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Okay guys i tried the search but as we all know its not the smartest tool in the shed.

I feel like im passing up money.

I had a lady call the other day and asked if i do dethatching. I haVe no clue what in the hell she is talking about so i dusted it off professionally and said no mam at this time we don't offer those services.


What the hell is it and is there any money in it?

THANKS GUYS
 

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Dethatching is removing the buildup of grass stems and leaves that have not decomposed. Thatch more than 3/4" thick is bad for turf because it prevents fertilizer, pesticides, and water from getting to the soil. If you pull out a soil core thatch is the straw like material between the soil and the green stems and leaves. A small amount of thatch is good because it acts as a cushion between the soil and human / equipment traffic.

Most people remove thatch with a dethatching machine which consists of blades that spin vertically and cut down into the crown (growing point) of the grass plant. If you are too aggressive with a dethatcher you can kill a lot of grass. I always recommend using a core aerator to reduce thatch. The soil cores that are pulled up contain beneficial bacteria which help to break down the thatch layer. It is a slower process (for breaking down the thatch) but there is no danger of harming the turf. You should go over a lawn 2 or 3 times with a drum type aerator to bring up enough soil.

Check out this bulletin for a better description of thatch and its control. http://www.extension.umn.edu/distribution/horticulture/DG1123.html
 

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I use a front mount thatcher on my ZTR in the spring to remove excess thatch and dead grass. It springs up the lawn and gives it a head start for growing.
 

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Prevailing opinion has gravitated towards not dethatching, but aerating in the very early spring and fall to combat thatch buidup... and this comes from a small solo with a dethatcher! Dethatching according to many experts does more damage than good to turf, and I am inclined to agree.

I use my power rake now for slit seeding, and ripping up lawns I killed with Roundup prior to a renovation. I do have a few customers who insist on this service, and even explain why I don't like to do it, but some insist... so I do it and bill 'em.
 

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from what I've gathered over the few months, the plugs as they call them can be picked up or some feel that leaving them will be more beneifical as they have some nutrients in them that the lawn and soil will absorb.

Price, I'm thinking double my mowing rate for a core aerator job. If you have to rent a aerator to do it, try to line up a few customers first, this will lower your expense on the rental and spread the cost over all the customers. In the end, you'll make more money.
 

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Definitely leave the cores. They will disappear in about 2 weeks as the grass grows and they get chopped up by the mower. Getting soil on top of the thatch is the key part of aerifying to reduce thatch.

Remember to check for Invisible Fence and sprinkler systems before aerifying. Require the customer to mark all wiring, sprinkler heads, valve boxes. Minimum charge for a 5000 sq ft lawn should be $75. Charge more if the yard is hilly. Most aerators are only effective going uphill so it will take longer to do a good job.
 

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Definitely leave the cores. They will disappear in about 2 weeks as the grass grows and they get chopped up by the mower. Getting soil on top of the thatch is the key part of aerifying to reduce thatch.

Remember to check for Invisible Fence and sprinkler systems before aerifying. Require the customer to mark all wiring, sprinkler heads, valve boxes. Minimum charge for a 5000 sq ft lawn should be $75. Charge more if the yard is hilly. Most aerators are only effective going uphill so it will take longer to do a good job.
Agreed... LEAVE the cores... and if you must, just use some mulching blades and a mulch plate to break them up a bit at a 2" mow height in the fall. They will break up, and are actually a good thing to leave on top... it improves nutrient flow throught the entire system.
 

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Prevailing opinion has gravitated towards not dethatching, but aerating in the very early spring and fall to combat thatch buidup... and this comes from a small solo with a dethatcher! Dethatching according to many experts does more damage than good to turf, and I am inclined to agree.

I use my power rake now for slit seeding, and ripping up lawns I killed with Roundup prior to a renovation. I do have a few customers who insist on this service, and even explain why I don't like to do it, but some insist... so I do it and bill 'em.
I agree with ****** on dethatching - requested often but overrated. Steer toward core aeration which dethatches plus decompacts among other things.
 
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