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  1. final 1aWhen it comes to designing a new landscape or renovating your yard, it can be hard to imagine just how the changes will look. If you’re working with digital software, you can easily create just the right yard that suits your vision, without the cost of hiring a professional designer who doesn’t have your unique vision. 3D U-vision Design will give you the tools you need to create 3D designs for your landscaping project, all without the hassle of making expensive changes to an existing backyard. From water features to playgrounds, you have plenty of components to choose from with 3D U-Vision Design.

    Save Money With 3D Plans

    3D backyard plans have all the realism of an actual landscape, so you don’t have to make many guesses. What you see is what you get, so you can play around with the software until you have something to take to your landscapers. 3D U-Vision provides an easy way to make creative changes in the design process without spending a ton of money. What’s best is that, with all the 3D models, objects, and walls, you can wind up with a yard unlike any other. Use your own ideas to create something worthwhile and creative.

    With 3D U-Vision, You Can…

    Plan out your ideal yard with ease
    Change your mind without paying tons of money
    Generate ideas
    Create unique swimming pools
    Envision your yard at different times of day
    How Easy Is It?

    3d-designDon’t worry if technology isn’t your strong suit. 3D U-Vision software is incredibly easy to use in the hands of new users with a little effort. When it comes designing a garden or backyard with your imagination, you can use the software’s prebuilt tools to create new swimming pool layouts and even import elements from Google Sketchup. Let your imagination run wild with decorative fencing, outdoor furniture and plants.

    The Best U-Vision Features

    Realistic textures
    A wide variety of objects
    An easy-to-use pool creation tool
    2D blueprints available for export
    3D presentation capabilities
    Design the Perfect Backyard

    3D U-Vision has plenty of features that will help you plan exactly the kind of backyard you want. With customization and a wide variety of objects to choose from, you’ll find it easier than ever to imagine your backyard the way you want it. From water features to pools, this software has everything you need. Its pool building wizard offers a selection of prebuilt pools as well as the means to create your own swimming pool. Once you’ve finished designing exactly the kind of backyard you’d like, you can easily export a 2D layout for construction to bring your dreams to reality.

    From technical drawings to design and composition, it often seems like there’s no easy way to create the dream backyard. However, 3D U-Vision Design can help you turn your vision into reality. Using digital objects with realistic textures, you can assemble everything just how you like it. What this software ultimately offers is ability to customize and dream up the perfect yard, all with a 2D blueprint for straightforward construction.

  2. a bull dog rolling in the grassThe winter months typically mean that homeowners in Ann Arbor Michigan can take a much-needed break from mowing their lawns. After all, during the warmer months of the year, you may find yourself mowing and edging your yard on a weekly basis. During the colder months of the year, most grass types fall into a state of dormancy, and they will have minimal or no growth. More than that, in the local area, they often will be covered with inches or even feet of snow at times. This means that mowing may be both unnecessary and even impossible at times.

    When to Avoid Mowing
    During the dead of winter when snow and ice are on the ground, you should definitely avoid mowing. You should also avoid mowing when your ground is wet from rain, regardless of the temperature. Mowing wet grass can damage your mower, and it also can damage your grass blades. If you choose to mow during the colder weather season, choose a time when there is no moisture on the ground. It can be difficult to find a time when the grass is completely dry and the temperature is above freezing in the winter months in Ann Arbor Michigan, and because of this, most choose not to mow.

    If You Do Mow
    Some homeowners love to keep a tidy yard, and there often is some grass growth in the winter. This most often occurs during the transitional months at the beginning and end of winter when some days may still be warmer and sunny and may encourage vegetation growth. If you decide to mow in the winter months, consider using professional winter services from a landscaper. The landscaper has the knowledge and expertise to time the mowing service at the most ideal time for optimal health of your yard.

    Other Cold Weather Services to Consider
    Mowing is just one of many steps that you can and should take to care for your yard. During the cooler months of the year in Ann Arbor Michigan, there are other winter services available that can promote the health of your grass, shrubs and other features. For example, applying a coat of winter fertilizer and weed control is a great step to take to prepare for the pending spring season. Some landscaping companies may rake leaves in the fall to prevent unnecessary debris from affecting grass growth. Some also offer snow removal services, which can protect your yard and promote personal safety for you and your loved ones.

