Swales are the broad shallow channels along, roads, driveways, and parking lots and plays a key role for the City’s Stormwater drainage system.
The three functions of a swale are:
To collect runoff from the roadway and properties
Direct water to an outfall (ditch or canal)
Retain runoff for percolation and recharge of the aquifer.
Swale Related Issues
Here are some simple, yet significant, steps the property owner should follow for routine swale maintenance:
- Mow and maintain an acceptable grass height in the swale. Tall grass slows water movement.
- Keep driveway culvert ends open by removing debris, grass and dirt. You should blow grass clippings back onto the grass or landscaped areas.
- Repair erosion from along the sides and under your driveway.
- Remove sediment or anything that has built up in the bottom of the swale that could potentially block the flow of water such as trash, leaves, limbs and grass.
- Minimize the use of fertilizer, pesticides and herbicides within 50 feet of a swale.
- Install Plants / landscaping 15-20 feet from the road.
- Fill in your swale or install a drain pipe from property line to property line.
- Have roof drains running onto the driveway or into the right of way.
- Use an edger along the sides of your driveway.
- Park on or drive across your swale as cars and the tire tracks they leave behind can block the flow of water.