How do I get rid of standing water in my Olney MD yard? It’s a question we get fairly often, and unfortunately, there are no easy answers because every yard and every situation is different. It’s an excellent question though, and we’ll explore some of the possibilities in this article.
Identifying Root Causes
The first step in answering the question ‘how do I get rid of standing water in my Olney MD yard?’ is to try and identify what’s causing the water to pool. Broadly speaking there are two possibilities here. One is based on your habits, which is to say, specific things you may be doing or not doing that are contributing to the problem.
The second, we’ll call a design-based problem, and it stems from the physical aspects and characteristics of your property. Of the two, the first issue is substantially easier to deal with. The question then, is how do you know which type of issue you’ve got?
Initially, answering the question ‘how do I get rid of standing water in my Olney MD yard?’ comes down to doing a bit of experimentation. If the issue is habit based, then there are two major things to check and try.
First, visually inspect the flora and fauna on your property to see if the water is pooling around your plants. Here’s a common example of what you might find:
If you created a plant bed that borders your house, you may have used decorative stones to partition the area off. Unfortunately, your efforts to create an aesthetically pleasing border might also be creating a basin from which water has difficulty escaping.
If the downspouts connected to the gutters around your home are emptying into this, you’re creating your own problem. The water doesn’t have anywhere to go and can’t drain from the bed you’ve created quickly, so it’s likely to start seeping into your foundation, where it will ultimately cause serious damage. Not good.
Fortunately, that’s an easy problem to fix. Either create a few drainage channels so the water has an easy way out of the bed or extend your downspouts and angle them such that they’re not emptying into the bed.
Second, experiment by watering your existing plants less. It could be that you’re simply overwatering, which is creating the issue. Cut that back, and the problem should go away on its own.
But what if you’ve investigated both of those possibilities and the problem isn’t getting any better?
Some people try to answer the question ‘how do I get rid of standing water in my Olney MD yard?’ by planting additional flora and fauna in the area where the standing water exists. At first glance, this approach seems to make sense. After all, the roots of those newly installed plants should soak up the excess water, neatly solving the problem, right?
Unfortunately, that’s usually a bad idea unless you’re very careful about what you choose to plant. Most plants will die due to the presence of the excess water long before they have a chance to do what you’re hoping they’ll do, so what does that leave?
At that point, there are a number of other possibilities to consider. These are design-based issues, and include things like:
- The presence of thatch – This term refers to organic debris that exists in a layer between the vegetation you can see on the surface of your lawn and the soil beneath it. In order for water to drain, it’s got to be able to get to the soil. If there’s a thick, dense layer of thatch covering your lawn, it may be preventing the water from doing that.
This is also a relatively easy problem to fix. Simply get rid of the thatch layer and aerate the soil, and the problem should go away.
- The presence of hardpan – Soil comes in two basic flavors: Topsoil and Sub-soil. Almost everyone is familiar with topsoil. Sub-soil is the layer beneath it. Sometimes, this layer of sub-soil can become so dense and tightly packed that it’s practically impossible for water to drain through it. Hardpan can occur naturally or be created by the presence of heavy construction vehicles.
Hardpan can be broken up, but it takes serious effort and some specialized equipment. If you’re a committed do it yourselfer, that may be something you can tackle on your own, but if you’d rather not, we can help with that. It’s one of the many services we provide.
- Your soil doesn’t drain very well, or your property is poorly graded – Soil composition can vary widely from one property to the next, and if your soil is mostly heavy clay, any water that winds up on it is going to just sit there, for the most part.
It could also be the case that your property just isn’t graded optimally. There are low lying areas where the water just tends to naturally collect. The solution to this issue and the issue of dense soil with poor drainage qualities is the installation of some type of drainage system on your property.
There are lots of possibilities here, but the most commonly deployed solution is the installation of a French drain. This is a bit more of a process and is something generally beyond the capabilities of all but the most experienced do it yourselfers.
The good news is that you don’t have to go it alone. Whatever’s causing your drainage issues, we’ve got you covered. If you don’t have the time to investigate the matter yourself, just give our office a call. We’ll get to the bottom of the issue for you and devise a comprehensive solution.
How do I get rid of standing water in my Olney MD yard? Give us a call. We’ll be there when you need us.