    It is easy to overlook the care of your yard during the winter months when freezing temperatures are common, but there are some steps that you can and should take to promote the health of your lawn and other vegetation. Mowing is not always necessary during these months, but it often can be done under the right conditions. Whether you are interested in mowing services or other winter services, your best option is to contact your landscaper for assistance with yard care during the colder months of the year.

  3. Snow RemovalIn Michigan, clearing winter and spring snow from your property is a way of life. For years, you’ve gone the DIY route. You shoveled your own driveway, or used your snow blower. Even in those high drifts, you sucked it up and cleared it yourself. Now, maybe you’ve slowed down and you want to ditch the DIY strategy, or you’d just rather not spend the weekend thawing frozen fingers and rigid toes. Besides, you can find better ways to spend your winter weekend afternoons. Contacting a snow plowing company can make a tremendous amount of difference.
    MAKING THE BIG DECISIONSo the battle lines are drawn: Should you hire a landscaping company or stick with your traditional DIY method? The obvious advantage to doing it yourself is the cost. You might want to consider this if you have just a couple of inches of snow. In most cases, that’s a DIY job. Just about any snow blower can easily handle that, maybe you can even shovel it yourself. However, a new one could cost you anywhere from $500-$6,000. And with an average snowfall of 57 inches, one bad Ann Arbor blizzard could pin you in for a while. So you’ve decided to hire a landscaping company to keep your home, yard and driveway clear of the snow.

    FINDING THE RIGHT LANDSCAPING COMPANY

    But first, you’ll need to do some homework. You have several from which to choose, and the choices can be overwhelming. So where do you start? The first step is to check you’re your neighbors who are satisfied with the company they have hired, preferably for a few winters. You should query them. What is the company’s response time? How long does the job typically take? Do they quickly and efficiently correct complaints? How much snow triggers service? What kind of weekly or monthly deals do they offer? Do they have 24/7 service in winter? What do they charge for standard and extra services?

    ONLINE INVESTIGATION

    Also check reputable online sites for referrals and recommendations. Of course you will want to query about cost. But always remember, the cheapest is not always the least expensive. Check the following: How long have they been in business? Do you see testimonials from satisfied clients? Do they offer all the services you will need?

    START LOOKING EARLY

    If possible, begin your search before the need arises. Disreputable pop-up landscaping companies get rich and then take-off with lots of money from desperate homeowners who need emergency service. The unhappy homeowners are often left frustrated and angry with a poor job or property damage; either way, the bogus landscaping company is gone, and it and its employees are never heard from again. On the positive side, you can often get a better deal if you work with them before that first big snowfall. That way, you are less likely to find yourself at the end of a long line of existing and satisfied clients.

  4. Small Excavator Bobcat Working On The StreetProfessional snow plowing services can be immensely helpful to businesses and residences that are located in colder climates. The presence of heavy snow buildup can be a problem for so many reasons. It can make transportation a big hassle. It can be a significant deterrent to guests, customers and clients alike as well. Most people have extremely busy schedules. They don’t exactly have the time and energy necessary to devote to hours and hours of time-consuming and physically taxing snow plowing needs. That’s why it can be so priceless to seek assistance from a highly regarded company that offers comprehensive snow plowing service. If you’re patient, focused and detail-oriented, it shouldn’t be hard for you to select a snow plowing company that’s 100 percent appropriate for your requirements and preferences.

    Request Numerous Estimates

    It’s important to go with a snow plowing business that has reasonable rates. Choosing a business that’s too expensive can be a headache. It can prevent you from keeping up with your snow plowing needs at later times as well. If you want to work with a snow plowing company that’s perfect for your budget, you should request numerous estimates. Don’t simply go with the cheapest company you find, either. That can spell trouble. Find out what your quotes include. They may include additional services such as sidewalk shoveling and sidewalk salting. You should always make a point to go with a snow plowing company that can give you the best value for your money. It’s as simple as that. Don’t forget that the most expensive company isn’t necessarily the most reliable one. Remember that the cheapest company probably may have some drawbacks, too.

    Concentrate on Company Dependability

    Recommendations can be excellent for peace of mind. If you want to choose a strong and dependable snow plowing business, seek suggestions from trustworthy individuals you know well. It doesn’t matter if you talk to a family member, a neighbor who lives down the street, your boss or even your dentist. A recommendation can be helpful. Once you get in contact with a snow plowing business that seems like a good fit for you, your research shouldn’t stop. Request references from the company. Reach out to the references to ensure that you’re making a good choice. If you feel uncomfortable with the references for any reason, step away. There are always plenty of other snow plowing companies out there for you.

