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Importance of Yard Drainage

yard drainage
Depending on where you live, yard drainage may or may not be an issue. In Florida, drainage problems can mean major trouble – in this June alone, Pensacola had 11.78 inches of rain. If you have any custom landscaping, this can be bad news for your trees, shrubs and lawn features. Plus, Florida is known for its mosquitoes and other unwelcome insects, and water stagnating in your landscaping can attract more of them.

While flooding on your lawn is unsightly and inconvenient at best and damaging at worst, it is important to manage it. The good news is that, with a basic understanding of how flooding affects different grasses and shrubs, you will be well equipped to decide whether you need to consult with a professional landscaping team to manage your yard drainage, your lawn plants, or both.

How Well Do Trees and Shrubs Tolerate Flooding?

If flooding is transient, most of the hardier trees and shrubs will remain unharmed. However, residential landscaping and commercial landscaping alike may involve delicate shrubbery or turfgrass that can be washed away. Washing away becomes more likely if turfgrass or other plants with shallower roots are located on a hill or slope.

As most landscape designers can tell you, while many shrubs and trees are unharmed after flooding due to rain, your landscape as a whole may not be at its best. Flooding floats debris, and when it has drained from the landscape, it leaves behind that dirt and debris.

Will My Lawn Be Okay After a Flood?

How well a lawn does after a flood depends largely on the type of grass you have chosen to landscape with. Certain types of grasses have a higher tolerance for submersion. These grasses will stay rooted through a flood, and the excess water will not usually kill them.

The following grasses have a relatively high tolerance to submersion:

  • Creeping bentgrass
  • Tall fescue
  • Seashore paspalum
  • Bermuda grass

If your lawn currently is a landscape using primarily turfgrass or another grass with a poor tolerance for submersion, it may be a good idea to consider reseeding with a grass that has a higher tolerance for submersion.

What Do I Do After the Rain Stops?

If you are concerned about the state of your yard drainage, the next deluge offers an opportunity to evaluate how it is working and to make changes if necessary. Once the rain has stopped, watch your current yard drainage system. Does the flooding clear quickly? Does it stay? Where does the water pool in your yard?

It also is helpful to monitor the health of your grass. If your lawn appears to remain rooted and healthy even after extensive flooding, you likely have a grass that is highly tolerant to flooding. If the grass is easily uprooted or yellows after submersion, you may need to talk to a professional about a type better suited to periodic submersion due to flooding. Make a note of the answers to these questions, as they will be helpful if you choose to talk to a landscaping professional.

In short, having an effective system of yard drainage can protect the health of your grasses, shrubs, and other landscape features, and they can also reduce the presence of insects on your lawn. And because you can see when a drainage system is ineffective but may not know the best way to fix it, speaking with the professionals at Executive Landscaping can help you to quickly solve your lawn issues. Whether you are looking at improving lawn drainage, choosing plants and shrubs that can survive submersion or some combination of the two, we can help solve your lawn issues. Give us a call today!