A NATURE Lab workshop with Collard City Growers gardener and coordinator Christian Grigoraskos
As environmental stewards in our community, water security is at the forefront of our consciousness. We are constantly looking for ways to preserve and respect water as a precious resource (BECAUSE IT IS!). Utilizing rainwater barrels and closed-loop aquaponic systems are a couple ways that we plan on managing our water supply in the garden, but there are techniques for building efficient irrigation systems directly into the landscape.
Join us to learn how to build the most open-source, democratic, and FREE irrigation system out there: SWALE & BERMS.
The resulting garden beds will become our community cooking greens patch: collards, kale, and chard -- here we come! Participants of this workshop will leave with plans for building their own A-frame level and muscle memory to dig swales and berms in their own backyards.
A "swale" is a level trench dug on the contour line that acts as a bowl of water for a thirsty landscape. A "berm" is a mound, or garden bed, on the downhill side of the swale that prevents collecting water from escaping. Together, the swale and berm are a perfect duo that function to stop, sink, and spread rainwater. This system is, as one article puts it, "as old as the hills," and is an incredibly simple, multi-purpose solution for hydrating surrounding plantings, mitigating stormwater run-off, reducing erosion, and replenishing and filtering water as it percolates back down to the water table.