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Renovating Your Lawn (Vertimowing)

16 Feb 2023 0 Comments

One important task that homeowners often overlook is dethatching or renovating their lawn. This process involves removing the layer of dead grass, roots, and other debris that accumulates between the grass and soil over time. Here are a few reasons why dethatching or renovating your lawn is important:


  1. Improved air and water circulation: As the layer of thatch builds up, it can create a barrier that prevents air and water from reaching the roots of your grass. This can lead to a dry, patchy lawn that is more susceptible to disease and pests.
  2. Better nutrient absorption: Thatch can also prevent important nutrients from reaching the roots of your grass, which can stunt its growth and make it less resilient. By removing the thatch layer, you can promote better nutrient absorption and help your lawn stay healthy and vibrant.
  3. Enhanced appearance: Dethatching or renovating your lawn can also improve its appearance by creating a more even, uniform surface. This can help to eliminate bare spots and create a more lush, attractive lawn that you can be proud of.
  4. Increased longevity: By removing the layer of thatch and other debris, you can help to extend the life of your lawn. This can save you money in the long run by reducing the need for costly repairs or replacements.


Overall, dethatching or renovating your lawn is an important part of lawn maintenance that should not be overlooked.


Before you decide whether to dethatch your lawn it’s important to also determine the type of lawn you have. As Buffalo lawns grow predominantly above ground, you need to be very careful when vertimowing. If you remove all of the above ground stems (stolons) you will effectively remove the entire plant. This is not to say it can’t be done and done effectively. Our advice is to consult with a lawn care renovation professional who can help you determine the best course of action for your specific needs.


The steps for vertimowing, also known as scarifying or grooming, a lawn are as follows:


  1. Determine if your lawn needs vertimowing: Check if your lawn has a layer of thatch, which is a buildup of dead grass, roots, and debris that can impede water and nutrient absorption. If the thatch is more than 1 cm thick, vertimowing can be beneficial.
  2. Mow the lawn: Mow the grass to a shorter-than-normal height to make vertimowing easier and more effective.
  3. Adjust the vertimower: Set the blades of the vertimower to penetrate just below the thatch layer. The exact depth may vary depending on the type of grass, caution is advised for buffalo lawns.
  4. Vertimow the lawn: Run the vertimower over the lawn, making sure to overlap each pass slightly. The machine will remove the thatch and debris and leave them on the surface.
  5. Remove the debris: Use a lawn rake or lawn mower to remove the debris from the surface of the lawn. Steps 4 and 5 can be repeated mowing in different directions to increase the effectiveness.
  6. Fertilise: It is recommended to use a renovation specific granular fertiliser to aid in a quicker recover from your renovation. Black Label Hi-Performance is our granular fertiliser of choice. Also applying a wetting agent like Hydraplus to help with water penetration and water retention will help much needed water get down to the root system. Kelp Force will also help with the development of new roots and shoots as well and increasing the plant’s resilience. Finally there are two other products that are recommended but not a necessity, Humic Pro will help ongoing to increase your soils ability to retain nutrients increase your soils microbial activity and Phosplus liquid fertiliser to aid in root recovery and improving the plant’s ability to photosynthesise.
  7. Water: Water the lawn to help it recover from the vertimowing process.
  8. Monitor and maintain: Keep an eye on the lawn after vertimowing and continue to maintain it by watering, fertilising, and mowing as necessary.


Recovery from a renovation will take longer for different lawn varieties. The healthier your plant and soil is going into the renovation the quicker your recovery will be.


This information is designed as a guide to help people determine if their lawn could benefit from a renovation and to get a better understanding of the process. This doesn’t cover coring or aeration of your lawn which can be a big benefit also. We intend to cover this in another blog in the future.


If you have any questions or would like details about any of the products mentioned above please reach out at

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