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boneslawns
03-11-2011, 04:02 PM
2 questions. 1.Do i have to mix sand with my compost to top dress or can I just use compost? 2. do I really need to dethatch before a topdress or can i just aerate then top dress? Didnt know if covering the thatch with topdressing would be ok or not
thanks

ChiTownAmateur
03-11-2011, 04:59 PM
1. Technically "No."
1a. The better answer though is it depends completely upon your soil composition. You would want to add sand only if your soil does not drain well, for example because it is high in clay content. If you do addd sand, make sure it is the correct type, not sandbox sand.

2. Technically "No."
1a. The better answer though is that thatch, once it gets thick enough chokes out a lot of the nutrients and water...or in this case the topdressing. So if you have very little thatch, aerating alone will do just fine. if you want the lawn to be the best it can be, or if you have a lot of thatch, dethatching first will give you the best result. Think of thatch as beneficial in small amounts (provides some cover) but once it is thick enough it's more like a barrier that is detrimental to your lawn.

boneslawns
03-11-2011, 05:34 PM
Can I use masons sand. Or what kind
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ChiTownAmateur
03-11-2011, 05:58 PM
Mason's sand is too fine. You need a coarser sand, no more than 1mm in size.

JFGauvreau
03-11-2011, 07:56 PM
I would only dethatch if the thatch layer is more than 1 inch, otherwise aeration alone is just fine.

boneslawns
03-11-2011, 08:30 PM
how can i tell how thick the thatch is and what does it look. I have an idea but when i hear it being 1 and 2" some times then it makes me think Im seeing the wrong thing ha ha

JFGauvreau
03-12-2011, 08:39 AM
how can i tell how thick the thatch is and what does it look. I have an idea but when i hear it being 1 and 2" some times then it makes me think Im seeing the wrong thing ha ha

Usually when you aerate you will be pulling plugs on which you can see how thick the thatch is, if your not aerating then you can try to pull out little core of earth around your lawn.

Smallaxe
03-12-2011, 09:05 AM
Do a google search Images for thatch... Compost after plugging is good in that it get compost into the holes. Compost will also speed the breakdown of thatch in that it activates the decomposers....

If thatch is too thick it is better to change the cultural practices that cause it... :)