How Poor Drainage Can Affect Your Home And Garden

July 25, 2018 - Comment

Since 1901, rainfall in the States has increased by 0.17 inches per decade. Water is vital for the survival of your garden but in excess, it can become a problem. With some states like Texas and Hawaii experiencing record rainfall levels recently, ensuring that your house and garden are adequately prepared for downpours, flooding and burst

Since 1901, rainfall in the States has increased by 0.17 inches per decade. Water is vital for the survival of your garden but in excess, it can become a problem. With some states like Texas and Hawaii experiencing record rainfall levels recently, ensuring that your house and garden are adequately prepared for downpours, flooding and burst pipes is important.

As well as being unsightly, standing water around the house can become contaminated and plants steeped in water will drown and die. And although lawns need an inch of water a week to keep them looking lush, water logging will leave them unattractive, muddy and unusable.

Waterlogged lawns

Waterlogging is more like to occur on poorly prepared, compacted soil and especially on clay which is too finely grained to allow water to seep through easily. Spiking the lawn with a fork or aerator perforates the soil and creates drainage holes. This is best undertaken when the lawn is dry or excess water is swept away onto flower beds first. If the water logging is severe, the only solution is to relay the turf on a layer of sharp sand covered with a 6-inch layer of topsoil and plenty of organic matter to encourage worms.

Ensuring the lawn has a gentle slope of at least 6% will also help runoff to be diverted away from the house and the addition of French drains, gravel-filled trenches that direct water away from specific areas, can also help.

Blocked drains and contamination

Flooding and waterlogging are often complicated by inadequate rain gutters and downspouts. Regularly checking for damage or blockages is important especially if there are deciduous trees near the property. Domestic appliances and systems can also have an impact on the environment if waste pipes and drains are broken or become clogged. This can lead to detergents from washing machines or food from waste disposal units contaminating groundwater and entering local water systems.

Blocked drains can cause leaks that attract bacteria and pests and standing water is inviting to mosquitoes. Damp issues around the home are much easier to prevent than cure. Something as simple as a catch basin that traps sediment beneath a downspout can stop the damp created by blockages causing damage to foundations, walls or sidings.

Plants and trees

Too much water is just as bad for plants as none at all. If plants are drenched, the water can obstruct air supply to roots leading to root rot. Some root rot is also caused by mold but these too rely on sufficient surrounding moisture to spread. In order to avoid creating more waterlogging, careful consideration should be given to the removal of mature trees when redesigning an established garden.

A large tree can absorb up to 100 gallons of water a day so cutting one down can have a drastic impact on clearing runoff from your yard.

Regular checks of gutters, downpipes, and drains is essential to keep rainwater flowing away from the house, and the careful use of appliances will avoid contamination in the garden. Dealing with drainage issues should be a priority to ensure flourishing gardens, lush lawns, and dry, damp-free homes.


This video definitely goes into steps for creating permanent solutions for poor garden drainage problems

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