Pros and Cons of Dethatching Lawn


If you own a lawn, you should know how important it is to care about it. If you don’t care for your lawn, it might overgrow or, even worse, grow unhealthily. If you do not care for your lawn the proper way, there is a possibility that your lawn will be open to threats such as weeds and insects. No one wants their beautiful garden to be full of weeds and for it to be vulnerable to diseases.

Caring for your lawn properly provides you with many benefits, and we will get into it in more detail, but let us say even caring for your lawn a little bit will make it healthier and in a better condition.  We will give you information about the benefits of maintaining a lawn and how to maintain a lawn first. Then we will explain what dethatching lawn is, the pros and cons of it if it is something you should be doing, and how to dethatch your lawn.

What Are the Pros of Maintaining Your Lawn?

dethatch lawn, pile

There are many pros of maintaining your garden besides being healthy and growing healthily having a healthy garden by maintaining it both benefits you, your lawn, and the environment. But, you might ask, how will having a healthy lawn benefit the environment? Well, let us tell you. Like any other plant, lawns also sequester carbon and produce oxygen. And producing oxygen is one of the most helpful ways a lawn or any other plant can benefit the environment.

Apart from that, gardens benefit the environment in other ways, too. For example, a healthy garden can also be a trap for dust, dirt, and particles like that. It also can be a trap for stormwater pollutants. You might not believe it, but annually, a healthy garden can capture 12 million tons of dust and dirt! Crazy, right?

dethatch lawn, flowers

Apart from the environmental pros, as we said, it also provides pros for you. How do you ask? If you have a kid in your home, then maintaining your garden will allow them to play to their heart’s consent, and you won’t have to worry about them. They will have something to keep their mind busy, and they will be able to run in the garden until their energy runs off.

Not just for the kids, it can also be somewhere that you go to keep your mind busy. You can spend time in your garden, maybe lay down on the grass, read a book, keep yourself busy, and generally be peaceful. If you have a healthy garden, if you maintain it the right and proper way, you will not have to stress yourself about how your garden will look. Because if you care for it and maintain it, you can be sure that your garden will pay you back for caring for it and maintaining it by looking beautiful and healthy.

If you are considering selling your property, having a healthy garden will benefit you more than you think. If a house has a healthy garden, you might not believe it, but its value goes up. So, you will not just benefit from the garden’s beauty, but it might even make you earn some more money!

How to Maintain Your Lawn?

dethatch lawn, mower

Now, we will touch upon this subject quickly and get to our main point, what dethatching your garden is and the pros and cons of it. There are many things you can do for your garden to be in its best condition and for it to thrive. One of the most basic and important ones is mowing the grass weekly. This routine depends on the climate in your region, but mowing is important, especially in summer and spring, and doing it weekly will make you see the difference.

Whether you believe it or not, the time of the day you mow your garden is also important. Some say it is best to mow your garden early in the evening. The reason for that is to be able to keep the grass moisturized. Another thing you can do to maintain your garden is to use a sprinkler. Having a watering routine keeps your garden in line and makes it be able to be in its best condition ever.

If you have a sprinkler, you won’t have to water the whole garden alone, as the sprinkler will water your garden simultaneously every day. Also, you should remember that watering gives the best results when done early in the day, for example, between 6 and 10 AM. And it might be hard for you to get up that early every day. So, having a sprinkler benefits your garden and provides a benefit to you.

dethatch lawn, cut

You can also consider adding fertilizer to the routine. If you want to get your garden to the best condition it can ever reach, fertilizer is a great step. But be careful of using the right fertilizer as there might be different requirements depending on the grass and the climate. And the last thing we will give you information about in this title is to control the weed that is growing in your garden.

It might seem a bit hard for you to do it by yourself at first, but if you get the hang of it, you will see that it is not that hard. But if you keep up your routine to care for your garden, you will see that even those simple things like watering, mowing, and fertilizing will help keep the weeds away. Now, after explaining the basic things you can do to care for your garden and maintain it, we will get to our main question, which is dethatching lawn and the pros and cons of it.

