Using the Right Tools to Thatch a Lawn

Thatching a lawn is a necessary part of lawn care and refers to the process of removing unwanted and excess organic material which is under the grass but on top of the soil. When thatching occurs on a lawn, it can become thick enough to block water and nutrients from reaching the root system of your grass. This causes grass to become discolored and can even kill it if the problem was left unattended. When you are looking at thatching a lawn you want to find the right tools for the job. Many people choose to go with a thatch rake, which is a tool that looks similar to a double-sided rake but is designed to intentionally get down into the thatch and help you remove it from your lawn. While you might not see a huge amount of coloration difference right away, often times in only a few days or a couple of weeks you will see a major difference in how green and healthy your lawn is.

Manual thatch rakes are not the only tools available. There are also automatic thatchers which are gasoline or electric powered machines which look very similar to tillers, but don’t tear up the lawn on that level.  There’s a lot of disagreement over whether these tools are the best option or not. Many traditionalists like the manual thatch rake because it allows you to easily adjust for depth and scale depending on what ever particular piece of ground you’re working with. On the other hand, there’s little denying that a gasoline powered automatic thatcher is going to be 10 times as fast and for large patches of ground is going to be far more practical than just using an old thatch rake.

One of the important things to remember as a cautionary tale is that a small amount of thatch can be a good thing depending on the environment. For example, when there is drought, high heat, and water restrictions a little bit of insulating thatch can go a long way to helping keep the root system of your lawn healthy. Many landscape experts say the general rule from is that about half an inch of thatch is okay but anything above that is too much. If you have over 1 inch of thatch across most of your lawn then it is very much time to take action.

There are seasonal impacts to this bit of lawn care as well. Thatching a lawn is generally best done either in early spring or else in early fall. There are two primary reasons for this. The first is that autumn and spring or seasons which almost never have droughts and high heat. The second reason is that he thatching during these two seasons gives your lawn time to recover either before summer or before winter. Whether you choose to use a power rake lawn thatcher or a manual version of the tool, it is important to know that both have their place and that there is more than one sign which can mean it’s time for thatching. While the most common form of thatching along is to get rid of weeds or grass like build up, things like Moss or pine needles also break down and have the effect of causing thatching on your lawn. These can be a major hassle to take care of but the damage they would do to your lawn if left unchecked is even worse.

While thatching a lawn might take a little bit of time and work, the good news is that this type of lawn maintenance is fairly infrequent and you should be able to see the difference that your efforts are making.

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