    Request a Written Agreement

    Written agreements are essential for people who want to make good snow plowing company choices. Make sure you receive an estimate that clearly indicates all of the company’s specific terms and conditions. This can be important for your comfort and ease. If you’re currently on the lookout for a capable and honest snow plowing company anywhere in the Ann Arbor, Michigan area, we’re available to come to your rescue. Call our landscaping business as soon as you can to learn more about our snow plowing expertise and to make an appointment.

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  5. Blue Spruce Tree Blight

    The blue spruce, also called the Colorado blue spruce, was first discovered in 1862 in the Rocky Mountains. Known for silver-blue needles that keep their color year round, this classic tree is a favorite of landscapers, wildlife, and is often found in attendance during the holidays as a Christmas tree. Known for its silvery evergreen foliage, there should be no reason for this tree’s needles to turn brown or drop off of the branches.

    Signs of a healthy Colorado blue spruce

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    A healthy blue spruce can live for a very long time. Mature trees can reach up to 75 feet tall and up to 20 feet wide. Spruce are suited to grow in Hardiness Zones 2-7, preferring sunny locations with moderate moisture. Signs of a healthy spruce include:

    • Silver-blue needles year round
    • Stiff and prickly needles up to 1 1/2″ in length
    • Growing of 12″-24″ per year
    • Light brown pine cones around 3″ in length
    • Even, pyramid shape

    In addition to these signs, trees growing in more ideal conditions will also be less susceptible to disease and stress, including pests and fungus.

    Signs of a diseased blue spruce

    A diseased blue spruce may show subtle signs at first. Be sure to watch out closely in trees that are growing outside their natural range or climate, as stressed trees will be more susceptible to tree blights. Older trees may also be at an increased risk, especially those older than 15 years of age. Disease often manifests in lower branches first. Signs of tree blight include browning needles, sap-like cankers, and dropped needles. The two most common diseases of the blue spruce are Cytospora Canker and Rhizosphaera Needle Cast.

    Cytospora Canker

    Caused by the fungus Cytospora kunzei, this disease typically progresses over years. Needles lose their blue color as a dried rust hue starts spreading, often resulting in purplish branches. Instead of stiff and prickly needles, these former evergreens become dry and brittle. Severe infections can also penetrate tree bark, often where the branch meets the trunk. The dead bark and sticky residue associated with this form the namesake canker. Cankers can often resemble tree sap caused by other injuries- making early diagnosis difficult.

    Treatment can be difficult, and the fungus is easy to spread. The best defense against canker disease is prevention. Whenever possible avoid stressing your tree by protecting against drought conditions and harsh freezes. Water adequately and mulch with 3-4″ of material in harsher climates. In diseased trees, avoid pruning when wet and clean all contaminated tools with rubbing alcohol to avoid spreading new spores. Fungicides in general, have shown little effect on this tree blight.

    Rhizosphaera Needle Cast

    Rhizosphaera refers to the fungus Rhizosphaera kalkhoffii. Usually spotted in late summer, this disease causes new needles to become mottled or speckled, turning purple-brown by the second year of infection. These browned needles then drop prematurely (not normal for an evergreen). While the signs begin to show in summer, this infection normally starts in early spring in the middle of the tree and then spread upward. Fortunately, this disease is unlikely to kill your spruce but will definitely affect its appearance and overall health.

    Fungus thrives in warm, wet weather. Removing dead branches and pruning clustered areas to promote ventilation can help control an infection. Alleviate stress such as drought by watering periodically. Copper-based fungicides can offer a preventive measure against needle cast, but cannot cure branches that are already infected. Professional landscapers and pest management services can help you determine the best fungicide and schedule for your area.

    Pest and Environmental Tree Blights

    As discussed, spruce trees grow best in their natural environments and can become stressed when planted in less desireable locations. This stress can leave your spruce susceptible to tree blights. In addition to the climate of your planting, it is important to plant in the correct soil. Excess moisture, herbicides, and imbalanced Ph due to salts or fertilizers can also have a detrimental effect on your tree.

    Pests may also post a problem. Pitch Mass Borers attack the trunk of a spruce, boring through the bark and leaving a sap-like residue. Unlike a fungus, borers usually kill the top of a tree first. Bark beetles are another common conifer pest, identified by the visible holes. Additional pest problems may include worms, miners, and mites.111bigstock-blue-spruce-144098594

    Understand what is causing your blue spruce tree blight by consulting a local Michigan landscaping professional. Correct identification of your problem can create a treatment plan allowing you to enjoy this coniferous beauty for many years to come.

