I'm new to the forum and by no means a gardener, but I could use some
A few years back we re modelled the garden by putting in some decking,
added around a ton of topsoil to level it off and a nice new fence.
What I didn't do at the time was put in some kind of drainage for the
soil and because of that our lawns have always died at the lower side of
the garden. I thought I had cured it. Maybe you could let me know if
this is adequate but I dug a trench to below the fence, filled it with
large round stones. Then put a membrane over that and put bark on top
with a wooden border between it and the lawn. Unfortunately our lawn is
dying and is pretty water logged at one side. Apologies for the long
story but is this still happening due to the soil. If it is, could you
also let me know how much of it to remove ie. do I have to take it all
away at the bad areas or do I just need a certain depth with new soil.
In almost all cases the solution to water problems are
A - To divert it away from where it's causing the problem
in some fashion, before it ever gets there. An example of
that is regrading to direct it away.
B - To take it away from the problem area. An example
of that is a drain system that takes the water to a lower
area via gravity or some kind of sump pump system
where gravity is not an option.
Just digging a trench and filling it with rock doesn't sound
adequate. Of course it depends on the size of the trench,
but all it's going to do is take some of the water. If the
ground area is already wet and unable to absorb water,
once the trench is full that's about all the good it's going to
Hi and thanks for the reply,
Perhaps trench is not the best word for describing what I did. It's now
a sloping run-off on the low side of the lawn that now goes under the
fence and away. The large round stones were so the water had an easy
route out through all the gaps.
Now I'm thinking that the soil has absorbed so much water over the last
5 yrs or so, that it's just "gone bad" and just can't sustain a lawn
In your original post you said that lawn area is still wet,
so whatever you did didn't eliminate the problem, right? Did
it help though? I would have laid 4" perforated pipe in
that stone trench, pitched to run downhill and away.
Provided you have the grade to do that, it would have
been the most effective way to get the water out of there. Water can
move through a
pipe a lot better than it will through a long stone bed
with no pipe.
It also depends on where the water is coming from. If
it gets there via runoff from rain, then the pipe system
can greatly increase how fast it gets out of there and
how fast it returns to normal. If it's an area where the
ground water level is high, then a pipe system can
help, but I would think it's not going to be as effective.
To really get it down in moisture, you might need a
complete drain field underneath the whole area. And
I don't think I've seen a wet area from groundwater
where you had the pitch to use gravity. Meaning then
you'd need a pump system that adds to cost and
Another possibility is to convert that area to something
other than turf.
I don't know how soil can go bad from water. I'd bet
water is still your main problem. There are also some
species of grass that are better suited to wet locations,
but the ones I'm familiar with are suited to shade, not
' email@example.com[_2_ Wrote:
> ;940291']On Oct 25, 1:13*pm, Steve Anderson
Thanks for the reply,
During the time I was building the run off trench the soil got a good
turnover and was left bare for at least 3 weeks while I was away
working. By the time I got round to laying the lawn it seemed fine. Then
the lawn lasted maybe a month or so then started to show signs of dying
in patches yet again. We live in Aberdeen and that was a particularly
heavy month of rain even for here.
It's interesting you mention grass types that are more suited to wetter
ground and shade as the area of lawn that always goes bad on me doesn't
get the sun. As you say perhaps another kind of ground cover may be the
answer but we like have a little grass and certainly don't want to have
a concrete jungle! I also thought about astro turf but it's an expensive
alternative that would still need proper drainage.
The garden gets plenty of sunlight but the fence shades the area that
keeps going bad, also there is nothing else growing to steal the soils
nutrients. Again thanks for all the replies folks, I'll have a look into
seeing if my soil is acidic and have another go at putting it right in
the springtime. Wish me luck :)
A fence is never going to produce enough shade by itself
to keep any of the turf grasses from growing. So, suggest
you look elsewhere for the problem. For shade
to be a factor it has to be far more extensive. A classic
example of an area where shade is a problem would be on
the north side of a house that also has dense trees close by
further shading it.
Yes, testing the soil is a good idea. If no local ag agency, etc
is available, you can buy test kits either at a garden center or
online. They should be OK for testing the PH.
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