How To Scarify A Lawn?

Last Updated on December 19, 2023

Scarification is one of the most important parts of lawn maintenance. The process keeps your lawn healthy and free from weeds. Scarified lawn looks terrible, but you will start noticing positive improvements within a few weeks. Here, we will discuss how to scarify your lawn and when should you scarify a lawn.

How To Scarify A Lawn?

When to Scarify a Lawn UK?

Scarifying the lawn is beneficial only if you do it at the right time. Follow the process at the wrong weather and you might destroy the lawn or it will look nothing less than an eyesore for a long time. Do not try scarifications if the conditions are too cold, super-hot or if there is a drought in your area. Start the process when the weather is comfortable and you are expecting some rainfall.

When to Scarify a Lawn UK

You can scarify your lawn lightly to remove the moss. But, you should do it around April (Springtime) before the temperatures go high. If you follow the process late in the season, then there are chances that your lawn might not be able to recover properly.

If you need to perform heavy scarification, then Autumn is better. Such activity will expose the lawn and leave it thin in any season. But, this is the right time to sow some seeds on the blank spots. Now, you know when to scarify your grass UK, but let’s see how to do it.

How to Scarify Your Lawn?

After determining the best time to scarify lawn UK, you need to follow certain steps for lawn preparation. The first step is to cut the grasses short. So, start bringing the grasses down one or two weeks before starting the scarification process. The main idea is to reduce the cut the grasses without shocking them.

Get Rid of the Weeds

Remove the weeds by hands. You can also use a weed puller to remove perennial weeds. Do not use chemical-based weed killers because they can interrupt seed germination after scarification.

Use a Rake or Scarifier

You have three ways to scarify the lawn; use a manual scarifier or rake. Wear leather gloves before you start the process. Do not apply strong pressure on the lawn. Keep it moderate and it will remove all the moss and thatch from your yard.


Using a rake for lawn scarification is good for your muscles, but it’s time-consuming. For quick and efficient results, you can use a wheeled scarifier. If you are using a mechanical scarifier, then move ahead in once direction and take at different angles to avoid excess damage. After covering the entire lawn, you can collect the debris using a rake and dispose of them.

The third option is to use a scarifier cum aerator that can collect the debris as well. An electric or petrol powered tool can take care of all the moss and thatch in our lawn, without any physical effort. You only have to guide the machine and change its height according to the requirements. You should adjust the height after turning off the tool.


Cover the entire lawn going forward in a single direction to remove all the thatch. Change the direction in the next pass. For instance, if you were working south to north for the first time, then move west to east this time. You can lower down the blades in the second pass. Don’t rush or apply too much pressure in case you are using a rake. Your motive is to revive the lawn, not to massacre it.

What to do after Scarifying the Lawn?

Once you scarify the lawn, help it to recover. So, the first step is to add a moss killer like ferrous sulphate, especially if you notice a lot of moss. The next step is to add some grass seeds. Sprinkle the seeds all over the lawn and required you can also use a fertilizer. Use something that contains potassium, which can reduce the stress brought by scarification.

If you are scarifying the lawn in the autumn, look for an Autumn lawn feed fertilizer. On the other hand, you should apply a spring and summer fertilizer if you are following the process in spring. Finally, you need to water the area in case natural rainfall is not helpful. You don’t have to worry if it rains within a couple of days.

Final talk

Knowing how and when to scarify lawn UK is important to keep it healthy. Be gentle on the surface, even if you lower down the blades. You can try a rake, manual scarifier or powerful petrol-based scarifier to complete the scarification. But, keep in mind that the first two tools are more tender to the soil.

Mustafizur Rahman

Hi there! I'm Mustafizur Rahman, a real dirt-under-the-nails gardener with over 09 years spent in nurseries. After flexing my green thumb for years, I decided to share my knowledge and love for gardening with everyone. That's how was born! Here, I put my City & Guilds Horticultural qualifications to good use, writing reliable guides and giving honest reviews of the best gardening tools and products. So, you can skip the research rabbit hole - I've done the digging for you!