What Is Thatch and Why Is It a Problem?

Thatch is the organic layer made up of dead and living stems which naturally occurs on the lawn.

What is Thatch and Why is it a Problem?

Thatch is the organic layer made up of dead and living stems which naturally occurs on the lawn. It builds up between the surface of the soil and the bottom of the grass blades. A little bit of thatch is okay. The trouble starts when 15mm or more of this layer has collected on your lawn.

Thatch can cause multiple problems. Excess thatch (over 15mm as shown in this image) may increase the likelihood of pest problems by harbouring insect populations.  It may also make your lawn more

 prone to turf disease, because the thatch layer remains moist and dark (an ideal environment for fungus growth).

And because a dense layer of thatch can absorb any application done to the yard, its presence can reduce the effectiveness of various lawn care treatments. For example, your fertiliser or grub/weed control products won’t do much good if they are caught up in a thick layer of thatch.

Thatch build-up can also impact the overall health of your lawn by making it difficult for oxygen and water to penetrate through its layers into the soil. The key to healthy turf is healthy roots, but roots must first have those elements reach them in order to thrive.

 

 

Aerating vs. dethatching your lawn in Cincinnati, Dayton, OH or Northern Kentucky.