Build An Attractive Rain Garden With River Rocks

If your yard has a drainage problem, you can create better drainage and enhance the appearance of your yard too by installing a swale or rain garden and lining it with river rocks and other natural decor. Here's a look at how to go about making one of these decorative enhancements for your yard.

Dig The Depression

Install your rain garden where water naturally accumulates in your yard. Once the garden is complete, the water will drain and eliminate the problem of standing water. If water doesn't collect in your yard, you might want to direct a gutter downspout to a depression you dig in the yard so the rain garden fills with rain as rain drains from your roof.

Either way, you'll want to dig the depression to the size and shape you desire. Think about how the garden needs to be shaped to be seen easily from a window in your home or from your patio, so you can enjoy the view after it rains. Once you know the length, width, and depth of your rain garden, you can order the rocks from a rock supply company and have them delivered in bulk to your home.

Spread River Rocks In The Garden

River rocks are an attractive choice for a rain garden since the rocks are fairly small and smooth. You can add larger and rougher rocks around the top, but river rocks are ideal to spread on the bottom. Since they don't have shape edges, kids can walk on them when playing in the rain or when the garden dries out. Plus, having rocks on the floor of the garden helps stop soil erosion and improves drainage.

Before spreading the rocks around, put down landscaping fabric so you don't have to deal with weeds and grass growing up through the rocks. Then you can spread the rocks out in the garden to the depth you desire.

Use River Rocks In Other Landscaping Projects 

You may find river rocks to be so attractive that you want to use them in other yard projects. You could put matching rocks around your foundation plants to act as mulch and to help with drainage. You could even place a border of river rocks along a fence to eliminate the need to trim weeds and to keep dirt from splashing on the fence.

When you use river rocks on flat ground rather than to fill a depression, be sure to use edging to hold the rocks in place so they don't become hazards when you mow the lawn.

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