French Drain= Fenceline Swale Solution

For the last…2 and a half years? I forget… We’ve been fighting against runoff from our neighbor’s place. Technically, it’s from the cattle pasture on the other side of our neighbor’s place… I digress.

Anyway, with the latest storm and flash flood, we (almost) lost our potatoes, tomatoes and peppers, kale, rhubarb, Fennel, Lavender, Swiss chard– it was a mess. There are a lot of things that are hanging on thanks to quick action on my husband’s part digging trenches… But… it still is a mess. I mostly want to fix the water flow issue before I remulch and replant the area.

Can I take this opportunity to praise my husband’s ditch digging abilities? Seriously, his shoveling speed is mind-blowing. And I’m over here hitting every possible rock and tree root, whining and sweating and overheating, but by glory, I got it dug!

So, French drain!

We’d been mitigating the heavy rain fall by employing mulched swales. However, while it was effective in prevention and detention, it lacked efficacy in retention and conveyance.

The goal is to catch the runoff, deter it, prevent it from washing out the gardens, convey it elsewhere.

This is where it’s coming in. We’ll install a catch basin here.

Then the corrugated pipe will run it down the slope below grade, and around the garden.

It will empty here, for now.

It will contribute to the driveway water feature we have on the property during heavy rains, but, it can be connected to a potential duck pond, or we can run another french drain system across the driveway and put it near our weeping willow tree.

That grassy area between hickory trees could also be built into a rain garden. My possibilities are numerous.

But first, I’d like to see if this drain works the way I’m hoping before we do more than a semi-permanent structure.

Luckily, tomorrow’s forecast is thunderstorms all day long, so we may not have to wait very long to gauge efficacy

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