What is Erosion?
Erosion is a continual slow process where the Earth's topsoil is displaced or the land's shape is altered by natural weathering elements. If left uncontrolled, erosion can cause drastic changes in the landscape that can devastate existing ecosystems.
Types of Erosion
Understanding the different types and causes of erosion is helpful when understanding how the advantages of hydroseeding can help prevent further destruction.
- Water Erosion: Water has both on-site and off-site consequences. When evaluating the effects of on-site erosion, water can wash away topsoil. Its runoff path can dig deep grooves in the ground and shuttle away soil, nutrients, whole plants, and seeds that are planted in the area. Off-site locations receive the movement of on-site sediment. The effects off-site locations face may not be noticeable at first, but soil accumulation buries seeds and prevents the formation of new vegetation in that area. Soil build-up and excess nutrients can negatively impact their final resting areas. The Florida legislature has worked to establish a control program to protect the Everglades from such erosion patterns.
- Wind: Wind has extreme effects on loose topsoil and sand. It whisks away fine particles and every time they land, their minute presence causes a small spot of abrasion on the landing surface. Over time, as more and more particles strike the same areas, the landscape change becomes noticeable. In places full of sand, wind causes a constant motion of sand dunes. The Sahara Desert can be thought of as a landscape in flux because it is highly susceptible to change from the wind.
- Tillage and Overgrazing: Farming practices can be detrimental to landscapes. Tilling digs up the dirt and creates loose soil. Depending on the slope of the land, gravity naturally pulls dirt from higher areas to lower and redistributes the soil. In addition to tillage, overgrazing occurs when animals are left to graze the land too long. As the animals rip the plant roots out, they strip the land and this removes the vegetation that was securing the soil in place.
One way to combat erosion is by the use of hydrograss technologies. Hydrograss forms from hydroseeding. The advantages of hydroseeding are endless. Hydroseeding is a slurry of seed, mulch, and fertilizers specifically developed to coat an area of land that promotes vegetation growth.
Three Advantages of Hydroseeding
- Flexible Application: Hydroseeding contractors can apply hydrograss to almost any type of landscape. The hydroseed mixture is a wet slurry that gets sprayed onto the land as if someone were spray painting their wall. This allows hydrograss to be evenly distributed on uneven lands, hilly slopes, and hard to reach areas because it can cling to the surface. It can be applied by hydroseed contractors via a truck and sometimes by airplane.
- Speed: Advantages to hydroseeding include a quick application process that is significantly less time than installing turf or hand seeding.
- Water Retention: Hydroseeding has a high rate of retaining moisture. This makes it ideal to use in times where vegetation might need to be grown during a dryer season. The hydroseed mixture also helps seal in the existing moisture in the land, which assists in the growth of the new grass seeds and the establishment of their root systems.
There are several advantages of hydroseeding, but the takeaway is that hydroseeding gives vegetation a bubble of protection to allow the growth process and root systems to take place. If vegetation is reformed on the landscape, this will help solidify the soil in place and protect it against the main forms of erosion.