Lawn Scarification is a process perhaps best described as a mechanical raking of the lawn; its primary purpose is to remove thatch from the lawn, although it has associated benefits as well. The machine used by your Greensleeves lawn expert has a series of sharp tungsten blades that rotate at high speed and cut into the turf in a vertical manner. The depth can be adjusted to remove as much or as little thatch as required. This machine and process should not be confused with the typical machine available on the domestic market, which is more of a lawn rake. You will get a much more effective treatment with our intensive machine than you would using a DIY machine. Our lawn scarification process will thin out and remove the excess thatch and moss invasion that has built up within a lawn.

What to expect

Your lawn treatment expert will arrive on a pre-arranged date to carry out your scarification lawn treatment. The length of time that your treatment will take is very much dependent upon the size of the area to be treated and the condition of the lawn. Scarifying a lawn creates a large amount of debris but do not be alarmed, this will all be cleared and removed by your lawn expert leaving you with a tidy lawn. To explain the process fully we have created the video to the right to show you what you can expect from the treatment.

Why do I need lawn scarification?

A lawn that has developed a large amount of thatch or moss needs to be scarified to remove as much of this material as possible, allowing the grass space to grow. An excessive thatch layer (typically more than 12 - 20mm,) can restrict the movement of air, water, fertiliser and other materials to the roots of the grass, all of which are necessary for healthy turf growth. Scarifying should be carried out at a time when the grass is growing actively to allow it to recover from this rigorous process, usually autumn through to spring time. It is advisable, although not essential, to carry out scarifying before a fertiliser treatment as this will greatly speed the rate of recovery from the process.

What is thatch?

Thatch is a naturally occurring layer within your lawn comprising of dead and live grass, leaves, root stems and moss, which is present between the base of the grass stems and the soil bed below. A small amount of thatch in a lawn is considered healthy as it aids its resilience. However, it is easy for this layer to become too thick and affect the health of the lawn. Your lawn treatment expert will take a core sample from your lawn and will be able to show you the layer of thatch present within the lawn. If it is deemed to be too thick they will discuss a course of action with you.

How often does my lawn need scarifying?

All lawns are different in their characteristics and it is therefore very difficult to predict how often to scarify a lawn. There are a number of factors that will affect the frequency required. If a lawn contains large amounts of thatch and/or moss it may need a number of treatments to reduce the level to be manageable. Different grass types tend to produce more thatch than others and therefore need scarifying more frequently. As a general rule, Greensleeves advise that a lawn should preferably be scarified every year, but for specific advice please discuss with your lawn manager who will be able to look at your individual circumstances.

We remove all debris from your lawn created as a result of scarifying!

Receive PDF

To be emailed a handy document containing further advice, please complete the form below:

Please tick this box if you would like us to contact you by email with information about our services, news and offers which we feel may be of interest to you. View Privacy Policy.



Scarification Diagram - Click to enlarge



To book your scarification treatment, call us on 0808 1001413 or

Annual Essential Treatments

Our annual essential lawn care treatments are designed to tackle specific issues your lawn may face.

Scarification Treatment


An intense raking of the lawn to remove excess thatch and improve condition.

Aeration Treatment


The removal of plugs from the lawn to reduce compaction and improve drainage.



The application of grass seed to a lawn to fill in and repair bare areas resulting from damage.

What Our Customers Say About Us