Everyone with grass needs to know how to dethatch lawn. Just like everyone with a car needs to know how to change the oil. Driving a car makes the oil get dirty so it must be changed out at certain points. Mowing grass eventually leads to having thatch form in the lawn. So eventually you need to dethatch it.


Thatch ….What?

OK, so you might be wondering what thatch is and why it needs your attention. Thatch forms from dead grass clippings and can gather together to prevent new growth from being as strong as it could be otherwise. Think of it like a matting process. A few grass clippings are not a big deal. They eventually will deteriorate back into the soil. But enough clippings together will mat together and just lay on top of the turf. Healthy grass has a hard time growing while being weighed down with this thatch..


How to Know When to Dethatch?

You can’t always see it on a surface level. A good rule of thumb is to dethatch a yard twice a year. If you bag your clippings, once a year may be enough, but you will not be hurting a thing by doing it twice. The dethatching process is good for grass even though there may not be much thatch built up. It is sort of like a massage for the turf. Everyone loves a good massage!

How to dethatch your lawn? Well, tools for dethatching are easy to get. You can rent a dethatcher if you have a huge yard and pull it behind your lawn mower. If you have a small yard, a smaller dethatcher can be found at your local home improvement store for a low price. It is also possible to do this chore with a simple yard rake if you don’t mind the physical labor.


Manual Dethatch: Using a Rake

If using a rake, all you have to do is rake the yard in the same direction. The rake tines will sweep the dead grass into piles. Just use a tarp or wheel barrel to load them up to get them off your lawn. They shouldn’t be that heavy. Depending on your level of thatch, there might not be much to put on the tarp. The main point is to loosen the thatch up so new growth is possible.


How to Dethatch the Easy Way?

If using a pull behind dethatcher, your job is easy. Just ride around the yard letting the dethatcher do its thing. The more you ride, the better job you will do so pop in your headphones and cruise for plenty of time to do a great job. The process is the same as with a rake. You mainly want to loosen the dead grass so new grass has a chance to thrive. If there is any built up clippings you will need to load them on a tarp to haul away. If you happen to have a riding beauty, check out this instruction video made by John Deere.


Dethatch…Your Grass Needs It!

To many people, dethatching does not appear to do much. The hidden damage to your lawn is the issue. If you don’t use a dethatcher, you won’t know there is a problem. From just looking at a lawn, you wouldn’t guess you even had a thatch problem or that thatch was even a real thing! But once you start the raking, it is apparent that there is enough dead matter on the turf to impede growth.

If you never changed the oil in your car, it would be fine….for a while. You would never know the oil turned to gummy crud eventually. And when your vehicle finally died from using dirty oil, you would then see how important an oil change really was. Not all problems are surface level. Thatch is one of those issues in the lawn and garden world.

Happy Mowing!


  1. Reply
    brenna98 March 13, 2015 at 8:05 pm

    Just wanted to drop a quick comment. I landed on this site looking for how to re-string a weed wacker for a friend but spend hours on here reading the articles about dehatching a lawn, fertilizing, and push mower safety. And I don’t even own any grass to cut! I did find the video on how to change the string plus more than I ever knew about weed wackers. I can give her some great tips now about storing it this winter. Thanks!

    • Reply
      billmartin March 15, 2015 at 12:34 pm

      Glad you liked the information! Please visit us again!

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