  6. Walk In The ParkApart from creating an ideal environment for breeding mosquitoes, standing water will most likely wreak all sorts of havoc on your yard. Except for plants such as cattails and rice, many plants cannot tolerate having more than their roots submerged for over three days at a time. In addition to this immediate destruction of lawn plants, standing water often causes other damages that can prove long-lasting. Listed below are some additional damages caused by standing water.

    Compacted soil
    Once exposed to adequate amounts of standing water, even relatively light soil tends to become extremely compacted. As the water moves downward, it washes soil particles into the natural gaps and cracks usually found in topsoil. The level of compaction can only be made worse by treading over the affected areas. As such, human and animal traffic over such areas often worsens the compaction. As you may well know, plant roots need oxygen at all times. Soil compaction minimizes the amount of oxygen present in the ground. By inhibiting plant growth, soil compaction is one of the long-term problems caused by standing water.

    Plant deaths
    In the short-term, standing water in lawns prevents oxygen from getting to the roots of almost every featured type of vegetation. As a result, most of the affected plants will weaken and become vulnerable to attacks from fungi, bacteria, and insects well before they succumb to the lack of oxygen caused by standing water. To make matters worse, the majority of these assailants reproduce easier and at a faster rate in wet soil than they do in dry soil. Unfortunately, harmful agents such as bacteria often continue their work long after the ground begins to dry out. Because your lawn plants cannot counter the fungal, bacterial, and insect attacks in their weaken state, the result is usually death.

    Toxic soil
    Standing water usually leaves behind toxic residues. As the standing water soaks into the ground, it often pulls a variety of garden and lawn chemicals, commonly dispersed around the yard, towards a low-level point, resulting in highly concentrated chemical levels. Plants die after being cut off from oxygen, and their rotting and decaying roots often generate a couple of chemicals. Hydrogen sulfide, which smells like rotten eggs, is one of the gasses created by decaying plant material. This compound forms an acid when it dissolves in water. Unfortunately, it can result in an extremely high level of soil acidity. Additionally, fermentation often occurs whenever dying plants mix with water. The resultant ethyl alcohol is capable of contaminating soil. Until the alcohol finally breaks down, it can interfere with your future replanting efforts.

    Leached nutrients
    Standing water usually seeps down into the soil in your yard. As such, it not only fills in the air gaps necessary for plant growth with the loose soil particles it carries down, but it also pulls the essential minerals and nutrients often found in top soil deeper underground. The unfortunate result is that these vital nutrients and minerals are no longer within reach. Lacking adequate nutrients and minerals usually leads to weakened, malnourished, or dead plants.

    Increased cases of disease
    Wet conditions ideally support the proliferation of specific plant-damaging fungus and bacteria. Even if the standing water recedes during the dryer periods, the plant-damaging fungus and bacteria are still present underneath the soil in larger quantities than before. As such, any future attack by these harmful elements once favorable conditions reappear will most likely be in greater numbers. Fusarium fungi and plant parasites such as pythium are potential threats.

  7. Cracked FoundationBasements are an essential part of homes in Ann Arbor, Michigan. They get turned into recreational rooms for the grandchildren, small apartments for graduate students, and even storage spaces. So when one of them gets water leaks, it is a very discouraging and expensive mess that no one looks forward to. Because of this, it helps to know a few things about basement leaks that can help prevent some of the damage from occurring.

    The Correlation Between the Seasons and Water Leaks

    Basements can leak no matter what the weather is outside. However, the spring is the most common time of the year for this catastrophe to occur. Michigan gets a huge amount of snowfall and ice each winter, which usually won’t do any damage until the warmer weather hits. The increase in the temperature outside makes the wintery mix melt. When the extra moisture is mixed with heavy spring rains, it pours through the basement walls rapidly if they are not properly cared for.

    Why Leaks Happen

    A poorly constructed basement will not block out water as it is supposed to, so this is often the most likely cause of the leaks occurring. However, even new bricks, mortar, and cement can all begin to crumble if they are exposed to too much moisture for too long. So the next common cause of basement leaks is poor drainage. Water has to be diverted away, so the house will stay dry. And the last cause has to do with the plumbing. If water or sewer lines going to the house happen to break or leak, they can cause water to seep through the walls too.

