How to Improve Lawn Drainage

flooded lawn

Is your lawn turning into mud after a bad winter? Is the grass always wet under your feet? Your lawn may have problems with drainage. This is something that is very common and thankfully, it is an issue that you can fix yourself without having to get professional help. There are a number of ways you can improve the drainage of your lawn. So, let’s take a look at them and what might be the best option for you.

Reasons for Bad Drainage

There are many reasons why your yard might be experiencing bad drainage. First of all, let’s see what these reasons are so that you can understand the problem.

Incorrect Automatic Sprinklers

If you have a large lawn, you probably have automatic sprinklers. This is going to give your grass the water it needs after a day of sunshine. Just as too little water can be a problem for your lawn, so can too much water. Indeed, if you have an automatic sprinkler that is giving your grass too much water, this can cause pooling. This might be how your lawn is so wet under your feet and becoming muddy. If you think this might be the root of your problem, try watering your lawn less to see if this makes a difference to the drainage.

Bad Grading

Perhaps your poorly draining lawn is not your fault or due to any of your actions. In fact, it could be caused by the builders of your home. Bad grading of your yard can mean that water slope to areas of your lawn. This is especially true if there is no water outlet present. For example, if you have low points in your backyard that are pooling with water, this might be caused by bad grading.

Compacted Soil and Thatch

If the soil underneath your lawn is compacted, this is going to mean that water drainage is slow or non-existent. We have some solutions if this is the problem. In addition, you want to ensure that there is no thatch build-up on your lawn. This can also mean that the water finds it hard to drain through.

Heavy Clay Soil

Does your yard have heavy clay soil? This is often the cause of a badly draining lawn. Rainfall and water are not able to pass through clay soil as easily. So, when it is wet, it becomes heavy and muddy. Unfortunately, this causes bad drainage problems, especially if this is what is underneath your whole lawn. One way you can improve this is by trying to mix the clay soil with manure and garden compost. This can help with drainage. Our other drainage solutions below are also going to be beneficial.

Ways to Improve Your Drainage

Everybody wants a luscious and green lawn. So, if you are having problems with your drainage, this is going to be frustrating. But the good news is that there are ways you can improve drainage. Plus, they are do not always have to cost a fortune either. So, let’s take a look at ways to improve your drainage.

Aerate the Lawn

One of the easiest ways you can improve the drainage for your lawn is through aeration. This process of spiking the grass allows air to get into the soil. This can help if your lawn gets waterlogged during bad weather. It is a simple task that you can do on your own. There are aerators that you can buy to run over the grass and this will create small holes. You can then fill them with sharp sand to help with the drainage. This can help to avoid the soil becoming compacted. If you are on a budget, you can also create holes in your lawn with a fork.

Install a Land Drain

Is your lawn bad after every storm or after a long winter? Perhaps it is time to take drastic action and install a land drain. This is a process that can allow water to move through the soil more efficiently. It will involve digging a trench so that you can insert the land drain. If your lawn is very bad, you will need to create several trenches. The purpose of the drain will be to move the water and channel it to a part of your lawn that has better soil or to a ditch. However, If you are looking for a quick solution, one which will not impinge on your Netflix, TV or online casino time, then this might not be it. It will take some time but it can be done without a professional. However, if you prefer spending your time with leisure activities, call in a professional.

Create a Ditch

Another way you can improve the drainage of your lawn is to create a ditch at the lowest point. This allows for a place for the rainwater to run off after a bad storm. It will prevent it from just sitting on top of your lawn. This is the best technique if your lawn is on a slope. Therefore, you can dig a ditch and allow for the water to gather somewhere that is away from where you are in the yard. You can add decorative stones so that the ditch looks nice or add bark chippings. In particular, bark chippings are good at absorbing moisture and it can help to provide drainage away from your lawn or existing plants.

Enjoy More Plants

When you have a waterlogged lawn, one way you can help the soil is by having more plants. Thus, choose to dig up part of your grass and choose some new plants to take its place. Not only will this look good, but it is going to help prevent your lawn from being too wet. For example, cornus alba and hydrangea macrophylla are good shrubs for wet soils. They are going to help take away some of the water from the lawn. In addition, actaea and hosta are recommended perennials too. This can be an affordable way to solve your lawn problems and grow beautiful plants at the same time. Just ensure that you do your research and find plants that can survive in wet conditions. Indeed, there are some plants that do not like a lot of water or living in the shade.

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Add Grit Sand to Your Soil

Do you have clay soil? Do you think this is the reason why you are experiencing drainage problems? Instead of digging up your whole yard and replacing the soil, you can add grit sand to it. This is going to help with the drainage and ensure that water can run through the soil. This might take a lot of work if you have grass. But it can be worth it if it provides a long-term solution to your drainage problems.

How to Lay New Turf

If your drainage issues were really bad, you may have to lay new turf down after you have fixed the problem. This is something that you can do by yourself. All you need is a few tools and materials to get started.

Prepare the Area

First of all, start by removing any old turf and preparing the area for a new lawn. This is going to include leveling out the ground, as well as removing any debris or stones. You can also throw on some topsoil in order to make the ground better for your grass and to level it out. You can do this with a rake. You then want to compress the ground and ensure that it is firm for laying the turf.

Lay the Turf

Now it is time to lay your rolls of turf. This is the fun part! Take your rolls and lay them out flat onto the soil. It is best to overlap the edges slightly so that you can get an even lawn. You can easily cut off any turf that you do not need. This can be done simply with a spade. Make sure that all of your turf is flat and making contact with the soil. This is going to ensure that it grows properly.

Water Your New Lawn

It is going to be important to keep watering your new turf on a regular basis. You should do this every day for several weeks. This is going to allow the turf to grow and establish itself. In particular, if there is hot weather, ensure the lawn is always moist so that it does not dry out and die.

Wait Until It is 3cm in Height

Once you have laid your turf and waited a few weeks, you are going to be eager to mow the lawn for the first time. The best time to do this is when the grass is at least 3cm high. This is going to ensure that it has had enough time to establish itself. Then you can mow the lawn and enjoy having fresh green grass with better drainage.

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