For me, I found someone who does the walk behind aeration for not that much more than doing it myself with a rented tow behind.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2011 at 5:40PM
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The tractor and pull behind aerator (the kind with a drum that you fill up with water would be a hassel and something you would not want to store. A little pull behind tractor aerator from home depot store, that you add a little weight to works good, you can go over your yard several times to cover every area, cris cross direction, etc. whatever it takes to do the job. If you aerate every year, the cost will save you time and money. You could have your lawn aerated by the time you go to the store and rent the drum type.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2011 at 10:18AM
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Based upon a couple of messages received, it sounds like aerating the lawn my be overkill. The yard is not used, except when mowing, so soil compaction may not be a problem. I'll dig a sq. ft. section up and analyze the root system of the existing grass and go from there. I have read where lawns need to be aerated about once each year, so I just accepted that as gospel. Since I have dead crabgrass and Kentucky 31 fescue in about 4000 sq. ft. of the 9300 sq. ft. front yard, I guess I'll run my Mantis tiller over these areas with the slicing blades, remove the dead stuff, fertilize and over-seed. I also have the regular tiller and dethatching attachments, plus a larger tiller if needed. Does that sound like a reasonable approach for getting a Kentucky bluegrass mixture up and running yet this fall? Thanks again for your replies and thanks too for the aerator recommendations. I appreciate it.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2011 at 1:17PM
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I'm a big proponent of aeration. The problem with most reasonably priced pull aerators is the few tines/spoons on each spindle. Too few tines cause for very elongated holes which take longer to repair.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2011 at 12:13AM
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We just aerated our lawn today with our new tow-behind aerator. It's from Home Depot online--brand is Brinly (I think). We live on hard-packed clay (from new construction last year). I checked the size of our plugs versus the size of the plugs laying around in the subdivision's common area that was done last week by the HOA's lawn service, and ours were just as big. We're pleased with our purchase. Our clay is going to take several years of aeration and topdressing of compost before it's healthy enough for a nice lawn. The purchase will pay for itself.

We previously had an aerator from Lowe's (don't recall the brand). We sold it before moving here because we knew our stuff was going into storage, and we were trying to lighten our load. I don't think it would've held up to this clay--it was much lighter that this one which is quite heavy on its own, before adding weight. Our last soil was nice, rich black soil which was easy to work with.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2011 at 9:30PM
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Thanks again to everyone for their replies. I appreciate them.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2011 at 9:34PM
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well renting a core aerator is much more expensive now, a little over $100/4 hours but what we do is that I share the cost with my neighbor two hours for him and two hours for me the cost is shared so easy on the pocket, as we rent one of those mechanical aerators from the home depot construction equipment rental company.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2011 at 5:56AM
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