Low-lying areas of the lawn can be a landscaping nightmare, since they will be prone to sogginess and mud. The overly wet soil also increases the chances of root rot, making it more difficult to find plants that will thrive in the area. The following tips can help you improve the site and landscape it successfully.
Tip #1: Install drainage
If standing water after irrigation or rain is the problem, the installation of some simple drainage may be sufficient to fix the problem. Dig up the top foot or two of soil and install a perforated drain pipe. Route the pipe so one end is higher than the other, with the low end at an area where the drainage is desired – such as near a sewer inlet. Then, cover the pipe with a layer of pea gravel and replace the soil. Excess water should percolate through the soil and gravel, into the pipe, and then away from the formerly soggy area.
Tip #2: Build up the bed
For the flower lovers, a raised garden bed may solve the problem. Begin by building up a wall around the wet area. You should probably aim for at least a foot high so the roots won't be forced to grow into the soggy soil below. Then, fill the area in with a well-draining soil mixture. A mixture that contains compost, topsoil, and perlite or vermiculite works well. Perlite and vermiculite are available from garden centers. They are lightweight volcanic minerals that aid soil drainage. Now you can plant in the better draining soil and have the flowers you enjoy.
Tip #3: Build a dry-ish creek or pond
A dry creek consists of a bed of decorative rocks that meanders through the landscape. You can also do dry ponds by creating a rock-lined basin. Begin by digging out your creek or pond shape, and then line the area with landscaping fabric to keep the weeds out. Then, spread the base rocks over the entire thing, making sure to cover the edges of the fabric with rocks. You can then add larger decorative boulders to complete the design. Since this is a wet area, it will only be a sometimes-dry creek or pond, since moisture may occasionally accumulate after rain.
Talk to a landscaping professional like one from L & L Excavation & Landscaping for more help with designing around a wet area. They can help you with everything from design ideas to plant selections.