How to Pull up Grass

How to Pull up Grass

A beautiful lush lawn is one of the best parts of anyone’s dreams. But it just so happens that after a certain time, it might actually overgrow. Alternatively, you might want to change it a little. But, in that case, you need to get rid of all the grass in the lawn! How to Pull up Grass? Now that’s exactly what we’re going to talk about today.

Hello and welcome to Turf Mechanic, where we advice you both on issues such as “How to Grow Grass on a Steep Hill” up to this one. In today’s article, we are going to show you How to Pull up Grass. We are going to discuss several methods, with the positive and negative aspects of each of them. We are also going to take a look at what you might want to do once you’ve cleared your lawn. So, let us get started already!

What are the methods you might want to use?

Getting rid of grass is one of the things that one has to do pretty often. So, it doesn’t come as a surprise to know that there are a lot of methods out there that you might be able to choose. Let us take a look at the main features and the main positive and negative aspects of the chief ones:

1. How to Pull up Grass Manually?

One of the first methods that might come to your mind is actually pulling up your grass by hand. This is the oldest  method on this list, and it is time-tested. It, however, does take a lot more effort and a lot more time, as one might understand.

However, if you actually have those at your disposal, this is one of the best ideas, because the result is permanent. Also, it causes no extra harm to the environment- so, there’s no this is actually a pretty good choice.

The main things you might want to do in order to pull up grass manually are:

  • Firstly, you need to actually wear gloves so that you don’t end up cutting your hands. Please keep in mind that some varieties of grass actually have sharp blades, and so you need to be careful. Covering your hands properly is essential before you go out to do it manually.
  • Secondly, it is really taxing to actually pull it out physically. So, be prepared to be tired and sweaty, if you plan to go this method. Endurance is essential if you want to approach it this way.
  • Thirdly, it is also really time consuming, so you might want to be patient. It might take a while depending on the overall size of your lawn, and so you must not run out of patience.
  • Know your grass. That’s really important in this case. With some sort of grasses such as the Bermuda, you might not be able to kill them just by pulling them out, since they can regenerate from their root. So, in those cases, you might want to shift to alternate methods.

2. How to Pull up Grass with Equipment?

Now, of course, you don’t always have to do it with hand, you have technology! You might want to use some equipment, especially heavy ones such as power tillers, to pull up the grass! This makes it substantially easier and significantly less time-consuming, making it the choice for many!

Quoting Lowes:

A tiller will make the work easier, but you’ll need a heavy-duty, rear-tine model. You can rent heavier equipment, such as a sod cutter, which will cut under the turf and slice it into strips. Roll up the strips for use elsewhere or just turn the sod upside down and let it compost.

Again, this method is also a good choice from the environmental perspective. The effects are generally short term and visible, which makes it a better choice from a long term perspective, because you keep the environment safe too!

Now, the main things to keep in mind when it comes to this process are as follows:

  • First of all, this method is a little expensive because you have to rent out heavy-duty equipment. Naturally, this is a little less expensive if you already own them, but not everyone owns them (obviously) and that makes it a little less expensive.
  • This method is also one of the fastest. This is owing to the fact that you have your results the moment you’re done. You won’t be as slow as doing the job manually, nor would you have to wait like you would need to after using herbicides. That makes this process among the fastest ones.
  • This method is less exhausting owing to the fact that the machine is doing most of the work. While you are still having to take the stress and run the machine, and those are admittedly exhausting, it still is less exhausting than the other methods out there.
  • The process depends on the specific tool you’re using. For example, power tillers, sod cutters, hydraulic mini-dozers all work at least slightly differently. So, the exact things you need to keep in mind depends on the specific machine/tool of your choice.

3. How to Pull up Grass? Try Solarization!

Another method that you might want to use is solarization. While this is not exactly “pulling up” the grass, it still gives a pretty similar effect. In this method, you actually kill the grass by ending up cooking it. Don’t believe me? Well try these following steps and see for yourself!

