GENERAL PROPERTY GUIDELINES
1. CONTROLLING WATER FLOWING INTO PROPERTY
Dig a small ditch with a hoe or shovel fairly close to the upper edge of the property. Build the ditch nearly on the horizontal to ensure slow water movement. Provide for the ditch to drain into a natural watercourse or onto street pavement or to a well vegetated area (Fig. 20).
Fig. 20 EROSION CONTROL
2. CONTROLLING RUNOFF ON SLOPES
Dig the same type of small ditch at the top of each steep slope. Do not allow large amounts of water to concentrate along one route. On soils especially susceptible to erosion, additional protection can be gained by using inexpensive plastic sheeting. These sheets should be overlapped like shingles and securely tied or weighted down so that the majority of water does not reach the soil. Shrubs may be planted through the plastic by cutting a hole just large enough for growth (Fig. 20). Where ditches are used in unstable soil, the ditch should be sowed with perennial grasses. NOTE: Plastic sheeting should not be used as a permanent solution as it retards vegetation establishment.
3. STRENGTHENING THE SOIL TO RESIST EROSION
Straw or wood chips are effective in holding the soil in place. They have the added value of increasing the organic content of the soil. Either material should be worked into the top few inches of the soil. Place a covering of chips 1 inch (or less) as slope and soil conditions indicate (Fig. 20). Nitrogen fertilizer should be added.
Woven burlap can be laid on the slope and tied down with stakes to prevent lifting by wind or water (Fig. 20).Regular planting procedures can be followed before laying the burlap since it will not interfere with establishing growth on the slope. The burlap will decompose eventually, but will remain long enough for vegetation to become well established.