What is Aeration?

The key to understanding how to deal with a problematic pitch comes first in understanding the way a pitch and its drainage and structure works. Turfworks  understands what it takes to grow healthy grass and how to help it grow effectively.

One main aspect of this is air in the soil, or lack of it in cases of poor growth and structure. Our range of aeration and drainage machinery can help to alleviate growth issues by allowing air into the root system.

The term aeration is much overused in the grounds care industry, and the practice of aerating a pitch is not for the amateur as more damage can be done than good if carried out at the wrong time or in the wrong conditions.

We know which machine suits which situation and understand that one machine does not fix all problems. Lawn aeration is not merely making a hole in the soil and assuming that this will aerate effectively.

Aeration can be carried out using a variety of methods. The “verti-drain” machine that we use uses tines to penetrate the soil which are either solid or hollow, depending on the soil conditions, time of year and desired effect.

The “verti-drain” is designed to de-compact soil on sports pitches once or twice per year only. Equally spaced holes of 25mm diameter and up to 300mm deep provide a surface pan shatter, allowing water and air to disperse to the grass roots a lot easier.

Hollow tining is the practice of sinking a hollow steel tine into your grass surface and removing the plug of grass and soil.

This will then be deposited temporarily on the surface. This is then removed and  topdressing is spread and worked in.

The aim of this is to aerate your lawn, allowing air down to your grass roots. It also reduces any compaction your lawn has sustained.

You should be aiming to get down at least 3” and preferably 4” or 5” although you will require a machine to achieve those depths.


• Improves and helps maintain a better playing surface

• Improves and helps promote good soil structure

• Promotes quicker drying of turf

• Better absorption of water from the surface to the drainage system helping prevent surface water problems


Verti draining can alleviate problems that sport pitches face such as compacted surfaces after long periods of continuous use or mud interfering with the draining system.