Downspouts are responsible for directing water away from your house so their arrangement can often be the most important part of any stormwater management plan. Many damp basements and soggy landscapes are caused by improper downspout arrangements.
The goal should be to direct water into areas where it will not pose a threat to your foundation or landscape features.
There are endless options for where a downspout can be directed once disconnected. Rain arbors are great for bringing downspouts over top of walkways or patios without causing a tripping hazard. Drain receptors can be installed to help drain water underground and away from foundations.
The traditional practice of directing water into municipal drains and sewers has been a primary contributor to urban flooding as many municipalities encourage or even mandate downspout disconnection.
No two properties are exactly alike, so no two gardens should be exactly alike. By carefully considering aspects like: desired aesthetic, available space, soil conditions, watering needs, location to adjacent buildings, and topography of the land each garden is custom designed and built. Native soils can be amended with materials like compost and gravel to achieve the desired soil properties. The soil mixture may be the most important part of any garden and with the right approach raingardens can even work on clay soils.
Raingardens double as pollinator and butterfly gardens. Planting native wildflowers, grasses, shrubs, and trees can enhance biodiversity on any property.
This concept is all about absorbing rainwater into the landscape to reduce or eliminate the need for irrigation infrastructure like sprinklers and pipes. By using rainwater to satisfy your watering requirements rainwater storage devices like rain barrels or cisterns are not always necessary, but can be incorporated into the landscape when desired. These systems are very adaptable and work best when customized to your properties unique characteristics.
Basic rules to follow when infiltration stormwater on your property:
- Keep any infiltration features a minimum of 10 feet and downhill from the foundation
- Identify areas that will be used for storage, conveyance, and infiltration
- Amend soil to ensure it drains well and is hospitable to the appropriate plant varieties
- Select the appropriate plant varieties based on personal preferences and local growing conditions
Harvesting rainwater can drastically reduce or eliminate the need to use municipally treated tap water. Rainwater storage devices are available in a variety of sizes and styles and can be installed either above or below ground, depending on property conditions and customer preferences. They work great as a part of a larger stormwater management system.
Landscape erosion can take many forms. The common thread when experiencing landscape erosion is water is not being drained properly. It is a worth while exercise to inspect your landscape for signs of erosion: bare or exposed soil, soil/debris deposits, slumping hardscape. Erosion is something that should be addressed as soon as it is detected. Over time it often worsens and leads to other associated landscape failures. Erosion can be addressed using simple measures like grading, planting, berms, and improving soil quality. There are a number of landscape products that address erosion and can be customized to fit the needs of each landscape.