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Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by 94gt331, Aug 9, 2012.

  1. 94gt331

    94gt331 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,695

    I need some quick advise on how to properly dethatch a yard. A customer gave me a dethatcher a while back for a service i provided for him. I don't do any of this work. My customer has 1.5 acre yard kind of hilly and wants his yard dethatched. Any basic tips would be apreciated. Also is this a ok time of year to dethatch?
  2. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,081

    Dethatching puts a lot of stress on the existing turf, so if you are like the rest of the country right now, I'd hold off a while until the grass comes back to life and is thriving again...
    Personally I look at dethatching as a loss of potential SOM and an opportunity to use the stuff to build soil structure... when lawns are overwatered and overfertilized, dethatching is probably not a bad idea...

    Anyways, what kind of conditions are you dealing with??? Is your dethatcher made up of spinning tines, spinning blades or stationary tines being dragged behind a tractor???
  3. Rick13

    Rick13 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 408

    I try to talk the customer into aeration (it breaks up the thatch with core aeration)....but if they want their yard dethatched....I will do it.

    The biggest thing that helps me...is to make sure that you cut the yard really short before you start to dethatch. I usually will chop the yard down to 2 inches to 1 3/4 inches... this way you can move a little faster thru the yard with less/long green grass to fill up your tines. And then I will bag the yard once I get done dethatching. Give the dead grass a chance to dry out before bagging....you can fit more grass in your bags when its dry than wet.

    1. Cut super short
    2. Dethatch the whole yard
    3. Let the thatch dry out
    4. Then bag the yard for customer
    5. Last...Get Paid...its a lot of work if you do it right
  4. Darryl G

    Darryl G LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,033

    What kind of dethatcher are you talking about?
  5. Rick13

    Rick13 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 408

    My dethatcher is TurfEx and it's 48". I have their flex hitch that attaches to the front of my ExMark Mower. It works great and with my set up....makes dethating super easy!!!
  6. Darryl G

    Darryl G LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,033

    I'm curious what kind of dethatcher the OP is talking about, because there's a word of different between a power dethatcher with a reel and a spring tine one.
  7. adam.neusbaum

    adam.neusbaum LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 625

    I've never used a power-rake before. Years ago id stand on the pull type & have someone pull me around & then use an agri-fab lawn Sweeper. 15 years later& these yards are half the size & all that equipment is long gone. Sure wish my Turfco XT5 had an optional reel. Every aeration client ask me to contact them when we start dethatching the end of September. I've been quoting $225. Thoughts please. I picture removal & daily capacity will be easy with my dumptruck.
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