More Work on my Swales

Hi all

I was going to do a post on bamboo, but I’ve been having fun working on one of my swales, and as I took some pictures, I thought that I’d share them with you.

The swale that links to my pond wasn’t functioning properly, in that water was overflowing from the pond, and not feeding back into the swale itself. The idea is that the swale slopes very slightly into the centre, so that water from the swale, fills up the pond first. Once the pond gets close to full, the water should start to backfill along the swale, eventually spilling out at a place of my choosing. Well that wasn’t happening for two reasons. The swales were not quite deep enough, and the front (downslope side) of the pond was too low. So to rectify it, I had to deepen the swales, and build up the front edge of the pond, at the place where it was overflowing.

Overflow from South

Here is a picture of the pond overflowing into a silt trap.

Overflow from the North

Another taken from the other side.

I took a picture of the swale after I had dug most of it out, leaving a small chunk of clay to remove.

Almost joined

The second picture shows the difference in height, with the pond water level higher than the swale.

Different heights

Swale and pond linked

the next shows the two joined together, with the depth  increasing in the swale, and decreasing in the pond.

With the pond depth reduced, I took some of the blue clay, which I had dug from the swale, and built a small clay dam to stop the water overflowing at that point. The following pictures show the dam from both sides, the completed job, and some of the blue clay from the bottom of the swales. The images haven’t gone exactly where I wanted them, but I hope that you get an idea of what it looks like now.

I really like the idea of increasing the amount of water on the smallholding, and am looking forward to seeing what wildlife takes up residence.

Take care


The completed Pond and Swale

Blue clay

dam from South

Dam from North

2 thoughts on “More Work on my Swales

    1. Deano Post author

      Hi Jo

      yes I think you’re right. We’ll have to keep the pond a secret next time they’re here.



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