Did you ever ask your parents “why,” only to have them answer with the famous “because I told you so” response? That might have worked for them, but you need more information when it comes to asking questions about your commercial landscape — especially because no two service providers are exactly the same.
Landscaping services like mowing and weedeating are pretty universal in the way they’re handled by professional companies, but there are different approaches for tasks like aerating, topdressing with compost and overseeding.
Some landscape maintenance companies offer aeration and overseeding services, but many don’t include topdressing with compost, as well. Compost has several benefits, which is why our team at Level Green Landscaping applies it as part of our services.
So before you incorporate these lawn care tasks into your maintenance services, make sure you understand why your landscaping company handles them the way that they do — and how their services will benefit your property.
Here’s what you need to know about overseeding and lawn aeration on your Maryland, Northern Virginia or Washington DC property.
How Aeration Benefits Your Lawn
Just like you, your commercial property’s turf needs water, oxygen and nutrients to survive and thrive. But after months of foot traffic, equipment use on the grass and thatch building up on your lawn, those necessities will have a hard time reaching the turf’s roots. And when you limit or cut out the turf’s nutrients, you’ll be left with brown, patchy turf that is definitely not going to attract people to your site.
So to break up the compaction that happens during time and also keep your turf healthy, have a commercial landscaping company aerate it annually.
Lawn aeration involves perforating the soil with small holes to allow all of the nutrients to better reach the roots. The best time to aerate your lawn is during the fall before you begin a fertilization program or decide to overseed. You shouldn’t aerate your lawn during drought conditions because it can lead to weed growth and increase water evaporation — stressing your turf.
At Level Green Landscaping, we use an open-tine coring aerator with a ⅜- to ⅝-inch diameter core or a five-point disc with 4-inch penetrating skies.
The aeration spikes should penetrate the soil at least 1 ½ inches deep, depending on your existing soil conditions. Run your irrigation system after the turf has been aerated.
Aeration will help ensure your soil is ready to absorb all of the nutrients and seeds that come its way with topdressing and overseeding.
Why We Aerate And Compost Lawn
For some commercial landscaping companies, simply aerating your lawn is considered enough. But at Level Green Landscaping, our maintenance crews understand you need a good soil foundation if your landscape is going to look (and feel) its best.
That’s why the next step in our recipe for creating a healthy, lush lawn is adding compost to the soil, which is known as topdressing.
Compost is a mixture of vegetative matter that has broken down during time to form a rich mixture of humus. It helps the structure of the soil that the grass is growing in and makes it easier for the turf roots to expand in the soil.
Here are some additional benefits of adding compost:
- Releases nutrients slowly, having a longer effect on the health of your lawn
- Helps neutralize acid and alkaline soils
- Contains macro and micronutrients
- Reduces erosion and runoff issues
- Can reduce the amount of chemicals needed on turf
We spread a topsoil compost mix over bare patches and poorly performing turf on your lawn. Topdressing helps improve the nutrient and organic levels of the soil, while also increasing the success rate of germination of the seed. And if you’re going to pay to have your lawn overseeded, you want to ensure it’s going to work and actually grow in your soil conditions.
We spread ½ inch of compost over the targeted areas in your lawn. Having nutrient-rich soil helps lay the groundwork (pun intended) for having your lawn overseeded.
Complete Your Lawn Services With Overseeding
Once you have healthy conditions to grow your turf, you can start to fill in bare spots and make your lawn look more full with overseeding. This task includes spreading grass seeds across the turf without tearing up the area.
Overseeding is especially important because of the type of grass we have in Maryland, Northern Virginia and Washington DC.
Most of the properties we see have an improved tall fescue grass, which is a clump-forming turf grass that doesn’t spread like warm-season grasses. That means if one grass plant dies, the surrounding ones won’t necessarily cover the hole left by the grass. Overseeding can help fix that issue by growing new turf where it’s currently missing.
If done regularly, overseeding will create healthier, thicker turf that looks better and suppresses the growth of weeds in the turf. We apply seeds at a rate of 5 pounds per 1,000 square feet.
To encourage the seeds to grow, apply fertilizers and keep the lawn well-watered until the seeds become established. Your landscaping company should have a set plan in place to handle overseeded areas.
Bring Aeration, Compost And Overseeding Benefits To Property
We encourage our clients to ask why we do things a certain way here at Level Green Landscaping. It’s just another example of our open communication with customers — and dedication to performing high-quality services. We’re happy to go into as much detail as you want about our services.
If you run into a landscaping company that can’t (or won’t) tell you why they are doing something — or doesn’t know the best way to keep your landscape healthy — that can be a big red flag.
You should look for a service provider that is just concerned about your landscape’s health as it is its curb appeal — and what it takes to properly manage your property.
All of our services are focused on giving you a healthy, aesthetically pleasing landscape that will attract tenants and visitors. That’s why we go the extra step, like with adding compost before overseeding, on our clients’ properties. That’s why so many big-name commercial properties throughout the area have trusted us with their landscapes.
We provide commercial landscape maintenance services like lawn aeration in Maryland, Northern Virginia and Washington DC. Our clients include commercial, office, mixed-use, retail, HOA, condominium, municipality and institution properties.
Call us at 202-544-0968, or request a free consultation online to keep your lawn healthy going into the fall.