REHABILITATION AND STABILIZATION SOLUTIONS
Soil Sample Analysis | Erosion Control | Rehabilitation | Seed Protection | Vetiver
Soil Sample Analysis Soil sample analysis is a valuable part of successful environmental rehabilitation and provides the following important information:
- Soil quality – nutrient deficiencies and surpluses
- Soil structure
- Soil texture
- Soil pH
- Water retention properties
Optimum nutrient uptake is critical to plant growth and the test results allow us to select the appropriate fertilizer and other measures needed to correct deficiencies so optimizing the uptake of fertilizer nutrients by the new vegetation.
Soil erosion occurs both naturally (wind, water) and/or unnaturally (tillage, construction, mining) and affects all landforms. Any form of soil erosion involves three distinct actions –
- Soil detachment
- Soil movement
- Soil deposition
Fertile topsoil which is high in organic matter and soil life is then relocated. This loss in topsoil creates conditions that accelerate soil degradation causing soil compaction, low organic matter, loss of soil structure, poor internal drainage, salinisation and soil acidity.
Soil detachment after rain storm
Soil movement due to erosion
Topsoil eroded and deposited elsewhere
It is important to understand that a soil preparation and rehabilitation plan should align with an erosion control plan to ensure the effective restoration of disturbed areas.
Weed control is a vital part of the soil preparation and rehabilitation plan especially during the initial stages of rehabilitation. Controlling weeds prevents them from smothering seedlings/sods and stealing valuable nutrients from them.
The importance of rehabilitation and re-vegetation:
- Minimise erosion potential by stabilising disturbed areas and thus protecting the topsoil
- Improve the visual impact of disturbed areas
- Ensure that disturbed areas are safe to use
- Re-vegetation of suitable local plant species to maintain the natural biodiversity in disturbed areas
- Restore and/or protect ecosystems
Rehabilitation of slope - before
Rehabilitation of slope - after
Road verge rehabilitation - VETIVER
Seed Protection Rehabilitation on slopes require protection from surface erosion while vegetation establishes and calls for immediate soil stabilisation. This is achieved by using a flexible erosion blanket woven from 100% jute comprising a 65% open mesh structure which protects the bare soil from natural elements, conserves the ground moisture and provides erosion control where support and sustained vegetation is required.
- Retains up to five times its own weight in moisture
- Mitigates temperature extremes
- Protects seedlings from direct sun rays
- Reduces desiccation
- Offers some protection against birds and animals
- Allows light and air through its open structure
- Prevents wind and water erosion around new growth roots
Vetiver grass is a practical, water wise solution for erosion control. This perennial grass forms clumps growing up to 1.5 metres high with a similar width. This unique grass has roots that grow deep, downward roots instead of forming horizontal, mat-like root systems like most grasses. They propagate themselves by small, non-invasive offsets making the grass easy to control.
Advantages and uses:
- Erosion control and soil stabilisation for embankments, canals, terraces, steep slopes
- Conserves water and maintains soil moisture
- Absorbs nutrients and minerals for growth as well as toxic substances in chemical fertilisers and pesticides
- Decomposes as organic material thus improving the soil and making it more friable
“Every blade of grass has it’s Angel that bends over it and whispers, grow, grow.”- Talmud.