Pond Drainage Project

April 28th, 2008

    The latest project involves a great big rock pile… 15 tons of it.  We have two drainages into the pond that come off the watershed of 25-30 acres.  Our neighbors property drains into these key areas from hayfields, and sometimes the amount of rain is so great that the water overflows the driveway.  Over the years the water has eroded grass areas leading into the drainage area, and near the pipes that drain into the pond.  So what happens?  The force of the water washes mud down the drainage, and deposits muddy silt into the pond.   Over the years the pond can become shallower and more choked with vegetation.  It’s going to do that anyway to some degree, but erosion is also detrimental to the stability of the landscape.

Rock pile for pond drainage

So this pile of rocks is going to stabilize the drainages, and hopefully keep the mud from flowing in the pond.  As I started the other day, I had the rocks dumped by a giant truck in one of the few level places near the driveway.  It was supposed to be 4-6 inch rocks… but as you can see there’s some big ones in there!    

Here’s a picture of the drainage pipe after digging it out of mud and leaves.  I was thankful it was not totally choked with debris so I could rebuild the rocks around the pipe.  Fortunately the previous owners had put in a small grate and some rocks to block the opening.  It was buried under 2 feet of leaves and mud, acting as a sort of sponge, but it still kept the water draining slowly.  After cleaning out the area and replacing key rocks, I then poured about 4 bags worth of cement in and around the pipe to strengthen the borders.

Lower drainage pipe into pond

Here’s a “before” picture of the lower drainage area.  The hole and pipe from the picture above is just below the wheel barrow in this picture.  If you can imagine it, this entire area fills with water during heavy rainstorms, and even overflows the driveway at times.  It’s crazy to watch, but that’s why I want to ensure it remains open to flowing water.   Of course the yellow lab enjoyed hanging out while I began dumping rocks around the sides.

Lower pond drainage pipe

The drainage pipe runs under the driveway and down to the pond.  Keeping clean water flowing is the goal! 

Drainage into pond from upper slopes

After a few hours the rock drainage was taking shape.  The larger rocks allowed building a barrier around the drain area to slow the water flow.

Starting to place rocks at the drainage

After seven tractor-loads of rocks, I was worn out but pleased that it was taking shape. At the end of day one the drainage was ready, and after rain last night it seemed to be just fine.  A bigger tractor would help, and a few more hands! But it’s kind of rewarding to do.  It’s not finished yet, but hopefully the new drainage areas will last for some time, and help keep the pond in good shape.

 Lower drainage rocks at end of day 1

After this one it’s time to begin on the upper drainage area by the rock pile.

2 Responses to “Pond Drainage Project”

  1. It seems like fighting water whether it be inland or on the coast is a never ending battle. Growing up on a farm, I was forever doing things to channel and route water so that it was less destructive.

  2. Sometimes I wish I could plug in and download the experience of someone like you! I didn’t grow up on a farm, but thankfully I’ve always enjoyed being outside tinkering with things and like to read. Lots of lessons, mistakes and small victories along the way… :)

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