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Easy drainage solution for water run off

If your garden has drainage problems, here's an easy way to allow for water run off and add a decorative touch at the same time by adding a pebble drainage bed.

Drainage problems, or areas in a garden where water pools, can cause extensive damage to buildings. Raised water levels not only increase the risk of rising damp in brickwork, excessive moisture can also damage the brickwork, paint finishes and result in crumbling mortar and plaster.

If there are areas in the garden, particularly those close to buildings, where water does not run off quickly, here's an easy and very decorative way to allow for water run off that uses pebbles and pea gravel.


Pebbles, large

Pea gravel

Garden spade







1. Before you start, determine the lay of the land. Poor drainage and pooling water needs to be directed away from any buildings, so you need to look at how you can achieve this. The ground where the pebble bed will be located needs to be dug out at a slight angle to ensure that water is directed away from foundations. You will dig a 'V' shape from the walls and to the lowest point in your garden. This is a lot of work and I would advise hiring day labour if your garden requires extensive digging.

2. Once the area is dug out, the centre of the 'V' shape can be filled with large pebbles or stones. This is where the water will flow and smaller pebbles will be washed away, so try and find the largest pebbles or stones that you can. Most garden centres or your local Builders store have a selection of pebbles that you can choose from.

3. The outer edges of the pebble bed are covered with pea gravel, or small gravel chips. Here is where you can add a bit of contrast by using white-grey pebbles and darker pea gravel. Use a rake to level out the gravel.

Now your pebble bed will allow water run off to move from the garden and away from walls and buildings.