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Foundation Planting

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by NNJLandman, Jul 23, 2006.

  1. NNJLandman

    NNJLandman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,306

    One of my lawn customers has hired me to try to fix a water issue they have around their house. Apparently they are getting flooding in the basement and I have suggested that we add some topsoil to the area to raise the earth up and slope it away from the house. I would also like to install several small shrubs that would absorb the water. I was thinking about using like junipers...I figured they would absorb water fairly well. Anyone have any suggestions?

  2. DLS1

    DLS1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,619

    Sump pump in the basement. Drain lines in the yard to drain water away from the house. Got any pictures of the problem area.
  3. AGLA

    AGLA LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,776

    Surface water finding its way into a basement is usually from roof runoff. If they have gutters and downspouts, you can add piping to either a drywell or to daylight. You have to remember that around newer houses the foundation backfill is more pourous than what is beneath it, so water going into the ground within about 10' of the foundation tends to go down and follow the slope of the excavation back to the foundation footing - the path of least resistance. You need to get the water past that backfill.

    Plants are not going to cure the problem by using up the water.
  4. bdoss123

    bdoss123 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 131

    Whats a "dry well" - ?

  5. AGLA

    AGLA LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,776

    A drywell is a hole in the ground with some kind of structure in it with holes that leak water out. They are surrounded by large stone. Sometimes they are made of concrete from a precast company, sometimes they are a pipe set on end with big drill holes in them, and they are often available at home centers as a kit (aquaflo, I think.) you pipe the downspout runoff into them and the water fills the structure and leaks out into the stone and eventually is absorbed into the soil. These don't work well in heavy silt or clay soils.

    This might help:
  6. wurkn with amish

    wurkn with amish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 662

    what year is the house? It seems like after a certain yr the builders started putting in footer drains. You might have to do this. Also the well method seemsto work.
  7. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,794

    Thats definitly the expensive way to do a drywell.

    Out here we dig down 3-4 feet, line with landscape fabric, run out drain pipe into the hole, wrap the end with fabric and backfill with drainrock.
  8. bdoss123

    bdoss123 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 131

    That's an interesting idea. I have always pondered something like that but using the collected runoff for watering puposes instead of letting it back into the soil. Never tried it though.

  9. NNJLandman

    NNJLandman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,306

    This yard has problems, when it rains the yard always floods, and there are sink holes everywhere. Ill be mowing and the tire will fall in these little holes and in some areas the earth has sunk a lot more drastically. WHen I said the yard floods when it rains, I ment it will be about 3-4inches of water after a little shower. And of course the fertilize the lawn and boy you should see it grow. Ill see what I can do to help correct the problem if there is anything I can do at all.

  10. GardnerLandscaping

    GardnerLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 310

    adding soil and plants like juniper would help soak up surface water and fill in surface pockets if you run something over it to compact it. It is amazing how dry the ground is around the dwarf magnolias, birch trees, iris, and juniper in the landscape beds around my home and the 50 foot high hill.

    french drain system or drywell as described would also help move and disperse the water under the surface. my home has a french drain around an egg rock path. lawn is very healthy instead of washed out there now.

    adding underground drainage pipes from gutters would be top priority to move water away from the foundation backfill. new construction code even requires it around here.

    outsourcing to an expert or calling a local authority to send out an expert would be wise. digging up and overhauling the yard may be needed. just hope you don't find a lot construction waste or a cemetary under there causing the problem.

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