Scarify the lawn


Scarify the lawn

A lush green, dense lawn is the dream of many garden owners. But for such a lawn a consistent care program is an absolute prerequisite. In addition to watering, fertilizing and mowing, the lawn should be scarred once or twice a year.

This removes lawnfelt and air, light, water and food come back to the roots. Scarers are available in a variety of designs: mechanical, electric, gasoline-powered and as combination devices for scarifying and ventilating.

When, how and how to scarify your lawn depends, among other things, on the condition of the lawn, how old and how big the lawn is in total.

Everything about scarifying

  • Lawn condition: moss, turf felt and compacted soil
  • What is scarifying - airing - aerating?
  • How to scarify your lawn properly
  • Properly Scarifying: Tips and Tricks
  • Lawn by hand?
  • Which devices are there for scarifying?

Lawn condition: moss, turf felt and compacted soil

Before the exact treatment can be planned, you should take a closer look at your lawn. Which problems can be found? Moss, for example, can be easily removed by scarifying, but it will not last long if the cause is not detected and eliminated.

Scarifying removes moss and dead plant parts.

Scarifying removes moss and dead plant parts.

Possible causes of a heavily mossy lawn:

  • sour soil
  • too little fertilizer
  • wrong grass mixture for shadow areas
  • waterlogging

So please do a soil test, lime, fertilize, spruce, or even air and sand. More about this in the section Preparation and follow-up.

Lawn felt is a layer at the bottom of the lawn made of unrubbed plant parts (grass clippings), dead roots and cross-pollinated grasses, which in turn receive side shoots. If this layer is too thick and dense, this is not exactly conducive to the health of the lawn. In this moist layer mushroom spores have an easy game and it lacks light and air.

A compacted soil leads to waterlogging and therefore better conditions for moss. At the same time, however, the roots of the lawn may not get enough water and air.

The permeability of the soil is an important criterion for a rich, healthy lawn.

What is scarifying - airing - aerating?

The terms are very often used differently and a clear demarcation is actually difficult, since even the manufacturers of different devices have no uniform definition of terms.

A scarred lawn (right) gets air and water again.

A scarred lawn (right) gets air and water again.

The most well-known is the scarifying (by the way, in some places also called vertulieren, which is to be found as a minor form in the Duden). Here, the turf is cut up to 3 mm deep and with the knives moss and felt is simultaneously lifted from the lawn.

It is said to scar or ventilate lawn, and in part it means the same.

However, airing usually means combing out the turf - without cutting the turf. Lawnmowers have a kind of wire hook roller that combs the lawn. The terms are sometimes used interchangeably.

To make the confusion complete, the term of "turf-airing" is sometimes also used when it comes to the so-called aeration. This air holes are stabbed a few inches deep into the ground. In some devices even with small hollow tubes that eject the ausgechene earth.

How to scarify your lawn properly

Scarifying helps the lawn grow and provides even scarring. However, if not properly scarred, the lawn may be damaged. You should therefore follow basic rules.

Bald spots can be seeded well.

Bald spots can be seeded well.

  • Scarify only ingrown grass (2 - 3 years old, also applies to turf grass)
  • Once a year, it is best to scarify the lawn in autumn. If you scarify your lawn in the spring, please only from 8 degrees ground temperature. Twice a year only for the first treatment or after a long break.
  • Before you scarify your lawn, fertilize it a few days earlier (in dry weather, spray fertilizer manually) so that the lawn regenerates quickly.
  • Mow previously lawn to 2 - 3 cm and remove clippings.
  • Scarify the entire lawn in one direction only. With a lot of moss and / or lawn felt - for example, when using a scarifier for the first time or a break lasting years - once in the opposite direction (across). Otherwise change direction every year.
  • Break the lawn well.
  • Mow the lawn again with the grass catcher (the long, transversely growing stems are now erect and can be detected by the lawn mower). In addition, left-lying and relaxed lawn felt is "absorbed".
  • If necessary, break the lawn again.
  • Easy sanding, promotes the permeability of the soil.
  • Seize bald and thin spots with the appropriate grass seed mixture
  • Water the lawn thoroughly.
  • 2 - 4 weeks to keep the lawn closed and do not "burden" it.

Properly Scarifying: Tips and Tricks

Scarify the lawn: scarify

Scarify the lawn: your

  • Mow the grass once again as short as possible (cutting height about 3 cm)!
  • Fertilize moss! Best for this is a good iron fertilizer.
  • Scarify only on dry soil! On the one hand you save your scarifier and on the other hand you avoid too many tufts of grass being torn out.
  • Scarify in one direction only! Change the direction next year.
  • Scarify only after a long break in the longitudinal and in the transverse direction!
  • Seize bald spots.
  • Then water well!

Lawn by hand?

Air Lawn by Hand (aerify)

Air the lawn by hand

For small areas and good physical condition, it is quite possible to work through the lawn by hand with a scarifier. But it is exhausting and requires a concentrated approach.

The performance of an electric or gasoline powered verticulator is not only bigger, it also works more accurately.

These devices cut a maximum of 3 mm deep into the turf. When scarifying by hand, such a requirement would be unrealistic. Try to cut as little as possible into the ground with the tool - in any case less than 1 cm - otherwise you will damage the root system too much.

Which devices are there for scarifying?

There is a very wide and differentiated range of scarifiers for the most diverse needs.

  • Cutting rake or pendulum verticutter for scarifying by hand
  • Electric Scarifier
  • Petrol operated scarifier
  • Combination tools that have two rollers for replacement. One of them for scarifying with knives and one for airing with wire hooks, like the prongs of a leafy rake.
  • Scarifier with fixed or movable knives

    • Fixed knives are usually cheaper and more stable, but take more damage when hitting stones faster and give the impact effect on the drive shaft.
    • Movable knives require a more complicated construction, but are not so fragile and can be easily replaced.

Scarifier with fixed knives

Scarifier with fixed knives

Roller with moving blades

Roller with moving blades


Video Board: How to scarify a lawn