Understanding thatch levels

When you move into a new home with a lawn, or install a new lawn, the thatch build-up might not register with you and with good reason. Many varieties of Buffalo lawn in Australia are naturally a low thatch type of lawn, as are common varieties of Kikuyu. But, here’s the important bit…some new varieties of lawn available are not low thatch.

High thatch is not typically an issue in colder climates such as Canberra and Melbourne but throughout the rest of the country, where mild winters (or no real winter) dominates, and long hot summers are normal, thatch can become a real problem for your lawn. When the thatch level gets too high it can affect the lawn’s ability to absorb water and nutrients as the layer acts like a barrier between the lawn and the soil below. Thatch is required to a certain extent in order to protect the soil below but like many things in life, moderation is the key. If the thatch layer gets too high you will need to undertake dethatching or scarifying to reduce the amount of thatch present. Take care with this process as some varieties of lawn, such as Sir Walter, shouldn’t undergo this process. Seek expert advice if you are unsure.

If you are looking for a type of Buffalo lawn for your place be wary of types that are not Sir Walter. New breeding has created some very fast growing Buffalo types, but with this fast growth comes more maintenance and more thatch problems. They are popular with some turf farmers as it can be ready for sale quickly but you might find you are left with a very tired and unhealthy lawn only a few years down the track. Harden Park Lawns’ Sir Walter does take longer to grow but with that comes a lawn that will stand the test of time.

When choosing a new lawn, and if  you live in North Queensland, ask for a low thatch variety of lawn such as Sir Walter DNA Certified lawn. Your lawn will be healthier in the long run and thatch levels won’t be an issue.

For more expert advice on selecting the right type of lawn for your North Queensland location and local climate just contact the team at Harden Park Lawns today.

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