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View Full Version : Good time for Aeration & Thatching


Howey09
02-09-2010, 03:05 PM
When is the best time to aerate and thatch your lawn, Spring or Fall?

WHIPPLE5.7
02-09-2010, 03:10 PM
Spring. Just before it starts getting green. Aerating should be done several times a year depending on soil and traffic over the turf. Anyone with kids and/or dogs should get aerated 3 times a year.

DoetschOutdoor
02-11-2010, 07:46 PM
Lol, thats gotta be a joke whipples. 3 aerations a year? Haha. Best time for aeration is fall time, dethatching can be done anytime you feel like making a mess and tearing up your yard.

WHIPPLE5.7
02-11-2010, 08:31 PM
Lol, thats gotta be a joke whipples. 3 aerations a year? Haha. Best time for aeration is fall time, dethatching can be done anytime you feel like making a mess and tearing up your yard.

Around this neck of the woods everyone does it in the spring. Nobody has ever done aerating in the fall here ever. I do my own yard 2 or 3 times a year and its better than any of my customers yards. I get about 2 more mows out of mine than my customers as well. As far as the dethatching you obviously are a rookie. Thats supposed to be done when its dormant. Your response doesn't impress me much there pal.

DoetschOutdoor
02-12-2010, 01:29 PM
Dethatch when the grass is dormant? LOL, you want me to dethatch in Jan. and February? Get outta here. Dethatching can be done anytime of the year Howey, there are obvious better times to do it but just dont get out when its 100 degrees and overstress the grass anymore than you gotta. Whipples, I think your lawn is needing aeration boy. LMAO, you cut your lawn two more times than your neighbor!!!! How many cuts did he have according to your journal? 3 aerations a year, you got OTHER BIG PROBLEMS if you are aerating 3 frieken times. HAH, good midmorning laugh. Gotta go let my two 80lb dogs out to run some laps around the pool while the ground is frozen solid and my grass is dormant. Dang, whipples said anyone with dogs and kids hasta aerate 3 times a year, even in middle of winter!!!!

WHIPPLE5.7
02-12-2010, 03:07 PM
Damn you take sh*t out context and assume I said things that I didn't. When did I say I aerate in the winter? Everybody here does dethatching and aeration in 2-4 weeks leading up to the start of the growing season which is March-April. Its the way people have been doing around here as far back as I can remember even the guys that have 10 crews and $50K trucks. I also didn't say anyone has to areate 3 times a year but in some cases it doesn't hurt. If your definition of dethatching if tearing up the yard and making a big mess you are doing it wrong. You make it sound though someone is rolling thru the yard with a Bobcat and harley rake or something. Our yards out here look super after dethatching and it promotes good turf health. In other parts of the country people aerate in the fall but everybody wants it in the spring here, what am I supposed to do turn them down so they call someone else?

DoetschOutdoor
02-12-2010, 03:26 PM
We just come from different parts of the country...here people look at you like your crazy when you speak of aerating in the spring, too much of a problem around here with weeds and dont want to disturb the pre em. We also have very hard pack clay, in addition to really crappy builders' lots but no one ever even considers more than the fall aeration. I know that dethatching must be done in some cases but I am an advocate against it unless absolutely needed. We have alot of yards around here that are extremely over fertilized and when you combine that with record rainfall the past few years, some lawns need it and it does make a BIG mess. We never dethatch other than to do a major repair due to improper care and that makes a big mess, like 30+ bags or full 16' trailer. I'd much rather aerate, make better money, and have the neighbors come over asking for service rather than make a mess but it does get done on a few yards every year.

WHIPPLE5.7
02-12-2010, 03:49 PM
Around spring powerraking is high prioirty to atleast 1/2 the homeowners in the city. Most yards are around 3-5K sq.ft. plus its done atleast every other year so you can get about 5 places done until you have to empty. Then again I have a equipment only on the trailer and the truck with a dump box is reserved solely for debree. Bagging it up takes too much time. We run larger than normal catcher systems and empty straight into the dump box. Some guys use 21s and bag into trash bags but those are also the guys who are still on the first yard by the time I'm on my 3rd or 4th. I'll be the first to admit that the powerraking isn't always needed but when you got people ready to spend it may as well go to you than the next guy in line.

The Rookie
02-12-2010, 03:53 PM
I like spreading grass seed before and after I aerate, either in early spring when it finally dries up a little, or in early fall when temps dont skyrocket.

SOONERS222
02-14-2010, 07:45 PM
Most people in central Ohio aerate at least twice per yr. -> spring and fall. Sounds like ******(in St lowie) is a freakin expert on everything. LMAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

dKoester
02-14-2010, 07:53 PM
Whipple is correct! Golf coarses aerate multiple times per year for awesome results.

DoetschOutdoor
02-14-2010, 11:41 PM
Not a matter of trying to be correct Sooner, just stating how it is here. I do alot of aerations and Im sure whipples does as well. We do what goes best for us.

FourTrees
02-15-2010, 03:03 PM
Lol, thats gotta be a joke whipples. 3 aerations a year? Haha. Best time for aeration is fall time, dethatching can be done anytime you feel like making a mess and tearing up your yard.

Seriously were did you hear this; the guy at home depot, selling those shoe aerating things.

Aeration is done to fix soil compaction. Areas that have high usage such as parks and playing fields should and could benefit from aeration at a higher rate as often as every month.


Thatching done properly does not tear up a yard at all. It removes thatch, hence the name.

