Bermuda, Scalp or Dethatch?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Lee Homan, Apr 6, 2001.

  1. Lee Homan

    Lee Homan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 163

    Just wondering what you guys that mow bermuda have better luck with in the spring scalping or dethatching.
  2. NateinAtl

    NateinAtl LawnSite Member
    from Atlanta
    Messages: 121

    scalp is the only thing I have seen on bermuda lawns--other than burning the lawn. Dethatching still leaves the dormant blades of grass which is what needs to be gone so the lawn can flourish. Scalping absolutely sucks, but makes the rest of the year go pretty easy. I normally scalp down to 1" and mow through summer at 1 1/2" and the fall at 2"
  3. HOMER

    HOMER LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,183

    We must grow different Bermuda in Alabama than Atlanta.

    I usually just take mine down gradually over the winter to 2" and then let it gradually get back to 3-3.5".
  4. Lee Homan

    Lee Homan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 163

    I've never scalped bermuda before but I mow it no shorter than 2" during the cutting season. I've noticed in the summer the slightest dip in terrain makes for brown spots. It doesn't seem to do it as bad in the spring. I wonder if it's from the old grass that was left over from the previous year.
  5. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,645

    I take it down to the dirt if possible, and get rid of as much brown as i can. I let it creep up to 3" during heat stress. Dave g
  6. NateinAtl

    NateinAtl LawnSite Member
    from Atlanta
    Messages: 121

    Every grower, University, and extension service will tell you that bermuda needs to be mowed short. Sure there is the possibility to get the brown scalp marks if the lawn is not level, you just have to know the lawns you are working on, and make sure you are not taking off too much of the leaf blade each mowing. It's more of a problem on bermuda if you have to skip a week due to rain than on any other type of grass. The shorter you keep it cut, however, the thicker it becomes, and the longer it stays green in the fall.
  7. KD'sLawns

    KD'sLawns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 160

    For my own lawn, I cut the grass on the lowest possible setting on my 21". then I attach a dethatching blade to my old stand-by and lower it until the tines touch the ground and go over it again. Sure, if you have some peaks in your lawn it will take it to the dirt. It will also help keep your lawn level by topping off those peaks with the dethatching blade. Usually takes my lawn a little more time to get back up where I like it, about 3" but the end result is well worth it.

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