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Grassed Waterway

A farm field with a system of grassed waterways which safely conduct water down the slope of the land without eroding the soil

Practice Code: 412
Reporting Unit: Acre (Ac.)

A grassed waterway is a shaped or graded channel that is established with suitable vegetation to convey surface water at a non-erosive velocity using a broad and shallow cross section to a stable outlet.

Purposes and Benefits

  • Grass waterways protect drainage ways from gully erosion
  • Vegetation acts as a filter, trapping chemicals and nutrients in runoff water
  • Vegetation provides cover for small birds and animals

Web graphic: Raindrop and soilPhoto Gallery

Ground Disturbing Potential of Conservation Practices

This is a potential ground disturbing conservation practice. Any project with ground disturbing or potential ground disturbing practices planned may need to be submitted for review by the State Historic Preservation Officer and Tribal Historic Preservation Officers. Please see the Cultural Resources Review Process Flowchart for an outline of this process. View a list of conservation practices used in New York State, and their ground disturbing potential.   

Conservation Practice Documents

Web link image: Field Office Technical GuideDocuments associated with this and other conservation practices are available at the NRCS Field Office Technical Guide Web site.


Related Conservation Practices

This practice is commonly used in a Conservation Management System with practices such as:

Critical Area Planting (342)
Diversion (362)
Lined Waterway or Outlet (468)
Subsurface Drain (606)
Terrace (600)
Underground Outlet (620)

If you want to learn how you can protect natural resources on your farm or forest land, please contact your local NRCS Service Center.


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