Using swales to manage rain/ground water runoff

Asked July 3, 2013, 10:50 PM EDT

I recently read some articles on the Penn State Extension website that described the use of swales to manage ground water run-off. The yard around my home slopes down towards the side and back of my home and when it rains, the ground runoff tends to pool in back of the house. From what I've read, it appears that installing a couple of swales may help to control the flow of ground water when it rains, redirecting the flow away from the house and improving drainage. Is there a contractor/landscape specialist in the area (Danville, Montour County) that has experience installing swales?

Montour County Pennsylvania

3 Responses

Penn State does not endorse nor recommend specific private contractors. However, you might want to contact your Montour county planning commission which will be in a better position to provide a recommendation. Here is their web site

I understand that Penn State does not endorse contractors. However, I would still like to know if my understanding of swales and they're application is accurate. That is, will the proper installation of a swale (or swales) help to alleviate marshy areas in my yard and improve groundwater management?

The swales should substantially alleviate the ponding you referenced if properly constructed. You might want to provide consideration to neighboring properties if the swale drainage creates other problems further down the local topography. Good luck with your efforts.