Damage caused by water runoff can quickly turn a beautiful garden into a muddy marsh. Water carries soil, wood chips, grass clippings, and other debris that can cause erosion and pollute public water. If you’re looking to preserve the structural integrity of your landscape and avoid erosion, try one of these ideas for better water runoff control.
A berm is a small hill covered with rocks, grass, and other plants that divert water around an area you’d like to protect. Water flows toward the berm from one direction, and on the opposite side is the area you’re protecting. A berm is a good option for a relatively quick fix to water runoff control. Make sure to follow a detailed guide when building a berm.
A swale is a shallow depression that follows the natural contour of a slope, diverting water from one place to another. Rocks in the swale help slow the speed of water, allowing it to sink into the soil. Swales are also used to direct water toward a dry well or around the base of a house (to avoid basement flooding). You can enhance a swale by using a landscaping blanket, compost filter sock, or other product to increase effectiveness.
Sediment Control Products
A number of products on the market assist with water runoff control. The list can be somewhat overwhelming, including types of liners, cloth, filter systems, blankets, mesh baskets, barriers, turf, mulch, mats, and much more. But not all products are created equal, and it’s important to do your research to find the best fit for your garden or landscape issue.
If your problem is minimal water runoff and significant sediment buildup, you could try a compost filter sock. This is a great option if you have some water runoff but want to control erosion without disturbing the ground in an area with established vegetation.
Hardscape encompasses the man-made features of landscape architecture, such as paths or driveways. If one of your problems has been water moving over or around hardscape, you might consider installing paving materials that have small gaps to allow water to seep through them. This will keep the surface dry while eliminating runoff. Small-scale jobs, such as permeable walkways, can be DIY projects, but you might need to hire professionals to tackle a driveway or other large project.
Grade Broad Surfaces
Landscape grading is the basis of landscape design and can help significantly with water runoff control. This is a more expensive option, which will require an excavator or rental equipment. However, if you need extreme water runoff control — perhaps your basement is continually flooded — then it’s an essential step.
With so many products on the market to address water runoff control, the options are practically endless. Luckily, this means you’ll be able to stop excess water runoff and get the most out of your