Erosion is a significant concern for farmers, especially in regions with heavy rainfall. In this blog, we explore how Australian Concrete Mats are becoming a sustainable solution for erosion control on farms and nurseries. We take a closer look at real-life examples in Northern New South Wales, where it is being proven that concrete mats are a sustainable solution for erosion control.
Farmers Battling Erosion:
Northern New South Wales is known for its copious amounts of rainfall, sometimes reaching up to 2 metres in a month. Such conditions create significant challenges for farmers and nurseries, as erosion can wash away valuable topsoil and infrastructure.
Troy from Australian Concrete Mats has been working closely with these farmers to tackle the erosion issue. Let’s delve into two compelling case studies that illustrate how concrete mats have helped transform these challenging landscapes.
Case Study 1: The Nursery with Erosion Woes
At a commercial nursery near Lismore, erosion was wreaking havoc. The owner struggled to control the water flow down a steep hill, causing damage to his nursery’s infrastructure. The Australian Concrete Mats provided a long lasting solution.
These mats proved strong enough to serve as a base for the nursery’s roadways. The key advantages included their durability and cost-effectiveness when compared to full concrete slabs. By installing the mats and covering them with road base, the nursery owner created a firm and stable roadway that resisted erosion and water damage.
In a worst-case scenario where water flows down from the terraces, the concrete mats held their ground. Even after six months, there was no movement or loss of ground underneath the matting. To ensure maximum stability and effectiveness, the right geotextile underlay was used, preventing water from eroding the mats.
A critical tip to take away is to always overlap the mats on the uphill side to slow down the flow of water. This overlapping method acts as a speed bump for water, reducing its erosive force.
Case Study 2: Macadamia Farming with a Sustainable Approach
Another case study takes us to a Macadamia farm near Lismore. Here, the farm owner had to deal with gullies prone to erosion, making access to various parts of the farm a challenge. The gullies were filling with water and soil runoff after heavy rain, rendering some sections of his farm inaccessible.
In this location, Australian Concrete Mats offered a solution involving biodegradable mats placed under the concrete mats. These mats would help the grass grow through, anchoring the mats further and preventing erosion. The outcome was remarkable. The farm owner could now drive on the concrete mats with a range of machinery over previously impassable terrain.
Moreover, these concrete mats can be used for a wide range of tracks and driveways around the farm. The mats’ durability is unquestionable, as demonstrated on steep sections that endured more than a year of heavy rainfall and remained erosion-free.
The Importance of Proper Preparation:
Regardless of the erosion control method, one common thread runs through both case studies: the importance of proper preparation. Before installing the concrete mats, the land was carefully prepared to flatten and slow water flow to ensure the mats would work effectively. This combination of good practice, quality products, and proper land preparation led to successful erosion control.
Erosion control is a crucial aspect of farming, especially in regions prone to heavy rainfall. The two case studies presented here demonstrate the effectiveness of concrete mats in combating erosion and enhancing farm efficiency. When installed correctly with the right underlay, these mats provide a durable and cost-effective solution.
Proper land preparation, such as shaping the land, using road base with clay, and forming efficient drainage, is vital for the long-term success of any erosion control method. Whether you’re a nursery owner or a farmer, the battle against erosion can be won with the right combination of science, preparation, and quality products.
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