Not a matter of trying to be correct Sooner, just stating how it is here. I do alot of aerations and Im sure whipples does as well. We do what goes best for us.Doing it does not equate to knowing it. There is a proper aeration method and many do it wrong.

turfcobob
02-15-2010, 04:32 PM
Ok I gotta get in this one. Thatching is the process used in Ireland to putting a roof on a house. Dethatching is the process of removing dead / living organic material from a lawn. This can be done with a hand held device (garden rake) or a number of mechanical powered devices. The most commonly used powered device is called a Dethatcher, Power Rake, or any number of coined names used over the years by different mfgs. Any machine that has vertical cutting knives regardless of spacing is considered a Dethatcher. Some have break away or spring knives so they do less damage to the machine. You will usually find these in rental dealers inventory. A more professional machine would have fixed knives or blades that cut vertically throught the thatch and into the soil. These a commonly referred to as Verti-I-Cut machines because of the vertical cutting action.

The objective of both type machines is to cut through and remove the thatch layer. However if the "Thatch Layer" is not more than 3/8 of an inch thick I would not remove it. I would instead launch an aggressive aeration program of several aerations a year. A study published by the University of NEBRASKA shows that thatch can be controlled by a program of aeration. This is much more beneficial to the grass plant than ripping it and it's enviroment to pieces just before growing season. Although if you feel the need to rip the lawn to shreds do it just before the growing season so the plants can recover.

Best time to Aerate depends on the plant type, geographic location, customer and your personal need to extend your revenue stream into the fall. Popular believe used to be that all aeration should be done in the spring. This gets the best, quickest reaction from the grass plant, makes the customers happy and the ground is usually soft after the winter thaw. But often spring clean up gets in the way and aerations suffer or do not get done. Try this....Aerate your new customers in the spring, put down some fert, scalp the lawn, put down water and bingo the new customer gets instant satisfaction for money spend the believes in aeration. After a couple yeas move them to the fall to make room for more new customers in the spring. Only so much spring to go around. In the fall you can aerate right up the solid freeze, fertilize with the aeration and you will be amazed at the reaction of the plants in the spring. All winter the soil will be moving, the fert will work down and in the spring the plants will appreciate all the food and respond with quick, lush green growth. Both times of year have an advantage. Now if you want more info I will be glad to give you an hour long lecture on Aeration Benefits and How to Sell it. I used to do it at conferences all the time.

FourTrees
02-15-2010, 04:43 PM
Best time to Aerate depends on the plant type, geographic location, customer and your personal need to extend your revenue stream into the fall.

This being the problem. Most LCO use it as a $ tool not a effective make yard as healthy as possible.

Dethatching should really be used, yet so many companies swear by it.

It is good for tear up a lawn only in renovating lawns that need some serious help followed by over seeding and other practices.

Aeration can be used on a schedule (though there are many theories about it) core aeration is used to decompact soil and allow air into a actively growing turf.


BUT again most just use it to make more money off customer, wonder how many truly know the principles behind it.

DoetschOutdoor
02-15-2010, 06:17 PM
I sell aerations both for the very good money that is made and the fact that its simply part of a routine maint. program. We have bad problems with broadleaf weeds like crabgrass so we shy away from doing aerations in the spring and stick to doing them in the fall. Aeration is not rocket science and its the best money per hour that I can make. One of my best customers came when I was 19 years old at Home Depot renting an aerator and explained the difference in aeration and dethatching to a clueless homeowner. Been aerating his yard for 5+ plus year now. The only yards that I have to dethatch are customers that mowed improperly or over fert. Since alot of the yards that are aerated are relatively small, they are gone over multiple times with the aerator and that is enough for thatch control. With the amount of rainfall we have gotten the past two years, the lawns have been growing so fast that some more dethatching may have to be done this year but Id rather not.

DiyDave
02-15-2010, 08:58 PM
Whipple is correct! Golf coarses aerate multiple times per year for awesome results.

But golf courses have things that are called "greens fees", which pay for all that aeration and fertilizer, and chemicals. Apples to oranges, compared to home lawns, unless the customer is very wealthy, and amenable to the services you provide!:waving:

DoetschOutdoor
02-16-2010, 11:46 AM
Excellent knowledge there DIY! I didnt want to get into another argument over the very, very basic procedure of aeration and dethatching so I left out that point you just made. No homeowners aerate their lawns 3 times a year, its completely pointless. Golf courses have heavy machinery on them DAILY, thousands of people walking on them, heavily watered and fertilized, and they are under extreme scrutiny by their members and guests....all those reasons and the fact that they have a full time staff to do stuff like this is why they aerate several times a year. A 10k homeowners lot does not need aerated 3 times a year.

DiyDave
02-16-2010, 12:21 PM
Exactly, I was trying to politely point that out, without taking a side in the argument. Arguments is for the political section!:laugh::laugh::waving:

betmr
02-21-2010, 11:23 AM
This being the problem. Most LCO use it as a $ tool not a effective make yard as healthy as possible.

Dethatching should really be used, yet so many companies swear by it.

It is good for tear up a lawn only in renovating lawns that need some serious help followed by over seeding and other practices.

Aeration can be used on a schedule (though there are many theories about it) core aeration is used to decompact soil and allow air into a actively growing turf.


BUT again most just use it to make more money off customer, wonder how many truly know the principles behind it.



In all my reading, on this entire site, apparently very few! For some odd reason, many think aerating is an integral part of overseeding. I fail to get that one, myself.