How to create a wet meadow garden
Back to landscaping with native plants
- Find a location that is relatively level, downhill from the
house, and takes advantage of runoff from hard surfaces (e.g., pavement,
roof). Look for areas where water already sits after a rain, or where water
runs past on the way to the storm sewer.
- Dig down 2-3 feet in the center of the area. Dig out from
the center gradually sloping the sides of a depression to the size of the
wet meadow you want to create. On clay soils, the depression only needs
to be deep enough to capture water (1-2 feet).
- On sandy soils, place a liner in the depression. Rubber liners
available at landscaping outlets work best. Cut the liner to twice the
size of the depression. A kiddie pool can be used for a liner, but will
not last as long. Fill the liner with the soil you dug out, leaving a slight
depression. On extremely sandy or heavy clay soils, add organic mulch to
the soil to improve plant survival.
- Slope the adjacent area so that overflow water, from the wet
meadow during extremely wet conditions, does not back up to the house.
- Plant the area with plants suggested above.
- During extremely dry conditions, you may need to water your