Scarify The Lawn: Spring Or Fall?

Scarify The Lawn: Spring Or Fall?

The cold winter season and hot summer months put any lawn to the test. With the help of dethatching, garden owners can significantly improve the appearance and growth of their lawn. This maintenance measure contributes significantly to the regeneration of the grass plants. The correct sequence and timing are just as important as the technical execution. Afterwards, the dense lawn carpet shines again in a rich green tone.

Dethatching correctly

During the growing season, many types of debris accumulate on the lawn. These include old lawn clippings, wildly growing weeds and rampant moss. Over time, these components compress into a dense mass that makes it difficult for water to be absorbed. It also results in a reduced quality of the soil. Subsequently, the grass roots do not receive enough oxygen, and the supply of nutrients also deteriorates. As a result, the lawn looks sickly, lean and unkempt. The phenomenon is usually noticed as early as spring, when only a few grasses begin to grow sporadically. As a countermeasure, scarifying the lawn has become established. However, it is not recommended to perform this method too often. Otherwise, the grass plants will suffer instead of looking healthier.

  • Important maintenance measure for the grass area
  • Enables healthy appearance
  • Can be used as a rejuvenation and recovery treatment
  • Removes clover, moss and weeds
  • Matted lawns are combed out
  • Subsequently, grass roots can breathe better
  • Nutrient supply of the roots is optimized
  • Grass plants grow more lush and dense again
  • Do not use the scarifier more than twice a year
  • Ideally in spring and autumn

Use in spring

Rasen vertikutieren im Frühjahr

A good time for scarifying is spring. At this time of year, the soil and the lawn have a particularly fast regeneration capacity.

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Scarify The Lawn: Spring Or Fall?

However, this measure should not be carried out directly at the beginning of spring. After the cold winter months, the grass plants are still weakened and react sensitively. In addition, the soil must no longer be frozen at the time of scarifying. Pleasantly warm temperatures are important so that the grasses can regrow promptly. On the other hand, the lawn carpet suffers from intense heat and drought in the summer months, so that it can not recover sufficiently afterwards. In addition, at the beginning should always be fertilizing to sufficiently strengthen the grass plants. In addition, the procedure should follow a certain sequence, so that the lawn is well prepared.

  • Ideal for this step of care is the month of April.
  • After long winters perform only in May
  • The soil must be completely thawed
  • The soil must not be completely dry
  • It is good that the soil is slightly moist
  • Dry weather is ideal
  • Temperatures of 10-20 °C are good
  • Use nitrogenous fertilizer beforehand
  • Then mow the lawn at least twice
  • Do it only in dry weather
  • Lawn will grow more beautiful and lush green in summer
  • Dispose of any plant material on the compost heap
  • Re-sow grass seed in bare spots

Note: Before reaching for the scarifier, make sure that there will be no more hard frosts in the following days. no more hard frost periods are to be expected in the following days.

Carry out in autumn

Rasen vertikutieren im Herbst

After the often very hot and also dry summer months, the lawn often looks very puny. As a result, brown and bare patches have formed. Therefore, the procedure of scarifying can be implemented quite well even in autumn. Especially if the lawn carpet has been used intensively and mowed frequently, the use of the scarifier is necessary. During this time of year, the growing season in the garden is nearing its end. The plants begin to properly prepare for the winter. By freeing the lawn from moss, plant debris and weeds, an expedient preparation for the cold season takes place. However, between the first and second part of the annual dethatching must always pass a few months, so that the grasses are not overly stressed.

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The first real autumn days are optimal

  • Perform earlier after rather cool summer months
  • As early as mid to late August
  • Start later following warm summers
  • Not until the beginning to the middle of September
  • Dry weather is ideal, with residual heat in the soil.
  • Wait for long periods of rain.
  • Afterwards, the wetness of the winter can run off better.
  • Danger of compaction is reduced
  • Then work in winter fertilizer
  • Fertilizers with potassium are optimal
  • Strengthen the resistance of the grasses

Tip: Scarifying should be done by mid-October at the latest. Otherwise, the grasses will not have enough time to regenerate before the onset of winter.

Instructions: Scarify

Rasen vertikutieren: Anleitung

Who treats the lawn every year this convalescent cure, receives a densely growing lawn carpet with a healthy turf. Subsequently, the grass surface shines in a lush green, without moss and mulch of the previous months. However, this method does not make sense if a lot of rain has fallen.

If the soil is too wet, the scarifier can quickly pull out the entire turf. In this way, there will be unsightly gaps afterwards. In addition, never use it on freshly planted lawns. In addition, it is essential to avoid setting the scarifier too deep. If the result was not satisfactory in the spring, it is better to repeat the procedure in the fall after a rest period of several months. As a rule, the lawn carpet is first scarified in a longitudinal direction. The next time the treatment follows in the transverse direction.

  • Lawn must have grown for at least 2-3 years
  • Prerequisite is deeply cut grass
  • Maximum height must be 4 cm
  • Grasses must be absolutely dry
  • Set the required height of the blades on the scarifier
  • Suitable cutting depth is approx. 3 mm
  • In case of extremely matted and overgrown areas go deeper
  • Then a cutting depth of 5 mm is ideal
  • Work the grass area in evenly spaced lines
  • Alternate direction each time
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Tip: A short test run with the scarifier will tell you whether the machine is working accurately and is set correctly. A section of the lawn that is not very visible is suitable for this.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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