Unlike surface features of your landscape, grading and drainage are final. They're nearly impossible to change after they're in. If you have the slightest doubt about the wisdom, safety, or legality of what you're doing, have it looked at by a qualified professional.
Don't forget to include French drains behind retaining walls and anywhere you have groundwater getting into the house. A French drain is a ditch with a perforated drainpipe in the bottom — an upside-down version of the Dutch drain I introduce earlier in this chapter. Like the Dutch drain, the French drain is lined with filter fabric to keep soil out but let water in; it's filled with coarse crushed rock to create a porous zone that attracts water from the surrounding area. Water goes down into the pipe and can be sent to a suitable place for safe use. (In short, French drains absorb troublesome water and take it away, whereas Dutch drains take water from somewhere else and let it soak in.)
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How would you like to save a ton of money and increase the value of your home by as much as thirty percent! If your homes landscape is designed properly it will be a source of enjoyment for your entire family, it will enhance your community and add to the resale value of your property. Landscape design involves much more than placing trees, shrubs and other plants on the property. It is an art which deals with conscious arrangement or organization of outdoor space for human satisfaction and enjoyment.