I should have done a soil test before I started to plant anything or doing my design. We have a pretty newly built house and I noticed last year that we had standing water on the back left side (where I planted), but didn't think to much of it until this winter after all the melting snow then the 2 full days of rain. All my 60 plants were under standing water for a few days.
Since that day, I have started digging a hole for a dry river bed (25' x 3'). Right now it's only dug at about 4" deep, but will go deeper. The next rainfall, the ground still had standing water, but not as much as the first rain. Mainly because the dry river bed filled up until it couldn't hold anymore. 2 days later the dry river bed still had water to the top, so I am using hoses to suck the water out.
I'm hoping the riverbed will be the solution to my problem as I'm looking for the cheapest/quickest fix possible.
I was thinking of digging the river bed 2 feet deep, then taking sand/organic matter and mixing it with the native soil/clay in the bottom to hopefully break it up so it will drain faster before I add the rocks. I just didn't want to dig that deep, add the sand/organic material and still couldn't get it to drain. Then I would have 2 feet of standing water each hard rain. If I did this, after the rain passed through the mixed bottom layer, wouldn't it just hit more clay soil and fill back up or would the organic matter keep working it's way down?
I thought about putting a french drain from my riverbed to the back of the property, but that would be 120' and the ground is flat, if not a little up hill. I plan to do this eventually, but the cost/time right now would be a huge factor as I have already bitten off more than I can chew lol.