How to Level a Lawn

Greensleeves Blog | 21 September 2021
How to Level a Lawn

There can be many reasons why your lawn isn’t level and it can also cause many problems to your lawn if it isn’t levelled out. A lumpy or uneven lawn can be difficult to mow and maintain, and water can sometimes have difficulty draining in an uneven lawn. We’ll explain the causes and solutions on how to level a lawn. 

Why is My Lawn Uneven?

There are many reasons why your lawn might not be the flat, perfect shape that you’d like it to be. Some of the main reasons include animals, surface water in winter, and children playing on the lawn. Animals are the most common cause of an uneven lawn, as they will search through your lawn for food. Pooling surface water in winter can cause damage and lumps. If you’ve noticed that water throughout the colder months has caused problems in your lawn, talk to your local lawn expert about checking the drainage of your lawn. Finally, the family running around and playing on the lawn can cause it to become uneven.

Levelling Shallow Areas

For shallow areas, typically only 1-2cm lower than the rest of your lawn, you can apply a top dressing directly. Put a thin layer over the problem area and spread it across evenly. Push the soil down to compact it with your feet or a flat side of a rake. Water the soil a little and leave it to settle. After a few days you can then add grass seed and another light layer of topsoil. Pat it down gently and give it a light spray of water regularly to help the grass seeds to germinate. Allow the grass to grow and fill in the shallow hollows in your lawn.

Levelling Larger Lumps or Hollows

For the parts of your lawn that are deeper than 2cm, you will have to adopt a different method to the one described above. Make sure your lawn is moist, but not too wet, before you try this. You’ll need a squared off shovel, to cut into the centre and beyond the edges of the area in a cross shape. Keep these cuts as even as possible to make it easier to lift the turf back. Cut into the lawn to a depth of around 4-5cm, then slide the shovel underneath each section of the cross horizontally. Try to keep the shovel flat so that the soil stays even across the section. Peel back the edges of the turf and then either dig out the excess soil or add extra soil depending on the type of unevenness you are tackling. If you are removing soil, make sure to flatten it back down then fold the turf back over. If you are adding soil into a hollow, turn over the soil and remove any large lumps or stones. Compact the soil and then fill it with more topsoil. Rake it once more then fold the turf back over.

Push the turf back down, starting from the outside and working in towards the centre. Fill in any gaps between the cuts with top dressing and you can always add more lawn seed to fill out the lawn. Water the area regularly once this is done to keep it healthy and growing.

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