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How to take a dry stream and make it flow

 
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I am in the process of purchasing land for a homestead that has a dry stream bed on it.  I attached a picture from the topo map for reference.  The pond at the top is not on the property.  IS there anyway to make this stream flow?  Also, not sure how this affects it, but a local told me the water table is at 17 feet.  Thanks for the help!
gully-snip.PNG
[Thumbnail for gully-snip.PNG]
 
pollinator
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There is no where near enough information for anyone to give you meaningful advice here.

You would need to know at least some detail about the geology, rainfall patterns, etc...

Some of the standard advice for slowing and sinking rainwater may help - swales on contour, check dams in the creek bed etc... but no one can know ahead of time if it will work. At the least it will likely prolong flow after seasonal rainfall events.
 
pioneer
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Hello John and welcome to permies. You have certainly came to the right place. As Mike stated there will be a ton more information required. As a relatively new member myself I don't  feel qualified to answer much. However hydrology would be a the top of the list in my key areas of interest. One thing that stands out in my mind is you don't want to make any significant damming changes that would be above the bottom of your neighbor's pond. This might destabilize his damn structure,  which  would be bad for all. Can you estimate the water retained by hos catchment?  The water table will most likely rise once you get the soil to accept moisture. What is the slope of the edges of the draw? This is  vital to know as it affects  what structures can be utilized.  Perhaps some plant species  id and  photos so one might know what native or invasive species are available  for material. Is the area rocky? Granite or sedimentary bed rock? Is the gulley washed down to bedrock?
 
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In Texas, we have a lot of places like that.  I have several on my property.  I call them "wet weather creeks" because they become rivers when it rains though before the rain they were dry.

I suspect that your dry stream bed is very similar to mine. Do you think it was a river or stream at one time that went underground?
 
John Ritchie
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I don't know that it was.  The previous owner (whose had the land in his family for 80 years) said he doesn't know of it ever running.  
 
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Around here indigenous people say that you have to plant trees to call the water back. I have seen this work. On my property, I've been blessed with more and slower water when it does rain, and it stays greener the more trees I plant. In order to grow the trees successfully you also have to rebuild the soil, which restores the fungi and life networks. It's a lot of work, but a fairly simple process

Generally, it means lots of organic matter, compost tea, etc, and appropriately chosen trees. You may have to irrigate them or grow them in place from seed.

It's a really rewarding process though! It's definitely worth seeing through!
 
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