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Lawn Topdressing: Why, When, and How?

Your green lawn is losing its usual luster. But pulling up all of the grass is not a feasible solution every time this happens. So that’s where lawn topdressing comes in.

Lawn topdressing has been a part of organic lawn care for decades. Topdressing is done by spreading a layer of compost or sand over the grass. Lawn topdressing is a simpler yet effective way of improving your lawn health.

What Is Lawn Topdressing?

Lawn topdressing is basically spreading a 1/4 to 1/2 inch layer of organic material on your lawn to improve soil quality. It’s a process of reviving your lawn without pulling out the grass.

Organic materials such as compost, sand, or topsoil can be used for lawn topdressing. As the grass grows through the top layer, the compost or topsoil gets incorporated into the soil beneath. As a result, the soil quality improves with added nutrients, and the grass grows healthier.

Benefits of Lawn Topdressing

  • Improves soil quality
  • Soil productive properties
  • Increases water holding capacity
  • Grows healthy soil microbes
  • Lowers thatch growth
  • Smooths out uneven lawn
  • Lowers fertilizer usage

Lawn Topdressing Steps

  • Check the current pH level of your lawn soil.
  • Adjust the soil pH level.
  • Rake or aerate the thatch layer for better penetration.
  • Mow the grass as close to the soil as possible.
  • Remove thatch debris and grass clippings.
  • Prepare the topdressing material suitable for your lawn.
  • Spread the organic material thinly over the entire lawn or the desired section.
  • Gently rake and water the topdressed areas.


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