need advice on ditch project.

top gnome

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b2301 w bh fel grapple back blade
Dec 12, 2021
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Fundy shore nova scotia
I have a fairly deep ditch that runs across the front yard. it is eroding into my driveway (stupid chickens) and I could use some suggestions on how to improve the area. There is a fairly large maple tree that we would like to help and want to keep it alive. the last picture is the flooding, we had that probably, helped erode the ditch. If possible it would be nice to be able to mow up to it without to much wipper snipper work. I have unlimited beach rock. but will consider buying what I need to improve the area.

Design goals

Save driveway
Save maple tree
less weed wacker work
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NCL4701

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This may be a stupid oversimplification but the only problem I heard with the ditch is it’s eroding into something bigger than is desired. If that’s the case and you have access to a sufficient quantity of appropriate sized rock (between fist and beach ball +/-) seems like lining it with rock would be an option to stabilize it.

Downside to rock lining is it will slow down water flow to some degree. You could retain (actually increase) flow rate by lining it with concrete. That’s a rather expensive and arguably unattractive alternative.

If you don’t want to weedeat around the maple, or any other lawn obstacle, consider surrounding it with hard scape such as mulch, small decorative rock, brick chips, etc. to the degree required to accommodate your mower’s turn radius.
 

mcfarmall

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How about some 24" smooth bore culvert pipe and grow grass on top of it? Chickens will destroy everything in their path. Best bet is a permanent chicken run or a chicken tractor so YOU can choose what gets destroyed.
 

Motion

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The pictures only show so much. I'd suggest laying out a grid of the entire area along with elevations, determine where the water is to go. You may need to install properly sized culverts, head walls, catch basins, swales, rip-rap, fill, etc. I strongly recommend looking wholistically as opposed to piece meal. If funding is limited, have a master plan and work from the low point up. Good luck
 

top gnome

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b2301 w bh fel grapple back blade
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Fundy shore nova scotia
thank you for all the responses. a culvert would certainly be the best option as the maple is open root on the windward side so is likely to be wind damaged as we continue to loose the spruce trees in front of it. Is it ok to run a culvert for 100 feet? would something like big o work?

the flooded picture is a rare event 1st time in the 8 years we have been here. The map with elevations is a good idea. The rock is also a possibility and I can get rip rap but I do not know if my B will be able to move it. I used the rip rap on the shore but they brought out a large back hoe and even the smallest rocks were very hard to lift by hand.

Mulching is a good idea it is not so much the maple tree as it is the ditch itself.

eventually there will be another fence after the tractor shed is built, and the chickens will be on the other side out of the yard.
 

Motion

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Running a 100 of culvert doesn't matter however the area above the culvert does, I'd cut in a basin midway, to give that area a place to go to. Rare events will become more of the norm. Pending you long term plans consider pricing a surveyor and a civil engineer (if it's a dollar you'd do it, if it's a million then you wouldn't, with knowledge comes options) if you really want dot the I's and cross the T's and do it right the first time.
 
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top gnome

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b2301 w bh fel grapple back blade
Dec 12, 2021
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Fundy shore nova scotia
Running a 100 of culvert doesn't matter however the area above the culvert does, I'd cut in a basin midway, to give that area a place to go to. Rare events will become more of the norm. Pending you long term plans consider pricing a surveyor and a civil engineer (if it's a dollar you'd do it, if it's a million then you wouldn't, with knowledge comes options) if you really want dot the I's and cross the T's and do it right the first time.
From the house to the ditch is only about 20 feet. not a lot of room to change what is there. there is a mountain (very small mountain) behind the house for about 2.5 miles to the peak so all of that water has to move to the bay. is there a drain tile like a big O style that would allow water in along where the current ditch is.
 

lynnmor

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Why is the driveway the drainage system to the mountain behind you? Can you divert much of the water to another channel?
 

top gnome

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Why is the driveway the drainage system to the mountain behind you? Can you divert much of the water to another channel?
there is a stream that captures most of the water and there are drainage ditches at the road we really do not have a big issue with water drainage other than the earlier storm this year and there were some up stream culvets that were blocked. once I cleared them the water was at a much lower level. The issue I am concerned about is erosion of the driveway and makeing sure the maple tree does not blow over in a future hurricane.
 

mikester

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I am assuming you have frost/ice/snow issues requiring open drainage.

Clean out and grade the ditch to make it smooth. Avoid choke points and drops that make water speed up. Lay down appropriate geotextile fabric. Cover fabric with clear stone 1"-4" mixed size to hold down the fabric and interlock the stones so they don't get washed away by moving water.

Think modified french drain and swale combination.

IMHO that maple is too close to your driveway, I'd be taking it out.
 

top gnome

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b2301 w bh fel grapple back blade
Dec 12, 2021
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Fundy shore nova scotia
I am assuming you have frost/ice/snow issues requiring open drainage.

Clean out and grade the ditch to make it smooth. Avoid choke points and drops that make water speed up. Lay down appropriate geotextile fabric. Cover fabric with clear stone 1"-4" mixed size to hold down the fabric and interlock the stones so they don't get washed away by moving water.

Think modified french drain and swale combination.

IMHO that maple is too close to your driveway, I'd be taking it out.
thank you, We do have snow frost and even quite deep freeze 4' deep requirement for footings - Does that rule out a long culvert? We have a flat sided 4 inch rock that is used on the side of hills and ditches here. I will follow your advice on the ditch. The tree will stay it may be close to the driveway but my wife loves that tree.
 

GreensvilleJay

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If you can (allowed..) make the stream bigger, deeper, wider. Maybe you can redirect the stream away from house and driveway.
Also ,go 'upstream' and check for 'blocking debris' every couple of weeks or after wind storms. A 10 minute walk( take a coffee !) may prevent major damage and HOURS of cleanup work....
 

fried1765

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thank you, We do have snow frost and even quite deep freeze 4' deep requirement for footings - Does that rule out a long culvert? We have a flat sided 4 inch rock that is used on the side of hills and ditches here. I will follow your advice on the ditch. The tree will stay it may be close to the driveway but my wife loves that tree.
I agree with your wife!
Save that big beautiful maple tree, until/unless mother nature uproots it for you.
Do not cover the exposed tree roots with rock or mulch, as that might actually kill the tree!
 
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top gnome

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b2301 w bh fel grapple back blade
Dec 12, 2021
250
74
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Fundy shore nova scotia
If you can (allowed..) make the stream bigger, deeper, wider. Maybe you can redirect the stream away from house and driveway.
Also ,go 'upstream' and check for 'blocking debris' every couple of weeks or after wind storms. A 10 minute walk( take a coffee !) may prevent major damage and HOURS of cleanup work....
yes the flooding was the first time and an up stream culvert was blocked so normally some of the water would have been diverted.
 

top gnome

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b2301 w bh fel grapple back blade
Dec 12, 2021
250
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Fundy shore nova scotia
I agree with your wife!
Save that big beautiful maple tree, until/unless mother nature uproots it for you.
Do not cover the exposed tree roots with rock or mulch, as that might actually kill the tree!
thank you unfortuately we are losing trees at a crazy rate this year just lost another spruce yesterday. We have added some gravel to try to save the spruce trees maybe that was the wrong thing to do?
 

top gnome

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b2301 w bh fel grapple back blade
Dec 12, 2021
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Fundy shore nova scotia
Just wanted to follow up and say thank you for all the help Not a great picture but I thought I at least show the ditch with the 4-8 inch rock in it. The tractor and loader did a surprising
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good job with the heavy rock. I am adding a pic of the storm damage after cleanup moved a few smaller spruce trees with the backhoe.
 

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