Chemical Dethatcher

AcornPest

LawnSite Member
Location
Texas
I posted this in "Lawn Renovation" and someone suggested I post it here.

"I was reading about chemical dethatchers last night. What I’m spraying now is pretty close. I think I just need to add some molasses.
There were a lot of home brews that had the same ingredients:
Soap, ammonia, beer, sugar (molasses or cola or even corn syrup), and mouthwash??
The chemical aerator I’m spraying has a surfactant. The liquid fertilizer (12-4-8) replaces the need for ammonia.
I guess the beer is in there for yeast and sugars but there aren’t that many commercial beers that have active yeast and much residual sugar.
I’ve been thinking about adding molasses to the mix anyway so now’s a great time.
Not sure about the mouthwash. They are mostly alcohol. Maybe it’s there to give the microbes something else to chew on. It with break down to CO2 and H2O easily.
Am I on the right path?"

What I'm spraying now also has humic acid and Superthrive.

Opinions?
 

andersman02

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Snowy MN
Its so hard to find solid research on liquid and chemical aeration vs normal plug aeration. We switched to a granular "organic" aeration 100% and don't do plugs anymore unless they we are overseeding also. There's some saying it works but takes time (which is what i believe) and some that says it doesnt do anything. What we use 100% works, as we see it first hand each year w/ people. Humic acid and other stuff I can't say whether or not it works or how well. But anytime your promoting the soil microbe health, it will benefit the turf.

Your right, the idea with any non mechanical is to promoted microbes that will decompose the thatch, aerating it at the same time. The granular stuff we use works real well to promote a healthier soil, aerating and dethatching along the way.


For me, I would recommend an, ACTUAL dethatching on a lawn that had more than 1" of thatch (not just the JRCO rake on the front, but something more aggressive). Same goes for a brand new sodded lawn that is on top of heavily compacted clay.

Those are really the only 2 times I'd recommend something other than our regular"chemical" aeration

Sorry I can't really answer the question though
 
OP
AcornPest

AcornPest

LawnSite Member
Location
Texas
If y'all have other ideas, please chime in. I'm trying to take my company in an organic direction but it's hard to find things that work. I'm using some organic but not 100%.
 

RigglePLC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Grand Rapids MI
If you have not already tried it "Screamin Green" organic formula is something to think about. Site-one should have it in stock. Perhaps apply it for round 2 and 4 with spot spray for weeds.

About the thatch--just consider it a sign of vigorous grass growth. It means the grass is one of the vigorous cultivars and is thriving; probably thick enough to repel weeds.
And check the soil for signs of poor aeration, oxygen causes red soil. Poor aeration causes gray soil--typical in deep soil layers.

Think about using only products that are 10 times less toxic than Ortho Weed-B-Gone. And with no odor. And do one overall broadcast and--then mainly spot spraying, as that uses 100 times less product per 1000 sqft.

Phasthound can show you the list of safest products.
 
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phasthound

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Mt. Laurel, NJ
If you have not already tried it "Screamin Green" organic formula is something to think about. Site-one should have it in stock. Perhaps apply it for round 2 and 4 with spot spray for weeds.

About the thatch--just consider it a sign of vigorous grass growth. It means the grass is one of the vigorous cultivars and is thriving; probably thick enough to repel weeds.
And check the soil for signs of poor aeration, oxygen causes red soil. Poor aeration causes gray soil--typical in deep soil layers.

Think about using only products that are 10 times less toxic than Ortho Weed-B-Gone. And with no odor. And do one overall broadcast and--then mainly spot spraying, as that uses 100 times less product per 1000 sqft.

Phasthound can show you the list of safest products.
To be clear, Screamin Green is an organic based fertilizer. It will produce a healthy green lawn.
I recommend Humic and Fluvic Acid products for dethatching. They are also good to mix with liquid fertilizers and pesticides to improve plant uptake. Molasses is a great food source for the microbiology that will breakdown thatch.
Don't waste good beer on turf. :drinkup:
 


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