Nick Kitchener wrote:Come the dry summer months, wouldn't that mean less evaporation due to the reduced surface area
Nick Kitchener wrote:He mentioned that his soil never saturates. If that is the case then is he getting no movement of water through his land?
Michael Cox wrote:Bede - swales are not really pasture systems. They are designed to collect and concentrate moisture in the deeper soil where tree roots can access it in the dry season. From what I have studies Savory style rotational grazing is one of the best way to improve pasture; over time the concentration of soil organic matter increases, so the water retention capacity of the soil increases over huge areas so grass growth improves.
If you want to integrate tree crops in your pastures then swales are very helpful - this might be to provide shade, windbrakes, tree fodder for droughts, fruit and nuts etc...
[caveat - they may be appropriate in pasture systems if you have torrential rainfall and substantial surface run-off, but my experience of pasture land is that surface run off is unusual as the grass slows and helps infiltrate surface water]