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verticutting is also known as dethatching, vertical blades swing around and flip the thatch out of the turf. it doesnt really cut into the ground. slit seeding cuts into the ground and installs grass seed into the cut as it makes it. it doesnt do much if anything for thatch build up.
 

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A Verticut unit is one with fixed knife blades that will slice through the thatch and into the soil. Spacing is important here, too close like one inch and it will dethatch the lawn. 1.5 to 2 inch spacing is ideal. A verticut can be used to stir seed into the top layer of the mineral soil layer under the thatch layer. Thus the term Verticut / slice seed or slit seed. A dethatcher is a machine designed to "remove thatch" and not cut into the soil. Blades a usually flail or springs that give way rather than cut into. They are closer often .50 inch apart. The hammer on the thatch layer (organic layer) to loosen it and pull it loose so it can be removed. Dethathing will also do a great deal of damage to the growing plants unlike the minimal damage done by verticutting.
Turfcobob
 

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A TR does both as you can adjust the depth of the tines. It will dethatch and slit seed/verticut - the bottom line is you want to get the seed in the soil - not too deep just in - like 1/16 inch and that is it enough so it does not move.
 
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