Lawn grass/ground cover

lylesg1May 20, 2013

Hi, My name is Lyle and I am new to this group. I am glad I found this forum, too.
I have a question that I hope someone can shed light on.

I have an area along the front (northern) side of my house that will get approx. 6-8 hours of direct sunlight each day during spring and summer months. The area I am working with is 10'X30'. I want to first cover this area with a good quality black plastic and then top coat the plastic with approximately 4-6" of soil. Is there a lawn grass, or ground cover that I can plant in that amount of soil thickness that will survive year round?

My problem is water seeping into my basement in that area. I removed the shrubs from the space and I compacted additional soil sloping it away from my house for approx. 10' out and then covered that area with plastic and I have solved my water seepage into basement issue. But, I now want to leave the plastic and cover it with grass/ground cover if feasible.

Any ideas from you guys would be greatly appreciated.


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This would be a highly unconventional solution to the problem and you will be thought poorly of by a future owner of the home. Embedding plastic sheeting under several inches of soil would be a real pain to undo later. Are you sure you have not corrected the problem just by regrading the soil so that it slopes away from the house? I would double check this first as you may have no need for plastic at all.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2013 at 7:37PM
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Hi Yardvaark, Perhaps I have solved the leak issue by already sloping and packing new soil directed away from the house. Also, I intend to bury a 4" dia drain for the gutter run-off and perhaps beside that drain pipe do you think a French drain would be a good idea? Put both drain pipes in the same ditch. I was thinking of burying it along side the concrete walk.


    Bookmark   May 20, 2013 at 7:46PM
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It is better, if at all possible, to drain the water at the surface than to put it into a buried pipe--which will be additional maintenance and can cause problems later... as well as not protect you from flooding in a major rain. You haven't made a case for needing underground drainage. If you're adding it just because you're trying to throw money at a problem, it's not a good idea. In most cases, you should only use underground drainage if the water has no other possible way to escape and leave your property.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2013 at 8:03PM
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After considering what both you and Carl have posted, I think that I will now remove the tarp and add a couple more inches of soil increasing the slop away from the house even more than it is now. In the past the concrete side walk seems to have been a barrier helping trap water between it and the house. But, that was before I filled the old shrub holes and added additional slope. I will see how that works out and it would be great if nothing additional is needed. My water supply line is at the beginning of the picture approx. 2' below grade and in the past water has seeped in there. I may have to give that area additional attention after removing the tarp.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2013 at 8:16PM
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Good luck. It would be great if slope alone solves your problem.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2013 at 8:30PM
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