I've posted this article before, but we never really got this far into it... http://urbanext.illinois.edu/lawnchallenge/lesson5.html "Core aerification, followed by topdressing are two methods that will generally correct the reasons thatch is accumulating. Core aerifying machines will pull up small soil cores to the surface that are left there to act like topdressing. The holes created help solve problems such as compaction or poor drainage. Topdressing is simply adding a thin layer(1/8 to 1/4 inch) of compatible soil over the thatch, which adds microorganisms to help in breakdown." This article doesn't talk about molasses/sugars to increase the activity of microorganisms that way, and certainly compost will do even more. What would happen to the material that is broken down and would it benefit the soil in any way? Is it cheaper and more beneficial than mechanical dethatching and removal of debris?