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Water-Waste Management Planting

Figure 11: Water-Waste Management Planting — Sketch of a water-waste management planting and how it functions.


A block planting of closely spaced trees and/or shrubs placed downslope from agricultural water or waste sources. (For plantings immediately adjacent to streams or water courses see Riparian Forest Buffer.) The dimension of the planting on its downhill axis and distance between individual plants insures the trapping of sediment or harmful chemicals from uphill land uses.

Some Primary FOTGPractices for this System:

  • Tree/Shrub Establishment (612)
  • Access Control (472)
  • Prescribed Grazing (528A)
  • Pasture and Hay Planting (512)
  • Fencing (382)
  • Waste Utilization (633)
  • Irrigation System (441), Irrigation Water Management (449)

Primary Purposes:

  • To use excess water by plant uptake, and/or intercept and utilize or sequester waste and other pollutants transported from uphill sources to and through a down-gradient block planting.

Key Design Elements:

  • Blocks are planted downhill from the source of water and/or waste. They must be sufficiently large (generally greater than 100 feet on its downhill axis) to achieve primary purposes and configured to fit the use of equipment and materials on adjacent fields. Application of water and/or waste shall not exceed the capability of the block planting to utilize such water/waste on a sustained basis. (For plantings less than 100 feet wide, see Filter Strips in the Alley Cropping System.)

Tree/Shrub Species Requirements:

  • Adapted to the soil and climate of the planting site.
  • Tolerant of excess water, sediment deposition and waste-laden runoff.
  • Aggressive root and crown spread to occupy the site quickly.
  • Resistance to pests, herbicides and site pollutants.