July 7, 2021

Some areas are more prone to clay soil than others, and if you live in an area where the soil has a heavy clay content, there is not much you can do to change the composition. In fact, many builders can make clay soil worse. Machinery will break down the air pockets, and the topsoil layer added at the end will simply cause water to be trapped underneath. However, if you have clay soil, you are not doomed to looking at a soggy lawn forever.

Oversoaked lawn in residential neighborhood.

Why Is Clay Soil Such a Problem?

All soil is a mix of clay, sand, and silt. When your soil has a higher percentage of clay, it is made up of dense, finely packed particles. If the soil is too dense, it can become waterlogged and will not allow for adequate drainage. When clay soil holds onto the water, you may find your yard and gardens develop areas of standing water. Standing water can cause plenty of problems for a homeowner. If the water is pooling near your foundation you may develop structural damage to your home. Standing water is also a breeding ground for mold, mildew, fungus, and insects.

Solutions to Keep Your Lawn Dry

Although there are landscapers who will try to tell you the soil can be amended, trying to change the composition of clay soil is not a practical solution. Finding drainage solutions with an experienced drainage contractor is much more effective. The three most effective solutions for heavy clay content in soil are catch basins, soakaways, and channel drains.

Catch basins may also be referred to as area drains or storm drains. They collect runoff water and divert it to low spots or water collection systems. Catch basins are most effective in small areas, such as gardens.

Soakaways collect water that cannot be effectively drained to another area and are best used away from the house. A soakaway can be filled with small stone or river rock, left open, or covered with a layer of sod.

Channel drains work well alongside the house, driveway, or patio. Channel drains divert the water away from the property to a low-lying area. All of these solutions can be worked into the landscaping and will contribute to the beauty of the property as well as address the drainage issues.

Use a Drainage Contractor with Clay Soil Experience

Effectively dealing with clay soil requires a drainage contractor with experience. Without a drainage contractor who is knowledgeable about clay soil, any drainage solution you implement may not be as effective. Local drainage contractors typically understand the soil in your area and will be able to effectively develop a plan to keep your lawn looking great. These experienced contractors will be able to assess your clay content and they understand how to tailor a solution for your property.

Heavy clay soil does not doom you to a soggy lawn full of standing water every time it rains. The right drainage contractor can find a drainage solution to keep your property dry and beautiful throughout the year. Twin Oaks Landscape is used to working with clay soil in the Ann Arbor area and we know what it takes to create a long-term remedy for this situation. If you suspect your lawn has heavy clay and you are experiencing issues with poor drainage, contact us today.