I built a shed last year on sloped ground, using concrete piers. I didn't get around to adding gutters, and was contemplating not doing it. But, the water seems to be eroding some areas of the soil around the shed (which I recently added mulch over), and leaving a faded line on the top step, as well as a faded line on the fresh mulch.

In the picture below, I am looking to add some flowers/medium sized plants on the right side of the steps. Is there any harm in adding the downspout at the high end of the slope so the water will run out in this area and give more water to the plants? And also, let the water disperse through the soil more at the high end, rather than two spouts pouring out at the low end. I was thinking putting the rear spout at the left side, and the front at the right. Or is it better to direct the water entirely away from the shed and put the down spouts on the left side? Looking for advice and another perspective on this in case I am missing something, or if the water running down from the high end would cause any issue down the line.

I do have a french drain in the center of the yard as well, which helps dissipate any middle standing water.

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  • The picture you just deleted answers a lot of questions. I'd put it back in if I were you.
    – FreeMan
    Jan 15, 2021 at 16:24

2 Answers 2


I would have put downspouts on the low end of the grade. If you have it on the high end will flow across the mulch and wash it away. You could also get a plastic water tank to drain into, possibly even add a hose so you can water your lawn and plants. Also, water may pool under shed if drained from the high end .


If carefully managed, I could see collecting the water in a barrel at the high end of the shed and using it for watering purposes. I'd think you would want to just collect it and dip it out to water the flowers, having some sort of automated system would probably be more complex than what you're after. (If it's not, that's probably fodder for a whole new question.)

Management would include an overflow spout that runs into plumbing that would direct the water in a pipe, under the mulch and out on the low end to let it flow downhill and away without washing out the mulch or the dirt around your footings. Since you have a French drain, you could direct the overflow water into that, as well. If you were to allow the water to just freely overflow the barrel, that wouldn't be a whole lot better than what you've got right now.

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