What Is Thatch?

dethatch lawn, sakura

Before we dive into it, you might ask yourself, “what does dethatching mean?” You might not know it, but there is something called thatch on your lawn, and don’t worry before we get to dethatching, we will make sure that you know what thatch is first. Thatch is a layer of dead and living stems, roots, and leaves. Thatch is gathered between the soil and the grass, actively growing. If the thatch gets too much, it might cause your garden to catch some diseases. Not just that, it also causes your garden to be less resistant to drought, heat, and cold.

But keep in mind that not all thatch is bad, which is why getting the right answer to your question, “what does dethatching mean?” is beneficial! If the thatch is not more than half of an inch, then it might even provide some pros for your garden. But still, you should always keep an eye on it, check if the thatch gets too much, and dethatch your garden. If you maintain your garden the right way, water, fertilize, mow, and aerate it, you will see that it is not that hard to maintain a thatch and get over the problem even if it gets too much.

How to Prevent Thatch?

dethatch lawn, orderly

We mentioned this above too, but it is still best to explain how you can prevent thatch before it becomes too much. If you know how you can prevent thatch, that means you won’t have to dethatch your garden. So, let us get into how you can prevent thatch from getting too much and becoming excessive.

The main reason the thatch becomes excessive is poor caring for your garden. So, the things we mentioned and explained in the “How to maintain your lawn?” title is your answer to how to prevent thatch. You should mow your garden regularly, preferably once a week, water it regularly, which a sprinkler can help you with, and you should fertilize it. But there is one more thing that we haven’t mentioned above, and it is aeration. Aeration passes air through, mixing with, or dissolving a liquid or solid. Aeration enhances the quality and minimizes contamination in liquids, soils, and foods.

If you follow these steps, you will be able to prevent the thatch in your garden from overgrowing, and you can prevent it. But don’t worry, even if you can’t prevent the thatch from overgrowing, you can still dethatch your garden. Now we can get to explaining the dethatching.

What Is the Dethatching Lawn?

dethatch lawn, working

Again, the question may seem simple but we can’t stress enough that to find the right answer one must ask it in the right way like “what does dethatching mean?” As you can probably get from its name, dethatching a lawn means removing the excess, overgrown thatch from your garden. By dethatching lawn and removing the excess thatch, you are making sure that the soil in your garden gets enough water, air, and nutrients because, as you know, if the thatch is too much, it almost creates a barrier between the grass and soil.

And that means your soil might not get enough water, nutrients, and air. And unhealthy soil means an unhealthy garden. You can probably understand from the condition of your grass if the thatch is overgrown or not. You can check the grass; if it is not green as it used to be and looks dense, you can understand that the thatch prevents the grass from thriving and needs dethatching.

You might have heard of dethatching lawn with a different name, too. Dethatching lawns can also be known as power raking. This means dethatching is different from just raking your garden. For dethatching lawn, you will need a power rake or dethatcher.

How Can You Tell That Your Lawn Needs Dethatching?

dethatch lawn, lush
  • If there are more weeds in your garden than normal
  • When you walk in your garden, if the ground feels spongy or firm
  • When you check the depth of the thatch, if it is thicker than ¾ inch
  • If your garden is not green as it used to be
  • If insects are invading your garden
  • If the grass is weak
  • If the grass is thinner than it used to be

How Should You Dethatch Lawn?

For dethatching lawn, you should have a dethatcher. There are three main types of dethatchers that you can choose from to use in dethatching, and in this title, we will explain what each of them does for you.

Power rakes

dethatch lawn, magnolia

Power rakes are not much different from lawn mowers used in mowing your garden. They have tines, also called flail blades, that look like knives and are made of steel. These tines are under the device and rotate. You can use these machines by crossing the garden two or three times with it perpendicularly, and your garden will be dethatched. If you use this machine for the first time, we recommend you set it to the highest level so you remove the possibility of damaging your garden accidentally. These products are usually used for medium-sized gardens and medium or mild thatch problems.

Electric or corded dethatchers

If you have had a miniature lawn mower before, then you will not experience difficulty in using this kind of dethatcher as electric ones look like them. These devices have tines that rotate, and you can also set them to different levels. It is best that when you are using this type of dethatcher in dethatching, you cross your garden two or three times with it. These products are usually used for small gardens with no big thatch problem. You might consider using this product if you have a thatch problem that does not exceed one inch.

