Properly landscaping yards in poor draining areas can prevent the need for drainage pipes or gravels. Many shrubs require a large amount of water and will soak up the standing or sitting water that accumulates in yards during routine watering or rainfall.

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A caladium leaf is distinctive in shape, size and color.

Dappled Willow Shrub

A dappled willow, or salix integra, is a shrub that uses and soaks up a large amount of water. The shrub can grow to be four to six feet tall and wide. The small oval shaped leaves begin spring as a bright pink color. As the foliage matures in summer, the leaves change to a cream and then green color. In late fall to early winter, the leaves change to red and start the cycle again as they change to a bright pink again in spring. In mid spring, the shrub blooms with white, cream or pink two inch long, cone-shaped flowers. The shrub is best planted in USDA zones 4a through 9b. The shrub requires full sun and constantly moist soil. It must be watered routinely.

Caladium Shrub

Caladium, or caladium x hortulanum, is a shrub that requires a large amount of water and can soak up water. The caladium shrub usually grows to be one to two feet wide and tall. The shrub is characterized by its large, 8 to 12 inch, arrowhead shaped leaves. The leaves are normally red, green and/or white in color or any mixture of the colors on any one particular leaf. The shrub is best grown in USDA zone 8 through 11. The shrub requires full sun, rich soil and sufficient water.

Clethra Shrub

A clethra shrub, or clethra alnifolia, can be used to soak up water. The shrub can grow to be 6 feet tall and 5 feet wide and grows in an oval shape. The dark green leaves are oval in shape with serrated edges. The leaves change to a golden yellow color in the fall. The flowers bloom in mid to late summer, measuring 4 inches long. The white or light pink blooms are bottlebrush-like and attract butterflies, bees and hummingbirds with their fragrant smell. A clethra shrub is best grown in USDA zones 4 through 9. The shrub is best grown in full sun to full shade conditions and needs moist to wet soil.