How to fix a waterlogged lawn
How to fix a waterlogged lawn
It’s estimated that it rains in the UK 156 days a year with the wettest months being November and October. So, it’s no surprise that plenty of homeowners up and down the UK are faced with flooding in their gardens every so often.
Flooding on your lawn can be the result of several different things, but before you try to solve the issue, you need to get to the root of the problem first (no pun intended!).
Checking for a waterlogged lawn
This might sound a bit obvious – but if a lawn is either partly or fully covered by water that fails to drain away after a few days it is safe to say it’s waterlogged!
If it hasn’t been raining heavily for a while it may not be immediately obvious that your lawn is prone to waterlogging. It’s worthwhile checking your lawn after a heavy downpour of rain to see how well rain water drains away.
Take time to go out to your lawn and get a close look and feel, while there may not be puddles on the surface of your lawn, there may be signs of waterlogging below the soil surface. A squelchy lawn normally indicates imminent waterlogging or a lawn that has a lot of moss growth. By checking your lawn before it gets to the stage where puddles are covering it, you can get to work at preventing this from happening!
Does it really matter if my lawn is waterlogged?
Aside from being unsightly and downright frustrating, if your grass is submerged in water for days on end this can create multiple issues. A waterlogged lawn is the same as an overwatered lawn, and your grass will become yellow the longer it is left, and may eventually die off. Wet and moist conditions in your lawn also create favourable conditions for pests such as leatherjackets and for lawn diseases like red thread. So, it really is in your best interest to find out what causes a waterlogged lawn, and how to solve it which we will explain next!
What causes a flooded lawn?
First things first – you need to find out where the problem is. Rainfall is of course the main contributing factor to a flooded lawn, but you need to find out why it is forming puddles instead of flowing through the soil.
Normally, this is due to soil compaction. A healthy lawn will have great soil composition meaning that there are open pockets to allow for the free flow of air, nutrients and water. But, over time, walking, playing, and running across your lawn can cause this soil composition to become compacted. This means that not only will nutrients and air struggle to pass through, but also water. So, when heavy rainfall comes along, the water has no option but to form puddles across your lawn.
If you have clay soils, you will also find that your lawn will struggle to drain water away from the surface easily. Clay soils are quite dense and can result in poor drainage across your lawn. Something else to check for is lots of moss. If you have lots of shade, you may also struggle with moss in your lawn. Moss can retain water and keep areas wetter for longer, so make sure to scarify your lawn regularly and / or work to remove moss from your lawn.
Make sure the problem doesn’t return!
As with most things, prevention is better than the cure! Making sure that you have a good lawn care regime throughout the year – even in the colder months – will go a long way in preventing things like flooding from occurring. Sometimes, flooding can still occur, but if your lawn is healthy it will be much more resilient to the damage.
Keep your lawn well aired!
Aerating your lawn is one of the most obvious ways to prevent flooding. If you are doing this after a spell of rainfall, make sure your lawn surface has dried out first. Regular aeration is essential throughout the spring and summer months to help minimise the compaction of the soil, which will in turn help to minimise waterlogging in the autumn and winter.
Keep your lawn thick!
Overseeding is a really good way to help prevent flooding on your lawn as it encourages you to level out any uneven areas and remove thatch that has built up on the lawn. Making sure to do this each year will maintain your lawn thickness and health. Continuing to overseed your lawn each year will improve the root structure and density. This will make your lawn better at absorbing rainfall the next time it comes around!
Keep your lawn fit and healthy!
Feeding your lawn will also help your grass to recover should it be subjected to any flooding as it helps your grass to build up a strong and resilient root system. You should feed your lawn in summer with a 16 week feed and also in winter. In between feeds you can top up your lawn nutrients with a 6 week quick fix.