Landscaping Projects to Divert Storm Runoff

Written by Builders Sand & Gravel Inc. on . Posted in Blog

drain rockSpring showers, summer storms, and dreary fall and winter rainfall can all wreak havoc on a yard. Too much moisture can accumulate in your grass or garden, creating a spongy mess. In some cases, poor lawn drainage can even damage your home’s structure through flooding. 

Luckily, smart landscape design using drain rock can redirect storm runoff to minimize property damage. Try any combination of the following projects for better control of rainwater and better protection of your property:


  1. Swales

    Swales are essentially man-made riverbeds that channel runoff in more desirable directions. Often resembling a dry creek, swales can be used at the base of slopes and hills or around a house to divert water towards a drainage area. Thick-rooted plants are often used to slow water’s progress to a drain to prevent overflows. Though swales can be simple grassy ditches, drain rocks or washed gravel is often used to prevent the swale from eroding. 

  2. Rain Gardens

    Another attractive way to control runoff and floodwater is to build and plant a rain garden. Rain gardens provide a place for water to pool during downpours, and incorporate plants that love a good soak. Beneath the flowerbed, a catch basin is used to trap water temporarily and slow its flow into the surrounding soil. The soil in the garden itself is fast-draining to encourage rapid absorption. Sometimes, an underdrain of drain rock is needed to ensure water is dispersed back into the surrounding earth. 

  3. Self-Draining Driveways

    Finally, self-draining driveways that utilize drainage gravel can help prevent water from pooling during storms. Concrete and asphalt driveways are non-permeable, which means rainwater puddles and are directed to surrounding soils, which are often already saturated. Using gravel in combination with drainage trenches can help redirect the flow of rainwater away from more important areas, like basements or garages. 

Some driveways use layers of crushed gravel to create a drainage basin beneath the driveway’s surface for greater protection. When installing any gravel driveway, experts recommended using three layers of different sizes of rock: baseball-sized rocks at the bottom, golf ball-sized rocks in the middle, and marble-sized rocks for the uppermost layer.

Using these smart drainage techniques, you can protect your home from floods and unwanted moisture during storms and rainy seasons. 

For more information regarding drain rock, topsoil, rockery rocks or gravel delivery in King and Snohomish Counties, contact Builders Sand and Gravel today!