The Garden

DIY - How to level out a yard

Does your yard have divots and bumps that can make it cumbersome to walk or run through? Are there areas that runoff have created unevenness in the yard? You might have said yes to either of those questions. In this article, we'll take a look at how to level out those holes and divots on your own without needing to hire a landscaper. For more major projects, a landscaping service might be necessary to perform the job well and safely.

First things first, it is always important to make sure water is running away from the foundation of the home. If you notice that this is not the case, please contact a landscaping service or other professional to fix that issue. Water to the foundation will cause serious problems down the road.

Tools that you will need to help level your lawn:

  • Lawn Mower

  • Thatch Rake or Dethatching Machine (if necessary)

  • Top Soil

  • Sand

  • Compost (if available)

  • Shovel

  • Bow Rake

Step 1: Mow your lawn. This will allow for you to see the unevenness and start with a "clean canvas."

Step 2: Determine the thatch level of the grass. It is near the surface of the ground. If it is too long (more than 1/2 inch), run a thatching rake or dethatching machine over the grass to loosen it, which will allow air and water to reach the roots.

Step 3: Create your lawn mixture. Take the sand, soil, and compost and create your lawn mixture. If compost is not available, make sure your top soil contains fertilizer nutrients. The mixture should be two parts sand, two parts soil, and one part compost. The sand helps to maintain the levelness of the yard because it doesn't compact easily.

Step 4: Dig up the divots. In the areas that have divots, take a shovel and dig further down... a few inches and then fill in the hole with the lawn mixture so that it's level. Then put the sod with the grass back on top.

Step 5: Spread the remaining mixture. Anything that is left over, spread over the remaining lawn to even everything out. Use a bow rake to help even it out and not create piles, which will cause the air to not reach the grass roots.

Step 6: Water the lawn. Plain and simple, water the lawn to help the mixture settle and jumpstart the nutrients in the soil.

Completing the above steps will help transition your lawn into a more even looking area. As the mixture settles, it might be something that you have to do more than once, but eventually your lawn will transform itself into one with beautiful curb appeal.

Go out and enjoy your yard today!

Source: Noonan, Jennifer. “How to Level a Yard in 7 Simple Steps.” Bob Vila, 3 May 2022,