How to Level an Uneven Lawn

How to Level an Uneven Lawn

Last Updated on October 31, 2021 by Phil

How to Level an Uneven LawnLawns that are well taken care of are lovely.

They’re filled with lush, green grass and look very even all over.

But, left untended, they can go south fairly fast.

This is also the case if your lawn experiences heavy foot traffic or is affected by the change in seasons.

Whatever the case may be, if you end up having a lawn that has bumps or craters, it’s time to fix things. Here’s how to level an uneven lawn.

What Causes Your Lawn to Be Bumpy?

Uneven lawns can happen naturally over time because of what happens to the surface. One common reason of some parts of your lawn dipping downward is foot traffic. If you always walk along the same path or work in certain areas the soil there will most likely flatten out over time.

This is also true for lawns that get a lot of visitors. If you entertain people regularly or have objects on some parts of the lawn like a grill or cart, these sections will start going down as time passes.

There’s also the weather. If water collects in certain areas it can make the area soft allowing soil to easily move outward. Then, there’s also snow, frosting and thawing as well as hot climates followed by rains. All of these sudden changes turn your soil from one texture to another which cause it to change in shape.

Finally, pets and other animals that dig in your own also cause these bumps.

How to Fix Uneven Lawn Indentations

Uneven lawns and their bumps are ugly to look at. From a visual standpoint, you don’t like seeing a lawn or garden with a lot of indentations.

In addition to looks, the are also a safety hazard. This is the case for deeper holes which can trip you up or cause you to sprain your ankle. It also makes mowing hard and results in uneven cutting of the grass.

Then there’s water and fertilizer distribution. One of the reasons gardeners like to level the soil is to allow for even distribution of water, sunlight and fertilizer.

So if you have a lawn that’s doesn’t look even, here are a few things you can do.

Check to See How Bad the Low Spots Are and Note Which Ones You’ll Fix

The first step is to analyze your lawn. The goal here is to figure out how bad or deep the indentations are. The lower the spots the more work you need to do fix them.

If you’re lucky, you may only need to do minor work to get your lawn back to even.

How to Fix Shallow Indentations in Your Lawn

Shallow lawns are the simplest to fix. If there isn’t a big indentation on any of the areas, this is your best bet. It is also a good choice if for holes that are shallow.

The solution to shallow indentations is topdressing. This is essentially filling the area that’s lower with extra soil to help even it out. Ideally, you want to use the same top soil as you that you already have.

In addition to topsoil, you can also use sand or compost. Or, mix all three. These are all elements that will help grass grow.

The goal here isn’t just to level the area, but also make it sustainable for grass or plants to grow.

With topdressing, it’s important to add little at a time. Half an inch is a good way to start. You can use less if the indentation isn’t as deep.

After you’ve added topsoil, it’s time to give your lawn some time to repair itself. Just like human body, it needs time to fix itself naturally. After a couple of weeks, you should see the lawn in better shape.

If it’s evened out, then your work is done. If there’s still some indentation, you can repeat the process and add another layer.

How to Level Moderately Uneven Lawns

For deeper holes, topdressing isn’t ideal. The reason is that the larger difference in height means you’ll need to wait a long time and repeat the topdressing process several times. This can be very tedious, especially for deeper holes.

The solution here is to “sweep the dirt under the carpet”. The method gets its name from what you’re about to do which is literally sweep dirt under the carpet, which is the sod.

To do this, the first step is to remove the sod. Depending on the shape of your hole, you may need to remove various square patches of sod. The idea is to take out the sod, then fill in the space under it with top soil.

So, the next step is to get a shovel and start adding dirt under into the hole. The goal is to fill the hole with enough top soil so it evens out with the surrounding areas.

When done, it’s time to replace the sod over the now even area. All you need to do now is water the area and let it fill out on its own.

How to Repair Deep Indentations in Your Lawn

If your lawn is filled with deep indentations and there are so many of them that either of the two previous methods don’t work, then it may be time to regrade your lawn.

This is a very extreme measure and only to be undertaken when filling under the sod doesn’t work. The reason is that it costs more and you’ll need to do a lot of work.

Then, there’s the task of making sure that the ground is level before starting over.

This is extreme because you need to figure out a new level ground or standard for your lawn. You’ll need to decide what the new even level is. And, from there start setting up your lawn all over again by planting the seeds.


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