The tangled mat of organic matter around the base of the grass plant (above the soil) is called thatch. In small amounts it is good for the lawn. It acts as a natural mulch to retain moisture, lower soil temperature, cushions plants crowns, and discourages germination of weed seeds. The decaying plants add nutrients back into the soil.

Too much thatch can cause shallow roots, nutrient imbalance, and an invasion of insects and disease. When mowing turf with a heavy thatch, scalping may occur because the wheels sink into spongy turf. Grass which thick thatch is less tolerant to stress because of poor root structure.

Excess thatch results when the organic matter accumulates faster than the microorganisms can break it down. The could result from over-fertilization, infrequent watering, or leaving long clippings on the lawn.

Core aeration will remove cores or plugs of soil that contain thatch from the lawn, leaving holes in the ground to relieve compaction and increase air and water circulation in the soil. A lawn that is aerated will absorb more water.

A lawn is only as healthy as the ground it is grown upon.  If the underlying soil is unable to absorb and hold water, the grass will always struggle to survive without frequent watering.

The secret to a healthy lawn is aeration

A majority of lawns are grown on compacted ground. This can be the result of improper soil preparation when the lawn was first installed or simply from the foot traffic a lawn must endure from year to year. Compacted ground is hard ground, not very porous and very difficult to keep wet. The solution is to loosen up the soil so it will hold water more efficiently. We can accomplish this through core aeration.