Grading & Drainage

Improper grading and drainage in a landscape causes water to pool or water to slope towards buildings. Both these issues are extremely detrimental. Standing water jeopardizes the health of the landscape as the lawn gets submerged because there is excessive water stress on the roots of all plants. This will slowly kill them. Water puddles are also a breeding ground for mosquitoes and insects, which can cause health problems for people and put the landscape at risk of pest infestation.

The water should never slope towards any buildings as this can damage the foundation and flood. Water should also be directed away from hardscapes such as retaining walls, patios and pavers because if water seeps into them, it can potentially deteriorate them, and there would have to be an investment in repair work or to replace them.

The professionals at Down To Earth Landscape & Irrigation grade landscapes correctly so that all water, including stormwater runoffs and rainwater from gutters, is directed away from buildings and hardscapes. We install proper drainage systems to collect water in pipes because excessive surface runoff will cause soil erosion in landscapes and degrade the quality of the land.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) directs that hardscapes like patios, walkways, and driveways need a minimum grading of ¼ inch per foot away from any buildings to prevent settling of water. The final grading must be ½ inch per foot over a minimum distance of 10 feet. This grading must be done to make sure the water drains away from the foundation of any buildings.

Landscape grading is a science, and it involves various aspects like soil, topography, construction, and horticulture. A professional landscaper analyzes the landscape by assessing the unevenness / evenness, the natural drainage pathways (if any), the slope, and recognizes areas with poor drainage.

Once this analysis has been done, the landscaper then discusses the issues found with the property owner/manager and then formulate a plan while keeping their needs in mind. The landscaper will remove the topsoil so that the land below can be graded correctly. Grass and plants will be planted and given a certain time to develop roots. After the vegetation has developed a root system, the topsoil will be added back, and the entire landscape will be leveled.

While some people would like to grade their landscape as a DIY project, leaving it to a professional landscaper is highly recommended. We recommend this to avoid any potential damage to the property such as damaging utility lines like water and gas while attempting to dig on your own.

Landscape grading requires a combined knowledge of topography, construction, gardening – someone who is trained and has the required skills will be best equipped to execute it. Grading requires digging up land, which requires local permits.

It is best to contact a certified landscaping company that already has the permits required for this service. A professional will also be able to assess the requirements of the land and install the correct drainage system to meet those needs.

Other Irrigation Services

Irrigation Design & Installation

Well & Pump Solutions