Uneven lawn

What is the best way to level out depressions in my yard?

Areas of a lawn can become uneven over time, due to settling, drainage issues, and various natural and unnatural causes. If you’re wanting to level out these spots the first step will be finding the cause of the uneven spots.

Cause #1
The most common reason being trees were removed some time in the last  several years. As the tree stump and roots decompose, it creates a low spot where the mass of the tree's trunk was.
Solution #1
Apply about 2 inches of quality top soil in the low spot. Do not fully cover the grass, make sure the grass is visible, let it grow through the soil and keep adding this until it grows out.
What to Expect:
Unless the tree is done decomposing it will continue to decompose and cause a spot. Leveling this spot will be a continual process until it is done decomposing. Plan on repeating this process over time - 2 inches this season - then 2 next season over and over until the low spot is gone.

Cause #2
Another cause is a natural slope, the yard has never been graded, or a divot formed in the yard from when the house was built.
Solution #2
Assess how much grading needs to be done. Does your whole yard need to be regraded? Contact a Land Grading company to assist you with this. This process will require new sod.
What to Expect:
The proper way to re-grade starts with removing the topsoil from the problem area. Now adjust the subsoil by scraping away high areas and filling in low areas. Spread 2-inches of the reserved topsoil and till it into the first 2-inches of subsoil. This will help prevent drainage problems between the two layers of soil.

Cause #3
Vehicle or heavy equipment driving through the yard and creating ruts (generally for tree removal or landscaping enhancement service)
Solution #3
Topdressing with quality topsoil is your best solution for minor problems. Cut the lawn or affected area very short before topdressing. It’ll be easier to see the area and level the topsoil. Apply about 2 inches of quality top soil in the low spot. Do not fully cover the grass, let it grow through the soil and keep adding this until it grows out.
What to Expect:
After adding the topdressing, water the area to help settle it. If the area is still too low, let grass grow about 4 to 6 weeks, when another 2 inches of the soil can be added.

Cause #4
Although the least common for minor depressions in a lawn, sometimes the low spot is the worst case scenario - a sinkhole underground.
Solution #4
Contact a professional sinkhole remediation service. There are too many potential solutions based on size, scope, and proximity to buildings to give accurate advice on.

Bottom line, dumping a load of sand and shoveling it into holes isn’t the best practice. Be patient, even if it takes a couple of seasons to even out a really rough yard, fill in holes that used to be trees or other gaps in the ground.

If we can be of help with any of your landscaping project intall chores - please don't hesitate to reach out to us at (352) 378-LAWN or fill out our form at the top of the page!

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