Erosion can cause quite the mess for any business or homeowner. But what is erosion exactly? Erosion is the process of soil displacement caused by elements such as wind, rain (water), or even normal human activity such kids digging holes in the lawn. This happens most commonly on slopes and places where water or wind can easily move exposed soil downward and away from where it was originally. It is a mess and it can be a mess to try to fix. So let’s dive into some of the most common causes of erosion around your lawn or landscape and how to address those causes.
Insufficient Ground Cover
One of the most common causes of erosion is simply not having great ground cover on your lawn. When your lawn doesn’t have sufficient grass or other ground covering vegetation, the soil becomes exposed to the elements, making it more susceptible to erosion. Plant roots hold the soil together, and without root systems binding that soil together, rainwater or wind can easily come in and displace that top layer, causing erosion.
Common fixes: plant erosion resistant grasses such as Tall Fescue, Bermuda or others around your lawn. Also planting great ground covering plants such as Creeping Myrtle, Creeping Phlox, or Forsythia.
The natural build and shape of your property plays a significant role in whether or not you’ll experience erosion. And one thing we have around the Ozarks of Missouri is hills and slopes. Slopes are commonly affected by erosion because of the force of gravity. Gravity and slopes create a “path of least resistance” for exposed soil Once it begins to rain or we get heavy winds. We’ll get rain, and all of that running water will gain momentum as it comes down that slope, collecting soil along the way and washing it downward with it.
Common fixes: Planting erosion resistant ground covering plants or grasses along your slopes (simpler sometimes), or building terraces and retaining walls to keep the soil in (more complex)
Poor Drainage System
Having poor drainage around you home and lawn is another factor contributing to erosion. If you lawn lacks a well-designed drainage system, excess water can accumulate, leading to soil saturation and erosion.
Common Fix: Install appropriate drainage system such as French Drains or downspout extensions, can help redirect water away from vulnerable areas and prevent erosion.
There are other things that could potentially be causing your erosion, but really these are the main culprits. By addressing these main issues, you can effectively preserve your lawn’s integrity and minimize soil displacement. Remember to tailor your erosion prevention strategies based on the specific characteristics of your lawn and seek professional advice if necessary. With proper care, you can your lawn back on track for being healthy, vibrant, and erosion-free. Hope this helps!