  • First of all, you need to wait for summer. I know this sounds like a lot- but this makes this process work. This process only properly works in summer, so you need to wait if you want to try this out.
  • Next, you need to make the whole area saturated with water. Keep in mind that this is really important to do. You need to use a lot of extra water. Basically, make your entire garden one big puddle filled with water, and you’re good to go. Click here to find out what’s the ideal amount of water the plants look for, using extra is essential, even if you can’t make a puddle.
  • Next, cover the whole place up with a plastic sheet. Keep in mind that this sheet should be intact and not-damaged. The water vapor should not be able to pass through this sheet.
  • Now, you need to leave this setup under the hot summer heat for a couple weeks. In a couple weeks, you’ll find that the grass has been cooked, and this would actually make things a lot simpler for you.
  • Then, you might want to take off the covering, and get to work with pulling out what remains of it. You’ll find that the grass are mostly dead, and the soil has been loosened as well.
  • And since this is not a really fast process, this is much less harmful for the beneficial bacteria and insects that live in the soil, since they can escape. So, in the long run, this process is environment friendly as well!
See my full grass growing guide here for more helpful tips – no opt-in needed.

Alternatively, you might want to use Herbicides if it comes to that.

Again, in some cases, as was the case in my home, some of these methods might not just kill the grass entirely. Alternatively, you might not be able to use all these methods at home. For example, I wasn’t able to use a power tiller or any other heavy-duty tool.

In a case like that, and it is recommended that only after you’ve tried everything else, you might try this out. You might finally decide to go to the store to get some herbicide to finally get rid of the grass that is pestering you. Keep in mind that this is not a good process, because it harms the environment in the long run, and so you might want to avoid it for as long as possible. But, if entirely unavoidable, it’s the final resort.

Quoting FineGardening:

Too often in our dealings with nature, unanticipated effects of chemical use have been discovered only later.

The main things you might want to keep in mind in this case are:

  • First of all, you might want to watch out for when the rains are coming. You really don’t want to use the herbicide just before that until you want to waste your herbicide. So, that’s something you must keep in mind.
  • Again, you need to select your herbicide properly. There are several herbicides that work with only specific kinds of plants. Be sure that you don’t end up going for one that does not affect grass at all! So, be careful when selecting your herbicide and ensure that you select one for grass.
  • Third, this process actually isn’t as fast as it seems. First of all, the herbicide takes time to work properly. And secondly, you might need to use it several times in order to get rid of the grass. Keep in mind that most herbicides don’t affect the roots, while most grasses can regenerate from there. This means, you might have to continuously use it for a while in order to get rid of the grass. So, you would have to cultivate patience in this case as well.
  • Also, keep in mind that herbicide only kills the grass- it does not remove it. You still have to use the manual or mechanized methods to actually remove the grass. The grass, however, once dead, will provide you with almost no resistance. Yet, keep in mind that this method would not loosen the soil, and you might need to make it wet in order to pull out the dead grass.
  • And finally, this is one of the least recommended methods because of the harm it causes to the environment. It actually harms the other plants, the creatures living in the soil such as insects and earthworms, and even the soil itself. Having to use it is a sad thing in itself and thus, it’s rightly one of the least recommended things out there.


In conclusion, it could be said that there are a lot of methods that you can use. You, however have the last say when it comes to deciding which method you might go for. We recommend you to keep your specific details in mind while you select your method. That is the best idea, because only then will you be able to really do what you’re planning to do.

We, however, would like to ask you to try the other methods before using the herbicides. While you might have to use them at the end of the day- it’s worth a shot to try the other ones first. This is so, because as we said earlier, it really harms the environment. So, you might really try the other methods out- you always have this one if they don’t work out as you want them to.

Turf Mechanic is here for you!

We are really grateful that you took your time to read this article till the very end. We really hope that you could learn of something new that you would be able to apply in your lawn. And, we also hope that you would finally be able to get the perfect lawn that you’ve been dreaming of. Work hard without losing sight of your dreams, and you will surely achieve it!

We understand that you might still want to ask us a few questions- and we look forward to that. Please feel free if you have any queries, we are always eager to hear from you. We are always on the lookout for opportunities to help you with the best information we can! So, please do hesitate in reaching out to us if there’s anything at all that you want to discuss with us.

Once again, we thank you for reading this article till the very end. We hope that you liked it, and would be here with us on our upcoming articles  as well. Till then, Turf Mechanic wishes you a great day!