Aerate your lawn by creating small holes in the top soil to increase oxygen flow to the roots of plants, trees, grass and flowers. Aerating your lawn can also help you remove thatch, which are patches of grass blades, creeping grasses and weeds that suffocate healthy plant life by not allowing valuable resources including oxygen and water to reach the roots. Depending on the size of your lawn, a variety of lawn aeration tools are available to choose from including lawn aerator shoes.
Lawn Aerator Shoes
Lawn aerator shoes are slip-on coverings with spikes used to poke holes into compacted soil to increase oxygen and water flow to grass and plant roots. You can wear slip-on coverings or "sandals" over most casual shoes.
Aerate your lawn at least twice if wearing these shoes, the second time at right angles to the direction you walked the first time. The best time to aerate your lawn is during the spring and fall months.
To aerate your lawn, walk across your entire lawn. Step in the soil around plants, flowers and trees. Do not step heavily in newly planted areas as you may cause damage to the plants.
Do not aerate young plants as the roots are not strong enough to withstand the pressure of the shoe.
Reviews of lawn aerator shoes are mixed. While these shoes have spikes, the spikes are usually not long enough to penetrate the soil as deeply as other lawn aeration products.
When comparing lawn aerator shoes, look for quality materials such as leather or durable plastic. Spikes should be made of strong materials as well. Try to find shoes with longer spikes.
Slip lawn aeration shoes over the shoes you plan to wear when aerating your lawn before buying them to determine their comfort level.
Lawn Aeration Alternatives
In addition to lawn aerator shoes, mechanical lawn aeration equipment, liquid aerators and hand aeration tools are available. Mechanical aeration equipment is more expensive than other lawn aerators. Most people rent these machines from lawn and garden centers.
Mechanical aeration equipment is considered better than shoes, liquid or hand aerating tools because of their speed and depth of soil penetration.
Liquid aerators are made of ionized chemicals that push soil apart to allow oxygen to flow through soil. For best results, you may need to apply a liquid aerator several times before seeing any results.
Hand aeration tools usually have one to two long spikes that you poke the soil to increase oxygen flow. These tools are effective, but are time consuming to use. If you have a small yard or garden, hand aeration tools are a cost-effective alternative to machine aeration equipment. If you have a large lawn, using hand aeration tools to aerate the lawn may take several hours.