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Dealing With Spring Drainage

Standing water can be very detrimental to turf health by creating an environment conducive for plant diseases.

Standing water can be very detrimental to turf health by creating an environment conducive for plant diseases.
Drew Jeffers, ©2020. Clemson University Cooperative Extension

Winter is the perfect time to install a drainage solution to remove standing water in the yard by adding surface drains, French drains, or both. Removing excess standing water helps with disease prevention in turf. Many turf diseases are made worse by prolonged wet conditions.

Most surface drains, also called catch basins, are designed to remove pooling surface water in low areas. Catch basins come in a variety of shapes and sizes to tailor a system for any yard situation.

Before installing a drainage system, call 811 to have the utility lines marked. Once marked, the location and direction of the basin and pipe should be taken into consideration. When digging, be sure to maintain a 1% slope along the trench. If you are not installing a French drain, gravel will not be needed at the bottom of the trench. Many installers are now using pre-fabricated French drains that come surrounded by Styrofoam material, making installation much easier. For those who are unable to dig or feel they lack the skill, professional drainage contractors are available.

For more information, see HGIC 1725, Landscape Renovation, and Drying Up Root and Crown Rot Pathogens.

If this document didn’t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at hgic@clemson.edu or 1-888-656-9988.

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