Saturday, May 3, 2014

The Test is Yet to Come

And the test begins! With climate change and more severe storms over the past few years, SC has experienced a drainage problem in the back and side yards. The water drains off or evaporates after it stops raining, but when you go days with too much rain, it begins to take its toll on the yard and my sanity.

The Before Pictures

During one of the downpours (4" in 2 hours) I waded out and took some pictures... 

Before pictures when it was dry - side yard from the back (no grass and no drainage)
Side yard from the front...
We had six wax myrtles along the side fence giving wonderful privacy and lots of shade. They were removed and stumps ground to make way for new sod and plants. Here's Kyle with his remote-controlled grinder. It was really cool to watch and took him about 20 minutes to grind six stumps!
The black landscape fabric was laid down to keep the dirt (mud) from washing away when it rained. (The wind bunched it up in the following pictures.)
The backyard looked like a wasteland! Now, I should mention, that part of my problem was due to my love of trees, which creates shade. And guess what? Shade kills grass, well, at least the beautiful Bermuda grass we'd originally planted. I wish someone had told us 15 years ago that Bermuda doesn't like shade.

More fabric following the wash downstream...
Back yard, lots of shade and no grass:(
The green is moss - at least something was growing!
Note the black drain corrugated pipe. It was extended from the gutter to keep water from flowing to the side yard.
The crepe myrtle tree my dad brought over years ago...
So, we did what all good homeowners do and brought in several "experts" on drainage. After speaking to more than four different companies we decided to go with removing some of the shade barriers (wax myrtles), regrading the property and laying down new shade-tolerant sod. 

The After Pictures

Backyard behind the gate. Three zhou zhou lorapetalum and a crepe myrtle (impossible to see in this picture) replaced the wax myrtles.

A dry stream bed was installed so that the water draining from our neighbor's yard is dissipated and flows downward through the back of our property.

Looking downstream so to speak - the water is supposed to follow the rock...
Stream bed from the opposite end...
The dogwood tree (afternoon)
(and early morning). The grass is Emerald Zoysia and is supposted to be shade tolerant. 
Lots of pine needles
More pictures...

The water now drains from the gutter underground to the dry stream bed.
Exiting here...
We had some minor rain a week ago and everything worked well, but only a huge downpour will tell the test. We'll keep you posted:)


Kim Poovey said...

It's gorgeous!!! I can't believe how different it looks! Lizzy is very excited about breaking it all in:)!



Kim Poovey said...


It's me Lizzy. Love the yard! I can't wait to roll around and romp on the grass and chase squirrels, or that blasted rabbit that continues to elude me. However, it is entirely too pretty to pooh on so mom will have to walk me more and you know how much I hate that!

Barks and growls,