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Semi-Arid Tropics : Wait for 1st rain to dig the swale ?

 
Posts: 16
Location: Bamako, Mali
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Dear all,

Is it recommended to wait for the first moonsoon rain before digging your swales ?

I am in Mali, in the Sahel region, and trying to dig the swale before the raining season starts will be quite energy/time consuming.
Is it a bad strategy to wait for the drops of rain to drop before you start digging your swale ?

Thanks a lot

Eli
 
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Where I live the soil gets super hard during the dry season also, so I wait to dig until it has rained enough to soften the soil so I can get my pick and shovel into it.

 
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If it's a rocky area, you could potentially move the first layer of rocks away from where you're digging(lining them up where the bottom of the swale hillock will be may be a cool addition) - that way the first rain is able to penetrate further into the dirt to soften it for your digging.
 
Eli Sinayoko
Posts: 16
Location: Bamako, Mali
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Thanks for the answers.

Actually here the soil is not that hard, but it  would still require a lot of time to dig it before the first rains.

So I'll probably wait for the first rains to come and then dig my swales. I just wanted to check if there was no counter indications.

 
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