People and pets can bring mud into the house; dogs worse than anything create pathways through mud and on bald spots in the lawn.
Muddy yards are a common issue for home owners where the lawn is patchy or non-existent. The best solutions to cover mud in your backyard include a healthy dose of lawn repair, yet sometimes, the muddy patch may not be in a suitable area for a lawn.
Luckily, you can use this guide and learn how to fix a muddy yard. By the end, you’ll have the answer to a temporary fix for muddy yard or a solution that can transform your yard into something spectacular. (Find a Cheap Garden Hose)
How Can I Cover Dirt In My Yard Cheap?
One good thing is when you need extensive ground covering to deal with a mud issue in your yard; it doesn’t need to cost the earth and can make for a great DIY job over a weekend or two. Here are some things you can do for how to fix a muddy backyard dog trail around your house.
A lack of lawn might cause problems; therefore, sod is a fantastic yard ground cover if you want your lawn to look as it used to. Remember, a square foot of sod can quickly escalate to a considerable cost if you need to replace a large lawn.
Also, before you lay sod on the ground, you’ll need to prepare it properly, or your drainage problem won’t go away. All you need to do is till it, level it, and damp it for the future roots of your sod and your new lawn.
Plant Alternative Ground Cover
If sod is out of your budget, or the space isn’t suitable for a full lawn, there are other options for getting rid of a muddy mess.
Aside from sod, there are various less expensive and more attractive ground covers to choose from. Creeping thyme, candytuft, Mini Kenilworth ivy, and blue star creeper are a few alternatives.
Alternatively, depending on the location of your mud problem, you can use the space to establish a garden. A grass lawn is lovely, but creeping thyme is even more so. If you enjoy planting, though, use your bare patch of dirt or mud as your canvas! A neighbor may give you free cuttings, although if they can’t, you could grow from seeds for little cost.
If nothing is growing in that area, you may need to improve the soil, especially improve the drainage, or alter the pH if it isn’t ideal.
Soil preparation isn’t difficult, and all it may take is adding compost. When you’ve finished planting, ensure you cover the exposed soil with a weed barrier and mulch to keep weeds at bay. (Learn How to Stop Animals from Digging Holes in Yard)
Cardboard makes a great organic weed barrier, and you can use pine straw as mulch; however, this is only suitable for garden beds. If you have a large area you want to cover, then wood chips make a great yard cover.
If there are any tree removal services, they may donate them for free after carrying out tree removal.
If you want a temporary way to hide dirt or mud in your yard, then a thick layer of wood chips can be a cost-effective solution as they are biodegradable and decay slowly.
Wood chips can be great for pets or outdoor living as certain wood types like pine cedar and cypress help keep fleas, ticks, and gnats under control in your yard.
Wood chips convert dead areas of dirt into rich absorbent soil that offers great drainage. You can also find they act as a great durable mulch and help retain moisture, stop weed growth, and when used around plants, they insulate the soil around plant roots. (Find Wood Chipper Rental)
Wood chips make a wonderful way to cover your yard, yet they will not last forever. An alternative way to cover your yard can be a good layer of gravel. However, you need to install the gravel in the right way.
Do it correctly, and you’ll never need to replace it. Gravel can be added to beautify your yard, such as pathways or a large area full of planters.
Gravel doesn’t offer any nourishment to your garden, although this has an upside as bugs and fungi can’t live off it. However, it has benefits such as protecting plants from severe temperatures by insulating the soil, and it is effective at stopping soil erosion and helps improve drainage.
- Prepare your area first, so gravel is more labor-intensive, to begin with when you want to cover dirt or mud patches. Doing it wrong or skipping the preparation and erosion can thin your gravel, so weeds grow through.
- You will need a retaining wall to keep your gravel in position, and the uncomplicated way is to add lengths of lumber across the top of the ground. Pre-treated timber would be best, so it doesn’t decay.
- Inside this area, lay down the weed barrier and fix it in position.
- Fill with a layer of gravel a few inches thick.
Build A Path
If a section of your lawn is already bare, it’s the ideal place for a new pathway. It can be a walking path or only for show.
Walking paths conceal bare spots and stop new ones from appearing. You’ll find foot traffic is a major source of bare muddy areas on the lawn or yard. You’ll be able to walk without creating messy areas when you make a path through it.
There are many options for designing a walking path. Concrete, stepping stones, concrete pavers, mulch, gravel, or whatever else you may think of could create a path.
If you use pavers or concrete tiles, you’ll need to add a layer of sand underneath so you can level them. A path also makes it safer to walk after rain as there is more grip.
Once done, pour sand between the cracks, and it helps stop weeds poking up. Sand also helps with drainage between the concrete pavers around your house.
Build a Deck
As with gravel, you will find this is laid under trees that take longer to dry because of the shade. A deck can be another alternative in your yard to hide a muddy area.
You can install a budget system or have a deck with a roof for a great outdoor living area. Add in string lights for illumination, and you are all set to enjoy the fresh air in your backyard and be dry underfoot. (Read Pressure Washing a Deck The right Way
How Do You Dry Out a Muddy Yard?
When you want to find out what to put on a muddy yard, all the above can help, as can these final solutions to improve your garden and your water issue.
Fix Your Drainage System
Although obvious, poor drainage is a primary cause of a muddy yard in most cases. Check how much water comes down your downspout and where it goes next time it rains.
Water will need to drain into a separate drainage pipe, or your entire yard can remain muddy. If your yard gets muddy, remove any plants from the drainage area, and check there is no run-off onto your yard. You can regrade your lawn, but there are other options.
Install a French drain, which is a trench filled with gravel or rocks. There is also a pipe full of holes that redirects water from the ground in a certain area. You can fit these and move the water from muddy areas where the drainage is vastly improved.
Adding these underground means, you can bury them under grass and have a natural look around your garden rather than gravel-filled trenches as your backyard drainage system solution.
If you can’t locate lime to do the same thing, then a quick way to dry up the garden is kitty litter. Kitty litter is designed to clump and dry up the water.
However, because kitty litter isn’t cheap, it can be a costly way to fix your backyard mud problem. It can also be a labor-intensive solution as it isn’t just adding the covering, and it will need removing.
To get rid of excessive standing water, kitty litter needs leaving in your yard for a day or two, so it absorbs all the moisture. If this method gets too wet, you’ll need to add more, so you can see why this method is expensive.
After a while, you’ll have to clear the top surface of the yard and let it air dry. Most owners scoop up the kitty litter from their yard using a shovel once it has all clumped.
Once you have removed the kitty litter, you can plant grass or lay sod over the soil.
If you need a quick method to fix your rain problem, one covering can help. The least expensive way to cover a muddy yard is using straw. Straw can be easy to find and amazingly easy to use around your garden. (Read Straw Bale Garden Instructions)
Next, all you have to do is break open the bales and spread the straw across your yard. Ideally, you’d use straw on a is incredibly popular for larger yards.
Make sure you cover a lot as possible and leave no gaps. The drying straw soaks up water in your yard. However, this idea is effective yet not the best solution as straw is incredibly flimsy and can fly from your garden in high winds.
Also, soil dries slow and can start to decay; thus, you need to remove it and add it to your compost to fix the area where water used to be.