De-thatching is a service that is not needed by everyone. It is best to do a sample area and a soil test prior to going through the efforts needed to complete a dethatching service on your lawn. There are simple ways you can do this on your own or we can provide you this test while we complete a soil sample. Here is a link to how to complete a test to see if you need to dethatch your lawn.
What is thatch?
Thatch is the layer of organic material (grass clippings, leaf mulch) and living organisms that accumulate at the base of the grass roots. A thin layer of thatch is beneficial but if it accumulates too much it will have negative effects on the lawn. Thatch can build up due to acidic soils that prevent a healthy population of micro-organisms that eat and compost the build up of organic materials. Even over fertilizing with high levels of nitrogen can cause thatch to build up by influencing other factors.
What does too much thatch cause?
Too much thatch can cause the roots to not reach the soil for a solid foundation to your lawn. It can absorb fertilizer that you are having applied preventing all the nutrients from reaching the soil and being wasted. It can also cause root rotting because the thatch will absorb and retain more moisture than the soil and creates a situation where the roots are constantly over wet and then begin to rot. Too much thatch will also allow for moss to grow if there is shade which will suffocate your lawn.
What is the process of dethatching?
Dethatching is removing the majority of the thatch that has accumulated on the lawn. This is done by using a heavy rake like tine which will pull up the thatch and leave the grass roots as much as possible. This is best done early in the season as it will stress the lawn by exposing roots that were covered by the thatch. The amount of thatch that is removed can be overwhelming. The image below is an extreme example of dethatching. Once the thatch is removed from the root base then it has to be picked up and removed from the lawn all together. Otherwise the thatch will just settle again and you will have the same issue.
The dethatcher shown is a walk behind which has powered rakes that scrape the soil pulling the thatch to the surface. Currently we use a pull behind dethatcher that we go over your lawn twice with to get the best results. Once the lawn has been dethatched we will gather up the organic material that was pulled to the surface.
When is the best time to dethatch your lawn?
The best time is early in the season so that the roots are able to rebound prior to the heat of the summer. However, if you are able to keep your lawn watered properly you can dethatch your lawn any time.
What should I do at the same time as dethatching?
A good plan is needed when doing renovations on lawns. Depending on the lawn you could need to put down fertilizer, lime, and it may be beneficial to aerate and overseed at the same time getting the best results.
Why Choose Chesterfield Lawn Services?
Prior to completing any service for renovations we require a soil sample so that we know exactly what your lawn needs. This prevents unnecessary services and a waste of time, money and resources. We will work with you to make a plan on how to get your lawn to a healthy state and maintain the health of the soil at the same time.