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When should I dethatch my grass?

Thatch is an accumulation of partially decomposed and undecomposed plant material at the soil surface. Thatch accumulation of less than one-half inch can be beneficial. Thatch accumulations of more than one inch are harmful. Remove thatch whenever it accumulates to more than one inch, but thatch is a symptom, not a disease. Thatch accumulated when something interfered with the microbial breakdown of plant material. If you have a thatch problem, it is usually due to soil compaction, poor drainage, or low soil pH. Alleviate the problem and the thatch will not re-occur.

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A closeup of a fire ant mound.
Filed Under: Fire Ants, Insects-Home Lawns, Turfgrass and Lawn Management April 6, 2021

Fire ants are the most common pests of home lawns, but homeowners can manage them with the right approach, and spring is the perfect time to begin the process.

An Eastern mole.
Filed Under: Turfgrass and Lawn Management, Natural Resources, Wildlife February 19, 2021

If you’ve noticed irregular, snake-like raised ridges throughout your lawn, Eastern moles have most likely found themselves at home. They are known for building a network of tunnels underground, and typically spend 90 percent of their lives there.

Filed Under: Agriculture, Corn, Cotton, Grains, Rice, Soybeans, Sweet Potatoes, Agri-tourism, Beekeeping, Equine, Goats and Sheep, Poultry, Swine, Turfgrass and Lawn Management, Vegetable Gardens, Forestry February 2, 2021

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Each February marks the occasion for producers to share their research and programming needs with Mississippi State University agricultural specialists in person.

To comply with COVID-19 social distancing guidelines, the opportunity will be extended virtually this year.

Filed Under: Landscape Design and Management, Landscape and Garden Design, Professionals Corner, Smart Landscapes, Turfgrass and Lawn Management February 1, 2021

The Mississippi State University Extension Service is leading a research project aimed at enhancing pollinator habitat in managed turfgrass of the Southeast.

Bright green burweed in a patch of dead grass.
Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Turfgrass and Lawn Management, Weed Control for Lawn and Garden, Weed Control January 14, 2021

Having “stickers” in your yard can be quite the nuisance. Stumbling upon a patch of stickers while walking barefoot is a painful experience. Plus it’s painful for your four-legged family members! Formally known as lawn burweed, these winter annuals are no fun to deal with.  

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Portrait of Dr. James Dewey McCurdy
Associate Professor
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