UGA Soil Test Says To Incorporate 34-0-0 – Would Aerating Be Enough?

Q: I had a UGA soil test done and it recommended: “For establishment, incorporate 3 pounds of 34-0-0 per 1000 square feet into the top 4 to 6 inches of soil prior to seeding.” I just wanted to know if aerating would be enough to accomplish that, or do I have to till?

A: Local landscaper Lyle Collins ( says his brother-in-law, who studied turfgrass management at ABAC, has successfully seeded fescue lawns with just aerating and spreading fertilizer over the top. Nitrogen leaches fairly easily through soil. With the amount of watering done during establishment, leaching is accelerated versus normal rainfall. Tilling could be more damaging if there are trees around, when the surface roots are destroyed during the job. In addition, tilling brings up dormant weed seeds. I think you could be successful with aeration as long as the tines penetrate the soil at least two inches and there are ten aerator holes per square foot.

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