The Start of The Lower Swale

As the area around the Goat House Lower Swalehas flooded I decided to begin putting in what will eventually be the lower swale.  I wanted the swale to link an overflow pond to the Goose pond, so spent some time marking out the line of the swale following the contour of the land.  Once I was happy with the line of the swale I began to dig it out by hand.  I’ve only dug the trench a spades width by a spades depth over around 30 metres.  Eventually I’ll double the width of it once the immediate flow of water has dried up a bit.  It curves naturally around the Goat house and so picks up the flow of water down the land, protecting it from flooding.  It does cut right through the middle of one of our chicken areas who thoroughly enjoyed stuffing the worms that were brought to the surface as I dug.  When it’s completed I’ll plant it up with a mixture of bamboo and other plants suited to our browsing animals.  We’ll have to redesign the pasture area and move the chickens so that none of the animals get direct access to the plants in the swale.  They will however be able to eat any over hanging foliage.

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