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This client came to us to help solve a large soil erosion and flooding problem as they were receiving over 10,000,000 gallons of stormwater from the neighboring property annually. San Isidro Permaculture’s approach was to spread the water out over 5 acres to mitigate a major drainage channel causing severe erosion and turn the stormwater into an asset. The system begins with a silt pond at the top of the property. This silt pond then releases water into two main swales (infiltration areas on contour) that split the water between the two halves of the rectangular property. These swales fill and then spill into secondary and tertiary catchment areas that passively irrigate a vineyard, an orchard, a food forest, a home garden and a native meadow. Since it’s installation in the summer of 2013 this system has both mitigated the erosion on the property, helped recharge the local aquifer with millions of gallons of water as well as dramatically improved the overall health of the planting areas supported by this simple design.

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