2 min read | “Thatch reduction” may not make you immediately smell the fresh air that comes with spring rejuvenation, but it is a necessary component to making your turf look and feel its best.
Springtime always brings sunshine and lush, green grass to mind, particularly when it’s been a long winter. While we can’t control the sunshine, we can help you when it comes time to prepare your turf for the new season so you can have the turf you've been dreaming about.
The first question you may be asking is “what is thatch?” Well, thatch is the accumulation of moss and other dead materials that builds a layer on top of the soil, beneath the visible grass blades. Some thatch is a good thing as it can help improve tolerance to foot and mower traffic, and keeps the soil cool. Too much thatch buildup, however, and your turf may be slow to drain, resulting in spongy turf, poor root growth and ineffective pesticide applications. By dethatching, you will help the grass grow stronger and healthier by allowing more air, water and nutrients to reach the grass roots.
So, how does dethatching work? After determining that your thatch layer is too thick, you will begin the process of reducing that thatch, or “dethatching,” by mechanically removing the excess with a rake or an aerator. In most cases, a rake will be sufficient for the type of buildup you’re likely to encounter, but in extreme cases, an aerator may be beneficial.
With the Lely Thatcher, tines work their way through the grass, removing excess moss and dead material. This allows the grass roots to receive the appropriate air, water and nutrients that will result in improved turf health. Consisting of a lightweight frame with four rows of staggered 7mm tines, each tine is easily adjusted to nine different positions that will allow you to achieve the desired amount of trash or weed removal. Lely uses shot peened tines, which means they have undergone the cold work process used in the finishing of metal parts to prevent fatigue and stress corrosion failures and extend the life of the part.
Along with pulling out the excess thatch, the tines help grass blades stand up straight, which assists in producing a clean cut when you are mowing throughout the year. An important tip to remember is that it may not be necessary to dethatch everywhere; sometimes there are particular hotspots that need to be addressed, while the rest of your turf is within the acceptable range.
More information about the Lely Thatcher can be found in this free spec sheet.