6 Ways to Help a Soggy Lawn

There is nothing good about a soggy yard.

If water tends to build-up on your lawn after a long rain or after watering, it can create all sorts of problems.

Not only does it turn your lawn into a muddy mess that is hard to walk across, but it could also lead to problems such as damaging your flowerbeds, increasing your chances of mosquitos and other insects, and causing structural damage to your home.

If that soggy lawn causes water to pool up against your house, it could leak into your foundation and basement. A sump pump, such as the ones mentioned in this article, can help keep your basement from flooding — but you still don’t want that water lingering against your house.

So, what should you do about a soggy lawn?

Install a drain

If you have low spots in your yard that can’t drain naturally after a heavy rain, you may need to install some sort of drainage system in your yard to take care of the excess water.

Many homeowners opt for a French drain, which is a gravel-filled trench that helps direct water away from your yard. It is fairly easy to install your own French drain system. After it is installed, you can incorporate the trenches into your landscape or cover them up with landscape fabric and plant grass on top of them.

Aeration to loosen soil

Part of the reason the top of your lawn might be soggy is that your soil is too compacted. Compacted soil won’t absorb water properly, so when it rains, water isn’t able to soak into the ground.

Aerating your soil can help fix this problem. There are a few different ways to go about this. One way is to simply poke holes in your yard using a sharp spike or a fork. A more time-efficient way is to rent an aeration machine that will remove small plugs of soil from your yard.

Check your downspouts

It might not be a problem with your lawn at all, but with your downspouts. If your downspouts are clogged or aren’t sending water far enough away from your yard, all of the water could be collecting in the same spot on your lawn. If the ground can’t absorb it fast enough, it results in a soggy appearance.

To fix this, check your downspouts to make sure they aren’t clogged. If you realize that they aren’t clogged, you may need to extend them so that the water is going to a different spot in your lawn.

Less watering to prevent puddles

Another common reason for a soggy yard is that you’re overwatering your grass. If the soil is too saturated, it won’t be able to absorb more water, resulting in puddles forming on your grass.

To prevent this from happening, avoid watering your grass right after rain. If you can tell the soil is saturated, turn off your sprinklers or put your hose away until the soil has a chance to dry up. Once your soil has a chance to dry and the puddles are gone, you can resume watering your lawn.

Fix the slope

If your lawn is flat around the foundation of your home or if your lawn slopes towards your home, you need to fix your incline of your yard. Fixing the slope of your yard takes time and money, but it is worth it if it will help keep water from collecting against your house.

When you fix the slope of your lawn, it helps to direct water away from your house. To fix the slope of your lawn, you need to raise the soil around your house, and then create a gradual slope leading away from your foundation.

Create a rain garden

If you have a low area in your yard that is constantly soggy because of runoff, try creating a rain garden. A rain garden is full of plants that can absorb the water. Not only does it look nice, but it also provides food and shelter for animals.

Ferns, shrubs, and perennials with deep rooting systems are all good choices for a rain garden. The best plants will vary depending upon your location—talk to a specialist at your local gardening store to get recommendations.

Final thoughts

If you notice that you have a soggy yard, don’t wait for the problem to resolve itself. Once water starts puddling on your grass, it is only going to get worse. Use the tips above to start improving your lawn or talk to a professional landscaper.