    Water Damaged BasementPreventing Leaks

    Ann Arbor, Michigan residents have unique challenges when it comes to home maintenance. The spring is the most common time of the year for leaks to occur, but there is little that can be done to fix this problem in the winter season that happens beforehand. It is just too cold and wet outside to do any repairs. So this means that work done to prevent leaks usually has to happen in the summer or early fall seasons. Some of the preventative repairs that can be done during this time include:

    -Digging French drains to trap water away from the home
    -Inspecting the outside of the home for signs of cracks or loose bricks where water could get through and repairing any that are found
    -Installing eave spouts to divert rainwater away from the foundation
    -Inspecting and repairing plumbing lines that are inside the home

    Landscaping and Basement Leaks

    The last area that should be considered to protect the basement from leaks is often the one that is the most important, and that is taking care of the landscaping. Landscapers can build beautiful retaining walls that block water from over-saturating the ground next to the home. They can also plant trees, shrubs, and other plants that can help to absorb some of the extra water from the ground. Once the warmer, dryer weather begins, they can maintain these plants and the rest of the lawn too.

  8. DrainageAlthough the good weather might seem like a relief, especially after winter or a heavy rainstorm, the probability of storm water damage is just beginning. Runoff water often overwhelms natural and human-made systems quickly, causing flooding and property damage. Taking the necessary measures to prepare your yard and home for proper drainage helps you to avoid costly, and time-consuming repairs after the bad weather.

    In a natural environment, runoff water usually is absorbed by the soil, flows into water bodies such as streams, rivers, and lakes, or evaporates into the atmosphere. However, recreating this natural environment on your property to address runoff water might be necessary. The measures to take include planting different types of vegetation such as trees, building rain gardens, and installing cisterns or rain barrels for roof water collection.

    How can you protect your Michigan home from storm water this fall?
    Understanding the unique features of your property is the key to developing and implementing a suitable and effective yard drainage system. Going outside during a storm and observing how the water flows by taking note of the different slopes and gradients as well as whether or not they divert water from your home is important. Look for low spots pooling or collecting water and for steep slopes with signs of surface erosion.

    You should consider the measures necessary to protect your home from water runoff. Rainwater falling on roofs, patios, driveways, and other impervious areas usually moves across the ground surface at high speeds. As such, the property near such areas often is more susceptible to stormwater damage. Because it prevents the absorption of water, frozen soil increases the risk of damage. Replacing the impervious locations with porous surfaces such as pavers or permeable paving stones might also help. Some of the other questions to consider include:

    I
    s the stormwater falling on impervious surfaces diverted from your home?

    Impervious surfaces include patios, walkways, driveways, and roof gutter downspouts. You should direct the runoff water from such surfaces away from your house and to the areas capable of absorbing or slowing the flow like landscaped areas.

    Is there a stream, pond, or lake nearby?
    It is vital to consider the floods potential and how it could impact your property. You can research your local flood maps since they usually entail the flood water levels of various storm events.

    Impervious surfaces
    Whether or not any impervious surface in your home has a negative pitch back
    The installation of area drains or trench drains helps to prevent pooling and also diverts water away from your house.

    OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

    Do you have retaining walls?
    If your property has retaining walls, having a drainage system installed to alleviate pressure behind the wall is important. You should also clean weep holes periodically to ensure they do not clog. Do not allow the surface water to cascade over your retaining walls. Divert the water around or to the end of these walls instead.

    Is any part of your house below ground level?
    Ensure you properly seal any foundation cracks and plumbing lines penetrating subsurface walls. Install a water collection system like a sump pump if your basement is prone to water intrusion.

    Although preventing against all potential damages resulting from storm water runoff during heavy acts of nature is almost impossible, the measures mentioned above can help you to protect your home whenever the storms hit.

  9. Maple tree foliage in autumn.Trees that stand up to the pressures of fall seem to be deciduous trees in temperate climates. These are trees that lose their leaves all at once during the fall and live in areas where the differences between the seasonal temperatures are not extreme.

    Why Do Deciduous Trees Lose Their Leaves?
    Botanists believe that deciduous trees lose their leaves so the energy that would normally be used to support the leaves is returned to the branches and twigs. The energy can be stored in the bare branches until the next spring. Losing leaves all at once also lets the tree conserve water during the winter, as water passes from the leaves into the air through transpiration. Whether a tree is deciduous or not also depends on the hardiness zone. Trees that lose their leaves in temperate climates might keep them in tropical or semitropical climates. This can be seen in trees of the oak family. The willow oak is deciduous in the northern part of its range, but at least semi-evergreen in the southern part of its range.

