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Does it help to aerate in the spring and fall? Also if there is a lot of dead grass and thatch build up would it be beneficial to power rake in the spring?

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A

Aerating in the spring and/or fall can be very beneficial in compacted areas
or areas with excessive amounts of thatch.  Aerating enhances the movement
of air and water though the soil and improves conditions for plant roots.

As for your thatch question, how much thatch is there?  As much as 0.5
inches is fine.  If you are working with a home lawn, I would not recommend
power raking except in cases of EXTREME thatch buildup (i.e. 2 inches or
more).  Power raking is actually quite stressful for the grass since large
amounts of healthy roots are also pulled up.  If you feel that some action
is necessary, I would recommend aerating in spring and fall with a core
aerator as a start.

Posted on 19 Oct 2007

Kelly Kopp
Water Conservation & Turfgrass Specialist

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