Identifying the need for drainage


Evidence of poor drainage may be surface ponding or saturated topsoils.

First actions are to examine the soil to determine if they are naturally freely or slowly draining or have damaged structure.

Compacted soil can restrict surface water from reaching drainage systems.  Remove any compacted layers before considering drainage maintenance.

Soil compact occurs when soil particles are compressed, reduced space between them restricts the movement of air and water through the soil.

Examine soil at several points in the field to a depth of:

  • Arable land – at least 600mm
  • Grassland – at least 500mm

To find out more have a look at the ADDB Field Drainage Guide which looks at the principles, installation and maintenance issues.

land drainage snippet 3



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