ECM for Cropped Environments - Grassed Waterways

Grassed Waterways:

A grassed waterway is a natural or constructed ditch, usually broad and more shallow than the rest of the field, used to conduct surface water from or through cropland. Grassed waterways enhance water infiltration and trap eroded sediment. They are less costly to implement but require periodic maintenance to work efficiently. Grassed waterways also help in preventing the development of gullies in the fields because the grasses are purposely established in the lowest part of the landscape, where concentrated water flow will likely occur.

A network of grassed waterways.

Contour terraces draining into a grassed waterway.

Thinking Question:

Discuss the advantages and limitations of grassed waterways in controlling erosion.