LAWN CARE – How to deal with pooling water in your yard.
Are you stuck with puddles and pools of water in your yard during rain or wet seasons? Worried about water creeping too close to your home or other structures? Try some of these tips to get your yard dryer, faster!
Stay off the lawn during soggy times
If your lawn is squishy, or you see pooling water, try to stay off your lawn until it dries. The standing water is already doing damage to the grass, so any additional trauma during heavy wet periods should be avoided. As hard as it can be if you’ve hit a wet season, resist the urge to mow your yard until it dries.
Often times pooling or puddling in the yard can be reduced by simply paying attention to your home’s gutter downspouts. During wet seasons consider downspout extension hoses that allow you to route the water to an area with better drainage, or to an actual street drain. For a permanent, and more visually pleasing option, you can also create a shallow trench using PVC pipe to reroute the water.
Aerate & dethatch your lawn
The number one cause for a flooded lawn is soil compaction. Grass clippings, high traffic areas, and compacted soil leave very little room for water to drain in to the soil.
Dethatching is the process of removing excess grass clippings, compacted leaves, etc. from your lawn. Multiple specific dethatching tools are available to make the job quicker and easier, or you can use a sturdy rake. Dethatching is best done in early spring or early fall. Do not dethatch in mid or late fall, your grass needs time to reestablish its roots system before the frost hits.
Aeration of your lawn is the process of putting small holes in the ground to help with drainage and encourages the right kind of flora and fauna to keep your lawn healthy and happy. There are multiple types of aerators available, we suggest talking with a Mimbach Associate to discuss your specific soil type to determine the best aerator for you. To properly aerate your lawn, you’ll want to be sure the hollow tines of the aerator get at least 1 ½ inches into the soil. Aeration in high traffic areas or areas with dense soils, like clay, should be done annually, in other areas or less dense soil types, it is recommended at every other year. (You can safely aerate several times a year if necessary.)
If you want to go a step further, you can lightly add some compost to the top of the lawn. The compost works into the holes created by the aeration process, and further promotes healthy soil that will reduce water pooling in your yard.
Create a rain garden
If the water seems to be pooling to a particular area of your yard, consider creating a rain garden in or near that spot. Rain gardens can be a great way to attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies as well. To create a basic rain garden, create a berm, highest on the downhill side of the garden, and slowly tapering off on the high side. The berm helps to keep collected water IN the garden. Chose plants, preferably native to your area, that can handle both very wet and dry conditions, with the plants handling the wettest at the center of the garden. (You can search online for the best rain garden plants in your area.)
Create a dry creek bed
Dry creek beds can be a great way to channel water away from structures since it starts at highpoints and moves the water to lower levels. Starting with where the water pools, you’ll need to build a channel, going downhill, to a spot where the water can runoff or drain. Line the channel with landscape frabric, then choose your favorite mulch and rock to create a visually pleasing creek bed. You can place plants around the creek bed to help keep it looking nice and adding another tool to absorb water.
Regrade your lawn
If all else fails, consider regrading your lawn. Regrading can be a big task, but well worth it if the water that is collecting in your yard is near your home or other permanent structures. Doing a regrade means a full survey of the property, lowering the high spots, raising the low spots, and moving all of the water away from property.
No matter which direction you choose to go, moving pooling water off your lawn, and away from your home and other structures, will create a healthier lawn and give you peace of mind.
Need some help determining what is the best option for your yard, or looking for the right tools for the job? Stop in to Mimbach Fleet where our sales associates can help you find the perfect tools to get the job done right.