How Do You Grow Grass Over a French Drain?
When you cut the sod off, you want to take the sod cutter and go as deep as you possibly can. Set it on the deepest setting for the sod cutter. Then, you want to go ahead and just cut the pieces just 18-inches. That’s it. Take a 14-inch real heavy flat shovel and you can just go ahead and pick them up and put them aside. It’ll go back together just like a puzzle. This is the best way to remove sod and then have the sod set aside in a manner to where it’s really easy when the French drain system is complete, to go ahead and just start putting the sod back together just like a puzzle.
That sod will go back in just the way it came out. You can see we took two and a half inches of root with the turf. They do have sprinklers, so even in the drought, they will be able to keep this alive over the French drain system. I’ve had people in the past ask this question before. How do your drains fair during the drought season? Yes. You do have to water where the French drain is if you don’t have sprinklers.
In Michigan, July and August are our drought season. That’s when you’d have to apply some water. That’s the prescription add water. Keep the sod alive and healthy and happy. Most of the people that have us come and improve their drainage, they’re really proud about their yards. They take really good care of their homes and their yards, so they’re going to water one way or another to keep their bluegrasses is looking really nice throughout the summer.
Nobody here just lets their yard go dormant and look like a hay field, so it’s not a problem. But I’ve had people ask this, call the office, email me. Will the sod actually grow over your French drain system during the drought? You do have to water it. Through spring, fall, winter, no issues here in Michigan. We just have those couple of months where we don’t get any rain, July and August. Those are the two months where you do have to water periodically. And you can tell when it starts to dry and it needs a little bit of water. It lets you know, you can see it drying out.
So there are some tips about how we take the sod off, how we go about building our drains. We don’t need inlet basins because we build them this way. This is like one giant channel drain. There’s no better French drain period than a gravel French drain built this way.