    Many of these types of deciduous trees have spectacular fall colors because of these processes. The vein system in the leaf stops receiving nutrients and water, and the chlorophyll that made humans perceive the leaves as different shades of green starts to breakdown. This reveals other colors like yellows, oranges, reds and purples. These colors are created by pigments called anthocyanin, carotene and xanthophyll.

    What About Evergreens?
    Spruce Tree Isolated On White BackgroundEvergreen trees also do well during the fall. These trees also lose their leaves or needles but not all at once. They withstand the coming cold weather because the leaves have a tough layer of cells that protect them. Evergreens with needle-like leaves such as pines have less surface area that allow them to withstand very cold temperatures. This is why conifers can grow at elevations that broad leafed deciduous trees usually can’t. Broad leafed evergreens tend to grow in climates that are warm all year.

    Some deciduous trees that can endure the fall are:

    • Oak Trees
    This is a huge family of trees. Many of the members, like the English oak, can live for hundreds of years. They are known for their acorns, which develop from the female flowers. Male and female flowers grow separately but on the same tree in the oak family. The wood of many types of oaks is used in construction and furniture making.

    • Maple
    Maples can be trees or shrubs. The deciduous plants have opposite leaves, which are sometimes deeply lobed and sometimes toothed. The fruits are the familiar “keys,” which are blown away by the wind or carried by flowing water. Like the oak, the maple’s wood is used to make furniture, flooring and musical instruments.

    • Birch
    The birch is grown as much for the beauty of its trunk as well as its leaves. Like the oak, the birch produces male and female flowers on the same tree, though the males come in the late autumn and only release their pollen in the spring. At that time, they form catkins called lamb’s tails. The female catkins are smaller and are found above the male catkins.

    • Horse Chestnuts and Buckeyes
    These deciduous trees are known for their beautiful “candles” of white or red flowers that appear in mid-spring. The fruits are the popular chestnuts.

  10. drainage - does your yard look like thisThe not so heavy rainfall that usually occurs in autumn softens the ground, which makes regarding much easier in the fall compared to the other seasons, especially when combined with autumn’s cool temperatures. Re-grading to alter the slope of your lawn provides an excellent drainage solution to drainage issues, and you can usually accomplish such alterations by redistributing the soil in your lawn. You will, however, need the right types of soil, materials, tools, and instructions to be sure the changes you effect on the slope of your lawn solve your drainage problems. Below are the steps you should follow to effectively re-grade your yard during the fall.

    You will need a shovel, wood stakes, a backhoe, and string.

    STEPS:
    Identify what is causing the drainage problem
    Before you alter the slope in your yard, examine the lawn for depressed spots in which water might pool as it drains. You should also assess the subsoil and topsoil in your yard to determine the soil’s basic composition. Water usually flows much faster on clay-based soil than it does on sand-based or loam-based soils. If adding soil to alter the slope in your yard is your intention, it is important that you settle on a type of soil that creates the right drainage.

    Locate your utility lines
    Check for telephone, electrical, water, sprinkler or sewer lines before you start digging up the yard to remove soil from higher areas. Some or all of these utility lines might be buried in your yard, which means you can damage them while digging. Use colored flags to mark any lines you find buried in your lawn and try to determine how deep they are buried. You can check with local utilities or even have their technicians locate these service lines for you if necessary.

    Determine the degree of your slope
    Start by determining the high and low points of the drainage slope. The lowest point should be where water drains into a storm sewer, gutter, or holding pond while the high point should be near your home’s foundation. At each point, drive a stake into the ground and tie one end of the string to each of the stakes. Remember to ensure the string is taut. Measure the sloping degree starting from the high point to the low one once you are done tying the string. The slope should drop at least 12 inches every 50 feet. Ensure you tie the string at the same level from the ground for both stakes.

    Alter your slope
    Depending on what you find more practical, you can do one of the following to alter the slope in your yard and create better drainage:
    • Remove soil from the lower point.
    • Add soil to the slope’s high point.
    • Move the existing soil from the lower point to the higher point.

    If you will need to bring in more soil, try to choose a type similar to the existing soil since this ensures the drainage will be consistent throughout your yard.