Thanks to last winter’s waterlogged soils, aerators are very much flavour of the month. The most recent addition to the 20 or so makes already out there is the 3m Auctus from Irish maker Alstrong.
This has 10 scraper boards fitted to the front of the machine. Each of these is individually sprung and designed to level and disperse cow and horse dung, scratch out dead grass and moss. When set aggressively they expose soil and bare patches to allow grass seed to germinate.
Next comes a roller that levels and firms the ground. It is fitted with 57 75mm hardened blades that aerate the soil and keep the topsoil porous without creating too much of a slot so that grass seed would be lost.
See also: How to sort out grassland compaction
Seed can be blown down the air seeder tubes on to splash plates and dispersed evenly across the full width of the machine.
Finally, two rows of 25 8mm grass harrow tines rake the grass seeds into the soil and help remove any remaining dead grass or thatch.
Weight is 1.5t but can be increased to 2.2t when the drum is filled with water. Horsepower requirement is 110hp.
Cost is €10,500 with a Delimbe air seeder fitted with electric controls. Without a seeder it costs €8,000.