When the rainy season comes, many of us have to think of how to cover up mud in backyard areas. It’s often difficult to keep soil and dirt from turning into pits of mud that make your outdoor areas unpleasant.
If you are struggling with covering up mud in your backyard, we’re here to help. Landscape maintenance is not as difficult as you thought. Here are 12 fantastic ways to cover up or deal with mud.
1. Rain Garden Installation
The first suggestion is to turn the area into a rain garden instead. Rain gardens are inexpensive and low-maintenance areas that can help to dry up the muddy areas. Plants used in rain gardens thrive on wet soil and suck up more water than most plants.
Rain gardens are simple and easy to make. Till the mud, add fresh soil and compost, and level the area. The garden will work to trap water for the plants, funneling it away from other areas of your yard.
A rain garden may have plants such as Boneset, Bottle Gentian, Blazing Star, and many others. They also beautify the area when the flowers bloom. It’s the perfect way to get the mud out of your yard while adding another thing to make your yard more pleasant.
2. Creeper Plants
Another great thing to add to your yard to deal with mud is creeper plants. Creeping plants are quickly-growing plants that can act as ground cover. These plants require an abundance of water, which helps them thrive in a muddy, saturated lawn.
They’re also relatively cheap in comparison to many other plants. The maintenance is low, and when they’ve grown fully, they’ll add blossoming flowers to your yard. Some creepers include Clover, Irish Moss, Creeping Thyme, and Winter Creeper. Composting with pine flakes or other such materials can help them grow even quicker.
One trade-off is that creeper plants tend to be very fragile. It’s suggested to keep them away from foot paths to stop them from being trampled and killed. Planting them on either side of a foot path will help suck the water away from the path itself.
3. Cover With Mulch
Mulch and wood chips are both wonderful materials for covering wet soil. An added benefit is that the wood will eventually decompose and add nutrients to the soil in your yard. This is a great way to plan for a future garden, such as a rain garden.
Mulch is a bit different from wood chips but just as effective. Mulch is made of matter such as wood, dried leaves, and other coarse organic matter. It’s another great way to add nutrients to the soil and dry it out at the same time.
However, it can look somewhat strange if placed in the middle of your yard. Wood chips and mulch are best for perimeters such as near a fence or garden.
4. Gravel Pathing
While mulch and creeper plants aren’t great for pathways, gravel is. Gravel is one of the best possible solutions as it can handle foot traffic and also prevents soil from washing away during rain. Gravel is also relatively inexpensive and easy to spread. Smaller types like pea gravel are even easier to work with.
The only downside is that gravel will only cover the mud and not deal with the water as other solutions might. In cases with a high amount of water, gravel can actually create more mud. That means it might not work perfectly for an overly muddy lawn.
5. Lay Down Hay or Straw
Hay and straw are other inexpensive options you can use to cover up a muddy yard. Unlike gravel, hay and straw both absorb water rather quickly. Laid down in a thick layer, hay makes a comfortable and appealing path.
This solution is not a long-term solution, though. Hay and straw will also begin to decompose and wilt away quickly. On windy days, you run the risk of your path being partially blown away.
Laying down hay or straw is a good quick fix for your backyard. Make sure that it isn’t the only fix that you’re applying long-term.
6. Pathing Constructions
One long-term fix is to construct a path. While gravel and hay are good for paths, neither is exceptionally long-term. For that, you’ll want to use heavier materials.
Consider using cobblestones to make a path across the soil. Using enough cobblestones to cover a muddy patch will solve your issue easily. It’s also a nice and rustic aesthetic for an outdoor area.
7. Pave Over With Concrete
You may find yourself with a path too large to drop a few cobblestones over. If your entire yard is muddy, you could find yourself needing a stronger fix. For that, consider paving over the mud entirely.
Smaller properties can simply pave with concrete to cover the mud. This also prevents dust and debris from entering your home. Support the concrete beneath properly with a solid foundation and this fix will last for years on end.
Some may not want their backyard to have a concrete floor. If you don’t mind installing concrete, it’s a great way to completely eliminate mud.
8. Plant a Tree
Another long-term fix is to plant a tree to suck up the excess water in your yard. Trees need much more water than plants given their size, which will swiftly drain away most mud.
You also will have a lovely tree to enjoy in your yard. The shade and decoration it adds will make your backyard a more enjoyable place. Plant the tree as close to the muddy patch as possible to ensure the water is sucked away properly.
The use of quicklime or hydrated lime has become a popular, quick fix to a muddy yard. When lime comes in contact with the mud, water causes a chemical reaction. This spreads the lime and quickly dries up all the water. Some use kitty litter for the same purpose.
This is great for a one-time fix after a rainy day where you need to get the mud gone fast. Spreading quicklime is easy, especially with the right tools, and it’s relatively inexpensive. It won’t change your yard and works swiftly. If you just need to get the water out in a pinch, lime is a great way to do it.
One fix that’s much more involved is the planting of sod. Preparing the soil beforehand with tilling or planting fertilizers can make sod more likely to be successful. Once the grass roots properly, it will suck up the extra moisture. An added benefit is a nice grassy backyard to enjoy.
The biggest drawback is that, compared to many other options, sod is rather pricy. It can cost hundreds to sod even a modest backyard. It also isn’t permanent, as the grass can die or fail to suck up as much water as you wanted.
11. Overseed Grass
If you want to use grass but don’t want to pay for sod, consider overseeding with grass. As the name suggests, this is simply spreading much more grass seed than you need to. The extra seeds will suck up the water in an attempt to germinate and grow.
This is especially useful in uneven yards. Puddles of standing water might form much easier if there are divots. Overspreading grass seed in those divots will siphon out the water.
12. Cover With Sand
If all else fails, you can always just cover up soil and dirt with sand. A sand ground cover can hide mud and provide a good foundation for other backyard decorations.
One great option as a ground cover is a zen garden. Covering an area with sand and then installing decorative rocks can make a great zen garden. It also provides a nice area for peace and relaxation. A zen garden can double as a ground cover and a beautiful lawn aesthetic at the same time.
How Do You Fix a Muddy Yard?
Fixing a muddy yard varies case by case. A simple mud pit usually is tackled with quick one-time fixes such as kitty litter or mulch. Kitty litter is easy to clean due to clumping and is relatively inexpensive. It gets the water gone fast, and many homes already have some around! Larger, consistently muddy backyard difficulties might need better drainage to be fixed.
If you don’t want to keep up with yard maintenance but don’t like concrete, consider synthetic grass. Installing artificial grass can fight off pests and give a lovely yard at the same time. These yards also tend to last much longer than organic installations and require fewer resources like water or insecticides. It’s cheaper overall and lowers maintenance immensely.
The best way to get rid of mud is to fix the cause. Gardens can siphon out extra rain from a muddy environment or an overly-rainy climate. Better drainage and less dirt can also remove mud at the source.
Whatever causes your muddy backyard, you’re sure to find the fix with one of these twelve methods. If you have further questions or concerns, feel free to contact us or browse our site for more information.