control soil erosion

Soil erosion might not be on everyone’s mind right now, but it can cause catastrophic disasters if we can’t find a way to control it. Soil erosion occurs when rainwater washes soil downwards from steep slopes of land. It can pollute waterways and devastate agricultural areas, not to mention landslides and potentially cause worse casualties.

Thankfully, there are things you can do today if you want to do your part for the environment:

 

  1. Placing Mulch On Soil

 

soil mulch

If something can be said about mulching, it’s a method that kills two birds with one stone. Not only is it a proven way of stopping soil erosion, but it’s also an effective gardening technique.

Mulching is the application of a mixture of organic materials on surrounding plants or bare soil. Mulch’s thick composition makes it a perfect barrier that protects against harsh sunlight and wind. And that thick covering also cushions raindrops, reducing their impact on the ground and the wind from blowing away particles.

When mulch is placed in the soil, it can also help lessen the impact of the elements by 30%. If you have a huge area of land to cover, consider it a worthy investment of your time as it’ll help save topsoil. Suppose you’d like to know more about organic gardening, head to this reliable organic recycling source.

Related:
Why Mulching is a Critical Part of Environmentally-Responsible Gardening

 

  1. Growing Vegetation

Even if you’re planting simple bushes or crops that bear produce, you’re already preventing soil erosion because plants serve as soil binders. Growing roots grab onto soil particles for support, and the ground becomes compact the more plants can grow on the land. You can plant anything, but small trees, creepers, and wildflowers are among the choice plants to help prevent soil erosion.

Some places where erosion is likely to happen are hillsides and land along streams and rivers. The plants you’re growing along those areas will prevent soil erosion and act as a barrier from the elements. At the same time, planting combats deforestation, which also contributes to soil erosion.

Related:
Gardening Tips for Beginners

 

  1. Soil Nailing

Soil nailing might not be a familiar process to most people, but it’s one of the proven ways of soil erosion prevention. It’s a technique for ground stabilization designed for slopes that are natural or excavated. The surface is drilled deep to make way for steel bars. The application includes grouting to prevent them from moving. Mesh material then covers the face of the sloping land. It’s attached to the ends of the bars, creating a look similar to a wall.

Among the types of soils that the process of soil nailing will work on are sandy clays, gravels, and sand. Soils that are highly corrosive, soft fine-grained, and loose granular soils are unsuitable for this method. Soil nailing can be environment-friendly and cost-efficient when used with coir-based products explicitly made for erosion. They’re made from biodegradable materials that are both dependable in erosion control.

Related:
Save The Peat Moss! Switch To Coconut Coir

 

  1. Construct Terraces

control soil erosion with terraces

Embankments and slopes are some of the most susceptible to erosions. They’re difficult to plant on due to the lack of support as they’re too steep. In this case, terrace farming would be a solution practiced by different cultures to plant crops effectively. Building terraces out of the steep slopes allows the plants to get more grip on the land they must live on. Terraces look like steps, and seeds are planted in each step, eventually turning into crops.

There are various ways and materials available to build terraces. From natural wood and reliable concrete, there are also modern solutions that farmers can use. These solutions allow farmers to use methods integrated with the help of organic materials. Not only do these terraces can support farming, but anything can be planted here, from herbs, ornamental plants, and grass.

Related:
Effective Herb Gardening Made Easy

 

  1. Avoiding Overgrazing Of Animals

If you’re taking care of farm animals, it’s important not to let them graze in the area often because it prevents new grass or any vegetation from flourishing. Without any plant material, erosion begins to take hold of the area because the soil’s surface is exposed, and the elements can easily take the topsoil away.

Practice sustainable grazing and other animal management processes that can support erosion control. When the animals need to graze, take them to other areas with abundant plants or bushes. Rotate them in different locations to allow forage quality to improve where they’ve been.

Related:
The Beginner's Guide to Homesteading

 

  1. Create Windbreakers

It’s typical to see open farmlands devoid of trees and any other vegetation in the fields, but planting trees and bushes is also a way of controlling erosion. They act as windbreakers that minimize the topsoil from being blown away. At the same time, the crops are protected, and it sustains their good health by allowing moisture to stay.

If your farm is also along the riverbanks where you also practice fish farming, natural windbreakers protect them by slowing the impact of the wind and preventing soil from rolling into the water. Creating windbreakers will take over some of the farmland areas, but the return on investment is worth it as they’ll help reduce the progression of soil erosion.

Related:
Planting Fruit Trees

 

Conclusion

Soil erosion is likely to occur when humans also use the land to farm crops and raise animals. But there are many ways that soil erosion can be prevented, and some of them are doable by being aware of the practices and by simply planting and growing more plants and trees. It also starts with spreading awareness to help prevent catastrophic events from soil erosion.

Luke is a passionate environmental advocate based in upstate New York. When he's not sharing tips on sustainability and wellness, you can find him hiking with his dog, Max.

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