I just bought a house a couple of months ago, and like many suburban lots, the property has a drainage easement that runs along the sides. One side has a stone culvert pipe that moves water away from the property, the other side appears to have no particular drainage method, other than slightly sloping toward the culvert. The latter side is constantly soggy and muddy, with standing water, and it turns into a veritable river during rainstorms. I attached an image below showing the slope of the yard and the problem area.

I'm going to contact the county surveyor to see if they will do anything since the easement is not draining correctly (I don't see how it ever did in the first place - the house is 14 years old). But, assuming they won't do anything, is there a particular fix that works best for these side-property drainage easements? I've looked into french ditches, re-sodding, and laying perforated pipe - it's difficult to know which method has the best chance of working.

EDIT: There have been other questions on this site regarding pooling of water near the house - I'm referring specifically to a faulty drainage easement along an entire side.

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  • Have you considered planting shrubs there that love extra water? I am thinking blueberries, cranberries and other vibernum
    – Escoce
    Apr 14 '15 at 15:59
  • 1
    This link will show you a number of similar questions and solutions gardening.stackexchange.com/search?q=drainage
    – kevinskio
    Apr 14 '15 at 16:50
  • @Escoce Sorry to hijack this thread. do you know of any water loving ground cover for around a wooden fence gate?
    – Danger14
    Apr 14 '15 at 17:21
  • @Escoce Since this is a public drainage easement, anything planted there would be subject to removal by the county. That wouldn't bother me too much, except one of the main reasons I'm wanting to fix this is because the family dog often wanders back there and gets caked in mud (even after several days of dry weather).
    – Elden Abob
    Apr 14 '15 at 17:57
  • @Escoce Blueberries would be a bad choice, as although they like moist/damp soil, they don't like wet feet. They like moist free draining soil, thus their native range.
    – J. Musser
    Apr 14 '15 at 23:18

There are many native species that love water, and will work on filtering the water. Grasses/sedges are the easiest to get going and prevent exposed soil.

Following is a list of species available from seed from a wholesale public works grower in New England.

Lurid Sedge, (Carex lurida), Blunt Broom Sedge, (Carex scoparia), Blue Vervain, (Verbena hastata), Hop Sedge, (Carex lupulina), Green Bulrush, (Scirpus atrovirens), Redtop Panic Grass, (Panicum rigidulum), Tufted Hairgrass, (Deschampsia cespitosa), Tickseed Sunflower/Bur Marigold, (Bidens aristosa), Creeping Spike Rush, (Eleocharis palustris), Soft Rush, (Juncus effusus), Fringed Sedge, (Carex crinita), Square Stemmed Monkey Flower, (Mimulus ringens), Swamp Aster, (Aster puniceus), Boneset, (Eupatorium perfoliatum), Rattlesnake Grass, (Glyceria canadensis), Swamp Milkweed, (Asclepias incarnata), Common Sneezeweed, (Helenium autumnale), Ditch Stonecrop, (Penthorum sedoides)

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