How to Get Gravel Out of Your Grass

Nothing is more annoying than looking into your lawn and seeing a clump of gravel on your precious turf. Whether deposited by an animal, vehicle, pedestrian, or storm, that pile of rocks needs to be taken care of.

Key Points:

  • Removing gravel from grass is important for landscaping and garden equipment as well as to keep the lawn healthy and attractive.
  • There are multiple ways to get gravel out of the grass, such as using a shop vacuum, metal leaf rake, or employing professionals.
  • Gravel in the grass can cause problems such as soil compaction and death of turf, so it’s best to use the right tools to remove it safely.

Gravel in the grass is unsightly, unmowable, and can lead to the death of turf, so quick actions are a must to keep your lush lawn green. 

Before you break your back or cut up your hands, grabbing handfuls of gravel and tossing it back on the path, you should look into some of the most cost-effective and efficient ways to remove landscape rocks from your grass.

Read on to learn how I have successfully gotten pea gravel and other stones out of my lawn and how much it will cost to have a professional do it for you. 

Can Gravel Be Removed from Grass Safely?

Removing gravel should be done as leaving it can be a safety issue for landscaping and garden equipment. You can safely remove gravel using the right tools and ensure you are up to the task.

If there is too much gravel to move, then you should consider hiring professionals to do the job and avoid risking injuring yourself. 

You will need several types of tools to safely remove all the gravel and restore the visual appeal of your lawn. This is especially important if you have a gravel drive running along your turf.

You will want to collect the pear gravel into piles and move them with a shovel or other collection method. Avoid bending over and over, or you may experience back injuries or other problems from over-exertion. 

What’s the Best Way to Get Rocks Out of Grass?


The best way to remove gravel from grass is to utilize a range of tools and methods to make the job easy and efficient. Having the right tools on hand is great, but there are also several tools that can be rented for the day that makes clean-up a breeze.

Even better, you can call a gravel removal company if you don’t have the time or expertise to deal with the problem yourself. 

Once you have your tools or crew, make sure to work quickly and safely to prevent extra compaction and additional issue to your already struggling turf. Once gravel has been removed and returned to its proper place, you will want to aerate and treat affected areas of the lawn.

Removing gravel from grass can damage your turf, so use the proper methods to get rocks out in the best way. 

Is the Gravel in My Grass Harmful?

There are no benefits to grass by having gravel in lawn spaces, and plenty of reasons why it isn’t a good idea. Even though gravel drives can be a cheaper way to create pathways, erosion during snow and rain, as well as rocks kicked out of a gravel drive, can end up in your lawn.

Piles of gravel can quickly kill grass and lead to bad soil conditions. Gravel particles can have clay residue, and too much might lead to soil compaction in already clay-containing earth. 

Removing gravel can also cause damage to your lawn. Removing gravel by hand can be gentle, but large piles of gravel or several feet of gravel spread out could take far too long.

Trying to use a metal leaf rake may prove ineffective as the thin tines cannot drag the gravel the way bow rakes can. Other methods can leave turf torn, roots damaged, or the rocks around and not get them back to your gravel driveway at all. 

Rock Removing Tools

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There are many awesome tools to help you work with frequent gravel types that have ended up in your grass. With so many options, you can be sure that you will find some way to get gravel away from your grass blades and back to where it belongs.

Little stones that find their way into your yard and get stuck to the soil and dirt can be annoying, but the tools below can get them out. 

Hands The most accurate and the only way to really get all the gravel and not harm the turf however it is slow and labor intensive and not practical for anything other than the smallest of spillsPut gardening gloves on, then place a bucket or wheelbarrow near the pile and lift the stones up until there are no more in the dirt and your grass is pebble free 
Power BroomUsed to dethatch the soil a couple of times a year in some grass types, these tools can also help to collect gravel and get it to the edges of your yard Operate the power broom in the same way you would for annual dethatching but move slowly and deliberately when going over the areas with piles of rock                          
Bow RakeStronger than a leaf rake, a bow rake will move gravel with tines that don’t let gravel through; they are often equipped with a straight metal bar that can drag gravel that has been collected Use the landscape rake to move gravel in lawns to a pile near the gravel path, then use the back side of the rake to return the pieces of gravel to the gravel walkway
ShovelGood when working on gravel patios or places without much vegetation as a flat shovel may damage grass but can help with scooping piles until they reach the soil levelThe shovel process can be hard, and tools like a flat shovel may dig into the dirt, but a scoop shovel can be more gentle; shovels work better on short blades vs. tall grass and are a more efficient option than simple hand tools 
Push BroomA stiff-bristled push broom can move individual and small groupings of gravel through a lawn without uprooting the grassUse short choppy motions to create a pile of gravel that can be collected or to push the pea gravel drive back onto the path 
Pressure WasherUsing water to move rocks and clean debris out of your yard is a useful method, but a water force too strong can cause soil erosion while trying to get a clean yardUsing a power washer to blast small pebbles to the edges of the yard can work in sparse grass but will not move decorative rocks in thick turf and can send small and medium-sized rocks hurtling out of your yard at high speeds 
Shop VacuumA great solution when rock mulch or heavy gravel has ended up in the grass, and you want to pick it up quickly; a strong shop vacuum will not harm your turf and can quickly get rid of small pebbles in the dirtFor quick landscape rock removal or moving a decent quantity of gravel, you can wheel the vacuum over, plug it in and suck up all the stones; empty it wherever you need the rocks most, and then continue until all the gravel is gone
Backpack BlowerThis is a must-have if your path is a loose gravel driveway, as a simple pass with the blower can put the stray rocks in the lawn back on the pathUsing the lowest setting, point the nozzle at the pebbles you want to move and slowly increase the power until the rocks gently glide and roll to their destination; avoid blasting gravel at full throttle, as you may shoot more into your lawn than you are able to remove 

Can I Pay to Have Gravel Removed from My Yard?

Of course, if you would rather just have someone else take care of the mess, that is a great option too.

Most landscaping companies will offer so options for you, even if it means just having a crew rake and shovel it out; not all that different from what you would do yourself, just with more experienced manpower.

Other specialized gravel companies may have superior methods and can get the gravel out in a shorter period of time with far less stress to your turf. Whatever professional route you decide to take is going to cost you a bit; check below to find out more.  

Removal Types

You can have a crew suck up the gravel, rake the gravel, or sweep the gravel, but in the end, they will work quickly and effectively. Depending on the size of the clean-up needed, anything from blowers and suckers to lawn and garden tools, to commercial machinery can all be utilized to get the rocks out of your grass.

Additional costs will need to be included for hauling the rocks away or taking them for disposal. 


If you hire a professional gravel removal company, you can expect to pay around $50-$200 per cubic yard. A landscaping crew may be cheaper but might not do the job to the same standard as the specialists.

If you are not sure how many cubic yards of gravel you are dealing with and need another option to calculate the cost, a safe average is about  $40-$150 per hour.

Whether you hire a gravel moving company depends a lot on your specific situation. While the job will get done faster and not be put off indefinitely until the grass underneath dies, it may be more of an expense than you can cover at the time.

Ideally, you would be able to get the job done quickly with tools you already have, but you can also rent equipment or work with a company to get the job done cheaper due to your accommodations. Whatever route you choose, you must remove gravel from your grass right away, or your lawn could be in trouble. 

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