How to Sift a Dirt Pile Using Screen


You can sift a pile of dirt in your yard to remove rocks, clods and weed clumps. Sifting produces nice, floury dirt for gardens or lawns. You can repurpose the rocks that you sift out to edge flower beds; clumps of sod can go into the compost.

Things You'll Need

  • 2-by-4s
  • Saw
  • Hammer
  • Drill
  • Nails or wood screws, 3 inches
  • 1/4-inch screen
  • Heavy-duty stapler
  • Shovel
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Bucket
  • Cut two 20-inch and two 36-inch 2-by-4s. Construct the frame by nailing or drilling the boards to make a rectangle. Nail or screw the longer board to the 20-inch board, leaving 6 inches free on each side for handles, so that the rectangle formed is 20 by 24 inches.

  • Attach the 1/2-inch screen to the boards with a heavy-duty stapler.

  • Place a wheelbarrow or bucket under the sifter. Shovel in two to three full loads of dirt.

  • Move the sifter back and forth so that soil falls through the screen and into the container below. Rocks or debris should stay on top.

  • Move the rocks to another area or bucket. Discard the clumps of weeds and grass.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure the nails or screws you use are long enough to attach securely to the other boards.
  • Make sure your screen is attached securely.
  • Make sure to take breaks while sifting, as back strains are possible.

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  • Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/ Images
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