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Construction of terraces

 
                                
Posts: 7
Location: Lakeside, CA
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We need to terrace a rather steep embankment on the side of our property (that drops down to the street) so we can get a load of fruit trees growing on that side of the yard! Being that it's on the street it needs to be relatively attractive and obviously not fail and dump a ton of dirt into the road.

We, like many, don't have unlimited funds and resources! So it needs to be cheap! We also have little experience in constructing such a thing but want to get this embankment productive!

Some ideas?:

1. put up a chain-link/wire fence to hold in the dirt and then have some kind of vines/plants growing up the fence. Would this work?

2. We have a possible hook up source on urbanite... but I have no experience constructing walls out of lots of chunks of busted up concrete and somehow making it level.

Any other ideas? The yard at the top of the embankment is relatively level but the street below slopes down so as you go down to the main road the embankment increases in height. I'd say it starts around 5' and ends up at a good 15' or slightly more.
 
pollinator
Posts: 1528
Location: zone 7
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photos?
 
                                
Posts: 7
Location: Lakeside, CA
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Here you are!
116_0258.JPG
[Thumbnail for 116_0258.JPG]
116_0259.JPG
[Thumbnail for 116_0259.JPG]
 
                                
Posts: 20
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http://nikeprogramme.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=113:rice-terrace-construction&catid=82:nike-team-researches&Itemid=99

was posted in another thread on the subject of terracing.

You will need to stablize the slope before it starts raining. Willow trees can put a lot of roots down very fast, by burying the branches. So thats a good solution. Using a variety of plants with roots of varying depth will help.
 
                                
Posts: 7
Location: Lakeside, CA
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Will I have to worry about the Willow branches' roots vs. the fruit trees that I plan on putting in the terraced levels?
 
steward
Posts: 7926
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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Power company, highway department, etc probably have Right-of-way along the road.  Check your deed carefully, as you are probably not permitted any changes along their right of way.  They probably can/will remove any plantings within their right of way.  At the least, you would probably need an engineer to sign-off any form of retaining wall.
 
Jordan Lowery
pollinator
Posts: 1528
Location: zone 7
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agreed with the trees part, the county most likely wont like trees under the lines, or you wont like how they prune them.

as for the terracing the easiest way would be to drive some tall stakes in the ground, rest some long strong boards up against it, and backfill with good soil. repeat above that. this way you dont even have to compromise the integrity the slope already has. once plants establish the roots will hold it all together.

i would go with some fruiting shrubs that dont get too tall.
 
Posts: 192
Location: SW of France
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You should also look for some N²-fixing shrubs used to stabilize slopes (like sea buckthorn, some elaeagnus, etc)
 
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