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Lawn care tip: How to combat thatch build-up

If you have grass, you’re gonna have thatch. But it’s how you deal with thatch build-up that will determine how much, if any, of an effect it will have on your lawn’s health.

Thatch is a culmination of dead organic matter such as grass clippings and other plant material that creates a barrier in the soil. The water, air and sunlight the soil needs to remain full of nutrients and moisture to produce green, healthy grass has a harder time reaching the grass roots. If the thatch layer becomes too thick, the grass will begin to turn brown and die. Furthermore, a thick layer of thatch is an open invitation to destructive pests such as grubs, which will kill your lawn completely by feeding off the roots of your grass.

Fortunately, there are a few ways to combat thatch build-up that are safe for your lawn. The first is to rake the thatch away from your grass. By making this a “must-do” task at least twice per season, you will increase the unlikeliness that your lawn will experience any negative issues from thatch. However, if you and your rake haven’t been too familiar in a while, it might behoove you to look into verticutting. You will need to rent a vertical mower to eliminate the thatch barrier. Once that is complete, you definitely need to aerate the soil below and add fertilizer. Since the lawn has been so starved for essentials, this rehabilitation process is a must in order to get your yard back into tip-top shape. Some experts suggest seeding as well, just to give your lawn an added boost and get some new grass roots in to give your yard a denser, greener appearance.