Water management

Earthworks & Drainage

The shape of the earth, the grading of your yard, determines the intensity & direction of water flow during a rainfall event.  Rain events in central Texas are intense & heavy, yet few & far between.  Thus, our goal is to keep as much of the moisture on your property without causing property or landscape damage.  Read on to see how you can accomplish this with one of our earthwork & drainage options.



Berms & swales are earthworks designed to manipulate the flows of water across a terrain to maximize the moisture content & have been used by farmers for centuries on hilly terrain to help control erosion & increase yields.  These earthworks cooperate with the topography of the land to gently move water & allow it to permeate into the soil.  Slowing water down is one of the key tenents of permaculture.




Terracing is typically an option explored when the terrain is too front steel planters2steep for berms & swales, but the general idea is the same.  By creating steps and grading, we can slow the water down & break its momentum.  Terraces are used often in urban landscaping instead of berms or swales because they result in a more utilitarian space.







A raingarden is a landscaping feature that temporarily stores storm water. mitra raingarden A water-conscious landscaper’s goal is to hold all of the available water on the property as long as possible, to let it soak into the ground, without causing property or landscape damage due to erosion or ponding.  Our goal is to slow the water down, and a rain garden does exactly that.  There are many plants in our area that have adapted to these temporary deluges of water, and they are a perfect fit for the rain garden.




In many situations, runoff  comes from an inconvenient direction & almost immediately threatens toIMAG0431 damage our homes & yards, this is especially true of homes on sloping terrain.  The solution here can often be french drain.  This drainage system captures water in a gravel trench & diverts it in an underground pipe to another part of yard where it won’t cause damage.  Another option is to install the drain onto a gutter and then direct it to a place in the yard that could use extra water, like under the drip line of a large tree.  In this case, the french drain acts like an underground reservoir that slows the water down & allows the water to infiltrate into the soil, instead of causing erosion.





Many of us have driveways that slope downhill toward the house.  This can be particularly problematic Floor drainbecause the impervious concrete can send the water right into your garage.  Often this can be solved with a drain grate.  If you’re considering a new driveway, checkout our pervious paver options that will absorb some of the water and further prevent runoff.