Manual dethatchers

dethatch lawn, line

These can also be known as thatch rakes. These manual dethatchers have rakes that have curved, short blades. These blades were designed for them to be able to go into the thatch in your garden and pull it out of the soil. Because they are manual, they might be harder to use than others as you will need to use them manually. But that means it is also the cheapest option among all dethatchers. As we mentioned, because these types of products have different settings that you can set the blades to, so, you can determine the depth that you will do the dethatching in your garden.

When to dethatch your lawn?

To not stress your garden, which can affect its growth, it would be better for you to learn pros and cons of dethatching lawn in the growing season. We mentioned above that climate is important to consider whether you are caring for your garden, and it is also important for deciding when is the best time to dethatch your lawn. One other thing to consider before dethatching lawn is to know your grass, whether you have warm-season or cold-season grass in your garden.

If you have grass that grows in the warm season that grows in the southern parts of the United States, then it should be best to dethatch lawn in late spring or early summer. But if you have grass in the cold season, which means it grows in the northern parts of the United States, you should consider pros and cons of dethatching lawn in the early spring or late summer.

Pros and Cons of Dethatching Lawn

dethatch lawn, mold

Now, after giving you all this information, it is normal for you to think where it falls on pros and cons of dethatching lawn. So, in this title, we will provide you with the pros and cons of dethatching lawns. This way, we can decide together whether it is more beneficial or harmful for your garden.

Pros of Dethatching Your Lawn

  • Dethatching lawn makes you able to control the layer of thatch

This might be the most basic pro among all of them that dethatching has. Thatch, in general, is not bad, but if it grows too much, as we said above, it becomes a problem. It prevents the soil from having enough water, air, and nutrients. So, to be able to control the thatch in your garden is a great pro. Because you will be able to make your soil have enough water, air, and nutrients, you will also be able to aerate the soil at the same time.

dethatch lawn, vast
  • Dethatching lawn makes your garden look more beautiful

Dethatching provides even more benefit to you than you think. Apart from making your garden in its best condition and healthier than ever, it also compliments its look. Because your garden will be healthy, it will also look more beautiful than ever.

  • Dethatching lawn provides you with the prevention of diseases

Again, because you will be able to make your garden in its best condition and healthier than ever, you will also protect it from diseases. Disease problem is a hard problem, as the diseases have a chance to spread, they can be a real pain. But if you care for your garden properly and dethatch it properly, you will be able to prevent the diseases before they even occur. This is one of the best pros ever.

Cons of Dethatching Your Lawn

dethatch lawn, robotic
  • Dethatching lawn might be considered expensive

Dethatching your garden is very beneficial for you, that is true, but it might be costly. Getting the right equipment and service for it might also make you pay a lot.

  • While dethatching lawn, you might also get rid of the bacteria that benefit the soil

Yes, most bacteria may not be great for your grass or garden. But that doesn’t mean all of them are harmful. Some bacteria are beneficial for the soil and the grass. When you are dethatching, during the dethatching lawn, you might also get rid of this beneficial bacteria, so you should keep that in mind also.

  • The dethatching lawn can damage the grass blades

One other con that might be the worst con among cons that we can give you an example of is that if you apply too much pressure while dethatching your garden, you might hurt and damage the grass blades and their roots. So, you should be careful about how much pressure you will put on the dethatcher before starting the whole dethatching lawn process.


dethatch lawn, myrtle

In this article, we talked about what dethatching lawn is and general information about it, like how you can dethatch your garden when you should do it, or if it is good. For you to decide if it is a good thing even if it has some bad sides, we also gave you some pros and cons about the topic. From our point of view, even if it has a few cons when pros and cons of dethatching lawn are considered, they won’t be much of a problem. You can just be careful, and the benefits will be worth the risk.

But as we mentioned above, the dethatching lawn is done to get rid of a thatch problem if you have any. And if you care for your garden the proper way from the beginning, check the level of the thatch; if it is overgrown or deeper than the recommended level, then you won’t have any problems with the thatch as you keep an eye on it regularly.

But still, everyone is human, and there might be many reasons you could not care for your garden and maintain it. That is no problem, either. That is why we made an article like that! To help you understand how to maintain your garden, and even if you were unable to, how to get it into its healthy condition. We hope this article helped you understand all the titles we explained separately and answered all the questions you might have had about this topic.

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