Spring is on the way, and it will probably bring a fair amount of rain. Combine that with melting snow – assuming we get any – and we might start to think about drainage. Some of us cringe at the sight of rainfall, looking outside to see half of the yard engulfed in water. Others relish the fact that we live uphill from the neighbors or have handled the run-off with no problem in previous years. Regardless of which scenario in which you find yourself, drainage control is a major priority in every landscape.
Proper drainage control reduces or eliminates excess water in your landscape, which can help to protect your home from water damage and eliminate mosquitoes and other bugs that breed in the still water in your yard. There are several different options that can help to solve drainage problems. The difficult part for the homeowner is choosing the solution that will work best for their unique landscape. Here is a quick overview of several available options:
Positive grading uses the existing land contour or a manipulated version of existing contour to direct the water to a specific location. This is one of the most helpful solutions. However, manipulation of the site may require it to be accompanied by one of the other solution types.
CREEKBEDS AND SWALES
Creekbeds and swales are a more recent solution to correcting drainage problems. They’re filled with various-sized stones, and a few large boulders are added for additional aesthetics. Water is allowed to flow through creekbeds and swales, helping to control flooding and erosion.
Piping is typically used with downspouts or in “French drains” (also known as “freedom drains” during the W administration). This solution takes the water from a specific problem area and pushes it through a pipe to another location. At the new location, either positive grading takes over to disperse the water, or a collection area is developed to handle the water (see Sustainable Solutions).
Sustainable solutions are the up-and-coming answer in drainage control. They reduce the flow of water to storm drains from homes and businesses. Typically, these solutions work well in locations where water can be collected (and sometimes filtered) to be used for additional purposes throughout the landscape. Sustainable solutions not only reduce or eliminate excess water in your yard, but also benefit the environment by preventing pollutants from entering our watersheds.
Remember, each landscape is unique and may require a different solution or a combination of solutions to properly correct drainage problems.
Many thanks to Jeff Findley, our Landscape Designer from Professional Grounds
Kim Hannemann, Real Estate Consultant/Realtor®, Samson Realty
Cell: 703-861-9234 • Fax: 703-896-5055 • Email: KimTheAgent@gmail.com It’s Good To Have A Friend In The Business®
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