Water Ponding/Management

FranksFarm at aol.com FranksFarm at aol.com
Mon Dec 17 07:40:13 EST 2001

Good day :)

Thanks John for the clarification on the key lines. Still a bit hard for this 
lame brained ex city fellow to understand clearly. I'd probably grasp it 
quickly if someone showed me those points.

Some comments:

<<They are concentrating water from the
hills/ridges to the hollows, is that correct?>> Yes, that appears to be the 
case. Though in some instances they seem to meander along the bases of the 
hills as they wind their way down to the creeks or bottoms. Those that do not 
directly drain to the creeks can create boggy wet areas that can remain so 
for weeks. That's the water I'm trying to direct where it will do the most 

Erosion seems limited to well defined drain areas that have been gouged out. 
Where they join up depth and width can approach 10' or more. Run off has been 
exacerbated by droughty condition which often make the clay based soil rock 
hard ...probably less so in forests due to litter, etc., but still a problem.

I'd like to build some ponds on the sides of those hills but am not sure how 
to find best places. I was simply going to find a deep drain near a shelf 
that could be dammed up. 

Heavy clay soils down here hold water very well. And often such soils are not 
very deep. Only a few inches of top soil in many areas. Bottoms oth are 
fairly deep, and for the most part well drained. Ponding in bottoms arises 
due to changes /locations of grades. Changes in elevation are generally only 
a foot or two over relatively short distances...some more gradual than others.

Lower pastures as suggested were probably just bull dozed and seeded without 
much leveling so there are numerous fairly gentle undulations that lead to 
ponding. Additionally there are numerous wet weather springs below the 

So far I haven't found any that bubble out in drier times. Down here many 
folks say you need to dig out springs. Any guideposts/clues/plant indicators 
to finding fruitful locations?

Look forward to the list's comments. Hopefully some of the permculture, and 
water management gurus like Darren can shed some light on this situation 
which may be fairly common.

Thanks to all. Happy Holidays:)   Frank


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