The Q&A Archives: Changing the grade of my lawn slope

Question: At the present time, my lawn is sloping in toward the house, bringing all rainwater toward our foundation. I know I need get some soil and reslope the grade, but are there any tips/advice we need to heed...we will have flower beds and shrubs that may be affected...

Answer: Grading is complex and small changes can have large effects, not always intended. Generally speaking you need to protect your home's foundation from excess water and this can create or require big changes in how your overall property drains. I would strongly suggest you work with a landscape architect or other trained professional with experience in grading and drainage to analyze the drainage situation and design the needed changes. It might be as simple as adding some soil around the foundation and changing where your downspouts are located but it might be far more complex, requiring for example installing an underground drainage system around the foundation and a series of swales to carry away the excess surface runoff. Your plants will most certainly be affected, either due to drier soil in the beds or due to changes in grade. Most plants will not tolerate much change in the surface level so you will probably need to dig them up and replant them after the changes are made. I hope all goes well.

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