Most lawn caretakers are conversant with mowing. But, what happens with the accumulation of dry grasses or leaves? They accumulate over and over at the bases of the grass on your lawn?
You require scarifying your lawn. Scarification is the mechanical process of removing thatch or the dry grass cuttings that accumulate on your lawn.
The critical question as to how often you should scarify relates to how often the buildup of that takes place. The rate at which the thatch builds up from one lawn to another varies.
Therefore, lawns with years of neglect or those with moss only require a heavy scarifying.
Rarely would a scarified lawn require the same process within a few weeks. Though, redoing it on a sooner schedule helps a struggling one to recover within short periods.
The scarifying frequency depends on the type of lawn grass you grow.
Some species like fescue among other species if fine greases build up thatch faster than other species. Lawns, where these species grow, will require more frequent scarifying to give them fresh looks and for healthy growth.
Naturally, grasses with plenty of turfs produce lots of thatch. In lawns, they can be a menace. So high that producing grasses are discouraged for home lawns. One other issue with thatch on lawns is its favor for fungal based diseases.
Overall, it’s excellent to avoid grasses that build on the thatch. Most ryegrass species do well, building almost no thatch.
Professional scarifiers recommend scarifying once every twenty for months (once every two years). However, some lawns may stay in great shape for seven years without any need for scarifying.
If your lawn does not require scarifying within every twenty for months, pay attention to feed it with balanced nutrients as wells as aerating it.
The bottom line is, scarify when your lawn requires it.
Equipment You Require for Lawn Scarification
Lawn scarifies- also dethatchers are tools designed to cut through lawn soil, removing any dead moss and remains of grass. They are either powered via electricity or manual pushing.
Dead grass and the accumulating of thatch hinders adequate drainage and aeration of the soil. Also, poor filtration of water encouraged the buildup of moss.
Pro Tips: before scarifying, carefully inspect your lawn for moss. If any, plan to spread the moss killer before scarifying is done. Live moss is dangerous as it spreads spores all over, probably worsening the situation.
Pre Scarifying Procedures
If you applied a moss killer, look out for it to appear dry and either brown or black.
On a dry day, mow the entire lawn on very low settings. That way, you get an opportunity to remove all the grass in one move.
Scarify on a high setting and repeat it twice. Subsequent runs can be done at angles with lowered settings.
Finish with the application of a mixture with topsoil and some grass seeds.
If the lawn appears tired, consider adding some grass seeds (overseeing).
Tip-: apply some fine compost mixed with fine sand to optimize their germination.
Indications That a Lawn Requires Scarifying
Ideal times rely on your location and prevalent weather conditions. Scarify when the turf is most plentiful. Late into spring and autumn are mostly the growth seasons.
More often, if the lawn is infested with moss, it helps to scarify at least annually.
Alternative Lawn Scarification Tools
An ordinary garden rake is also ideal. It’s helpful with the lightweight and pressure on the lawn.
A small trowel also works well on small. Additionally, a fork is also helpful for aeration. If your interest is mostly soil aeration, you can use work with a pair of lawn spikes.
Tip: Plan to scarify when it coincides with strong growth. The grass can recover faster when it’s a high growth season.
Best and Worst Seasons to Scarify Your Lawn
Do not scarify on the months of Januarys, Februarys, and Decembers. These are months when the lawn grass is on hibernation.
Scarifying in March should depend on how the weather looks. If the conditions are warm, scarifying will favor the re-growth of your grass.
Aprils are okay with scarifying the lawns, as it coincides with spring.
Usually, the soils are warm with adequate moisture. But you may have to be on the lookout for the changes in weather patterns around your locality.
May -In some areas may have excellent conditions for scarifying. However, if temperatures are high in summer, it’s best not to scarify. The soil may be too hard, and you may end up ruining your entire lawn.
June, July, and Augusts mostly coincide with summers, so you should avoid scarifying your lawns.
In the summers, that’s the time you require to use your lawn. Ideally, it’s not a moment to tear it apart by scarifying.
It’s advisable to reschedule and keep the lawn well-fed with water and free of any weeds until autumns come knocking.
On summers, aerating the soils may work well, but it’s a nod for the scarification. By then, the soil is hard and baked dry under the prevalent high temperatures around.
Septembers and Octobers are the best and recommended months to carry out lawn scarification. By then, soils have good warmth; the air has cold temperature, and soils adequately moist for grass re-growth.
The conditions are also ideal for overseeing, promoting re-growth on patches that could be bare. Of course, follows the winter when your lawn will sit idle under the frosty temperatures. Scarifying on November is not recommended.
You can still carry on with it with a careful outlook on the prevailing weather conditions. In case of forecasts signifying frost or low soil temperatures- of less than seven degrees Celsius, avoid scarifying your lawns.
The bottom line is, to scarifying requires cold weathers with moist soils. Although autumn and springs are the best for scarifying, other seasons may work, with a caveat to note the adversity from weather occurrences.
Overview – On How Often One Can Scarify the Lawns
Scarify the lawns when they need it. Lawn scarification helps remove thatch or dead grass that accumulates on the bases of the grass on your lawn. The best times to scarify are the cold months, coinciding with massive growth to allow for recovery and re-growth of the grass on the lawns.
Professionals recommend that scarifying be done once every two years. However, some tough species like ryegrass can do well with up to seven years without any need for scarification.
The species of grasses that produce heavy thatch may require scarifying at more often intervals, especially if they have moss growing in amongst the grass on your lawn. Scarification facilitates the aeration of the soil with the strata that harbours the rooting system of your lawn grass.
The accumulation if the dead grass also hampers with drainage and consequently the aeration of the soil.
If your lawn is small in size, you can work around scarifying without the need for hiring or purchasing heavy machinery. Work carefully with an ordinary garden rake, a trowel or a pair of lawn spikes.
In case your lawn is infested with moss, plan to apply chemicals to kill the moss before scarifying or raking to minimize the spread of spores which establish the moss.