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Aeration va "Tine Dethatching"

4 seasons lawn&land

LawnSite Gold Member
So I get the whole aeration vs dethatching thing and how true dethatching is a means of aggressive renovation for when aeration is just not enough. So my question is, if tine dethatching is a less aggressive dethatching then why not just aerate?

Edit-title is supposed to be "vs"

Jason Rose

LawnSite Fanatic
I think the tine dethatchers have their place. They work great to pull out the "excess" dead junk out of the turf, without doing any damage to the healthy turf. The material a tine thatcher removes isn't the same thing as thatch, which is what the aerator would be punching through and pulling soil up ontop of. Tine dethatchers also are nice to use in the spring with the first mowing, if it's possible, to 'fluff' the grass back up and to pick out embedded leaves and debris.

The downside to wanting to run the tine dethatcher over the lawns in the spring is that the preemergent is usually applied already. And, unless it has been well watered in, there's a risk of disturbing what's on the ground.


LawnSite Bronze Member
Aeration is an annual, preventative practice for people who mow regularly and correctly, etc. Dethatching is for the lawns that get too much fert. or the people insist on overseeding every single year with double the rate...Ive dethatched tons and aerated tons more and they are two completely different processes for different results. A good aeration in multiple directions and a clean bagged mowing will do wonders compared to tearing up your lawns.


LawnSite Bronze Member
Piscataway, NJ
Aeration and de-thatching, are two entirely different things, and have nothing to do with each other. Aerating is for just that!!!!Roots need water & oxygen. Compacted soil inhibits the penetration, into the root zone, of both. Aerating loosens up the soil down into the root zone, to alleviate this problem.

De-thatching, commonly called "vertical mowing", cuts out, and brings to the surface, dead stolons and rhizomes that inhibit the flow of water and nutrients through that layer of debris, into the soil. Much like a Thatched roof sheds water, in olden times. De-thatching is also good before over-seeding, in that it scratches up the soil nicely, for good seed to soil contact.

Aeration does not accomplish what de-thatching does & de-thatching does not accomplish what aeration does. They are two different chores, serving two different purposes.