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How to level bumpy lawn

Hello all,

After a few lockdowns trapped indoors we’ve finally moved into our new home and we’ve got a garden! We haven’t got a clue what we’re doing so we’re learning everything from scratch.

One of our first jobs is levelling and reviving the lawn which is very bumpy and uneven. We also need to fill the gap left by removing the old path. The lawn is about 6x20m

I’ve attached some photos of the lawn. Obviously it needs cutting and weeding but can anyone please give us a bit of a step by step idiots guide to levelling out the lawn and getting it into decent shape? I’ve seen a few articles online but they seem quite varied in their advice and we’re not sure which would be best for our lawn.

Thanks in advance for any advice/tips



  • punkdocpunkdoc Posts: 14,609
    From those pictures you can't really tell whether it is just "hummocky" grass. Cutting it over the next few months might reveal a much flatter picture.
    How can you lie there and think of England
    When you don't even know who's in the team

    S.Yorkshire/Derbyshire border
  • It certainly feels like it’s the ground itself that’s bumpy rather than the grass but I’ll give it a rake and a mow on Friday and will see how it looks then 
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,353
    edited April 2022
    I agree - it's so long that it's impossible to judge from those photos.  :)
    If you have hollows and dips, the usual method is to fill with soil and re seed. That's the easiest way. Any seed should also be broadcast over the general area though, especially if you're removing the path,  so that it blends in. It will be difficult to match the seed up with what's already there.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,946
    edited April 2022
    Regular mowing over the next few months will be an inexpensive way to reveal the lawns potential. But don’t cut it  short,  at least to start with. Just take a little off with a sharp hover mower and leave for a week, then a bit more and see how it goes … a few sessions like that and come back to us with photos and show us what you’ve got to work on. 
    No point in ripping it all up if you don’t need to and all it needs is a bit of nurturing. I take it you’re not after a bowling green … 
    Good luck 😉 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Do people generally just fill the dips or do they also chop off the peaks if you know what I mean? And is there a max depth you can fill like that with soil?

    any ideas on how to match the seed to the existing grass? 
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,946
    edited April 2022
    If you need to reseed in the future then the best way is to scatter a little of the new seed over the whole lawn and that’ll blend in the new areas. 

    But I wouldn’t start levelling and flattening just yet … as I said above, some regular mowing will give the lawn a chance and you’ll be able to see it’s potential. 

    From the look of that grass it’s only been allowed to get longer fairly recently … there’s no seedheads and ‘hay’ which would indicate neglect in the summer months. I think that’s not too bad at all. I’ve restored much worse than that by not much more than regular careful mowing. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,353
    It would have to be a considerable dip if you had noticeable peaks. If so, then yes , you can remove the high bits, but it can be awkward. You'd then need to level with some topsoil. There's no real limit to depth if you're re seeding anyway. 
    I mentioned broadcasting seed in my earlier post, which is easier than trying to get an exact match with what you have.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Brilliant - thanks for your advice. I’ll give it a month or so first then to see how it gets on after being mowed. Plenty of other jobs to be getting on with in the meantime.
  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 10,102
    Be careful near the edges - the grass might have spread a bit into the borders and there might be plants coming up. It's up to you whether you want to resurrect any borders or just let the grass area expand.
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • Dave HumbyDave Humby Posts: 1,145
    Depending on how deep your hollows are and how high your bumps are then you can use the soil from one to fill the other. For 'instant' results where, for example the hollow is deeper than a couple of inches or so, then cut an X in the dip, peel back the turf with the aid of a spade, fill the hollow then reinstate the turf. Job done and no need for seed or to wait for the seed to germinate and grow-in.
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