The lawn care and maintenance specialists at Midwest Lawn Co are experienced in providing routine, attentive maintenance for lawns and outdoor living spaces of all sizes, soils, and plant varieties. We offer a variety of lawn care services to keep your grass healthy and your yard looking its best all year long.
Removing excess organic debris from your lawn is an important habit to get in, as it promotes hearty root growth and proper water drainage. Removing debris by raking or thatching your lawn will result in a yard full of vibrant, strong grass.
Power raking and aerating are both beneficial for your lawn, but they are not interchangeable treatments. Power raking rids your lawn of excess organic debris like thatch. Aerating enhances grass root development and decreases soil compaction.
Not to be confused with dead grass, thatch is the layer of grass clippings, leaves, and stems found between the roots below the soil and the grass above it. Thatch is full of root balls, and it is in these balls that beneficial decomposition occurs. But when layers of thatch become too thick it can prevent the roots of the grass from accessing vital air, nutrients, and water and cause shallow root syndrome.
Power raking is not just a more aggressive approach to raking. Standard raking removes dead leaves that have fallen from trees in your area. Power raking removes thatch from your lawn. If thatch becomes thicker than half an inch deep, then the grass roots will grow in the thatch instead of growing deep into the soil, where the most nutrients are found.
This process requires a power raking machine, which digs the thatch out of your lawn. About the size of a push mower, a power raker can be bought or rented from many garden and lawn care retailers. Consider using the power raking approach if you have thatch that is over half an inch thick. Take core samples from several areas of your lawn before power raking the entire yard, as thatch build-up is often irregular.
Power raking is an effective way to remove leftover thatch, and should be done in either the spring or the fall, since grass grows well in these seasons, and the heat of the sun won’t have as much of an impact on it. Power raking during the growing season gives grass the opportunity to recover before the extreme conditions of mid-summer or winter, which is when grass goes dormant.
For power raking to accomplish its purpose, a power raking machine should be used. Mowing with a mulching machine and leaving dead grass all over the lawn will not necessarily expose your grass to the nutrients and moisture that thatch may be obstructing. It cannot be assumed that dead grass left on the lawn will automatically decompose into the thatch layer either. Specific circumstances are needed for that decomposition to happen, including the right altitude and time of year.
If your grass is experiencing poor drainage, aeration may be a better approach than power raking. Recommended on an annual basis, aeration is the process of perforating the lawn, loosening the soil and encouraging water drainage for deeper root growth.
Our team of professionals at Midwest Lawn Co offers lawn aeration services to remove plugs of soil and grass to allow necessary air, nutrients, and water to reach the roots. We use an aerator machine to poke holes in the lawn and pull up plugs of grass, which we then leave on the lawn to decompose. The longer the removed plug is, the better aeration your lawn will receive.
In addition to preventing nutrients, minerals, and water from reaching the roots of the grass, thatch that is too thick can cause fungal issues. Power raking can be labor-intensive, but it is critical to preventing fungus and ensuring the health of your grass.
Power raking should be done when the soil is dry. Since live grass plants do not hold well in wet soil, power raking when the soil is too moist will likely result in accidentally tearing up or pulling out grass plants with the thatch. Power raking can be done in the fall or spring, once the ground has warmed to a minimum of 55 degrees. If the ground is colder than 55 degrees than do not power rake yet, as it is still too cold for the grass to grow.
Most grass types do well with power raking during their growing season. Cool-season grasses are better power raked during their growing season in the spring or early fall. For warm-season grasses, power raking is suggested between late spring and early summer, which is when the grass is actively growing.
It is very important to power rake when there is enough growing season left for your lawn to recover, as this process has the potential to harm healthy grass when performed haphazardly. For successful results that remove thatch without damaging grass, do not power rake unless there is a minimum of 30 days of growing season remaining after the power raking.
The best time to power rake is before overseeding or top dressing is performed. Mowing the lawn short before overseeding, then power raking after mowing to uncover the thatch will keep weeds and established grass from competing with the new seedlings.
Power raking is very labor-intensive, and you will have to purchase or rent a professional power raking machine to remove thatch thoroughly. For the best results, power raking your yard in both directions is suggested.
It is also recommended that you adjust the depth of the flails under the machine so that they make contact with thatch, but not with the soil. This can be tricky to accomplish, and risky if you don’t have much experience using a power raker, since it is easy to unintentionally pull up too much and make the grass bald.
Power raking is also a process that can bruise and even kill your living grass plants if you’re not careful. If you power rake too much, this may suffocate the grass in your lawn and increase runoff from rain and watering. Too much power raking can also remove chemical treatments that have been applied to destroy insects and weeds.
At Midwest Lawn Co, our professional landscapers have the best machines for power raking, and the experience necessary for proper operation, so you won’t have to worry about adjusting the flails or removing too much thatch.
Our lawn care team is also trained to recognize the best conditions for power raking. We know that the soil in your yard should be moist, but not too wet. If the soil is too wet than the grass could pull away.
We power rake at the ideal time, when the soil is dry but the grass is not. At Midwest Lawn Co, we never power rake when the grass is too dry, as the blades of grass would be brittle and this could weaken the grass, negatively impacting the health of your lawn.
Power raking is complex and time consuming, and often requires several passes to be effective. And a thorough cleanup (often with a hand rake) immediately after power raking is a must for removing the thatch that has been dug up.
If you’re still not sure if your lawn needs aeration or power raking, or are concerned about bruising or suffocating your grass by doing the raking yourself, contact the experts at Midwest Lawn Co. We provide aeration, dethatching, and power raking services, and save you valuable time, so you don’t have to spend your weekends trying to decide which service your lawn needs and learn how to operate the equipment required.
Don’t allow thatch to build up in your yard! Contact the professionals at Midwest Lawn Co to make quick work of cleanup and avoid all too common power-raking mistakes. When it comes to power raking, time is of the essence, so trust an expert to remove any thatch and restore the health of your lawn. A Midwest Lawn Co specialist can analyze your lawn and its unique conditions, and provide the right high-quality service at the right time.
Our professionally trained and certified staff delivers the expert power raking services that you are looking for, combined with a commitment to the best customer service and competitive pricing.
You deserve an attractive, thriving lawn, and with a schedule of routine maintenance, we can provide an outdoor living space that you are proud to share with family and friends. At Midwest Lawn Co, our goal is to provide superior services, save you substantial time, and keep your lawn healthy and vibrant.
To further inquire about our services and receive a free estimate, call the Chesterfield lawn care professionals of Midwest Lawn Co today at (636) 220-9991 or contact us online.