Earthworks: Swale & Berm

A swale is a dead-level ditch dug on the land’s contour. Swales can mitigate the effects of stormwater runoff by capturing rainwater letting it percolate into the soil and form underground storage reservoirs for plants. The dirt is turned over downslope from the swale to form a berm, which is heavily planted. Swales can be 1 to 3 feet deep and 1 to 4 feet or more across, with a berm downslope roughly the same size, made from the soil from the swale.

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