Various methods are available for erosion control. One popular choice is vegetation mats, also known as erosion control blankets. This erosion control method is ideal for moderate slopes, but flat surfaces requiring protection from wind and water erosion can benefit from vegetation mats as well.
Outside of the residential setting, erosion control blankets can protect roadways from water and wind damage and mitigate the flow of sediments into streams and rivers. Sediment runoff not only contaminates water supplies but can also clog municipal drainage systems, thereby necessitating costly cleanups.
Here is what you need to know about vegetation mats.
Basics of Vegetation Mats
Vegetation mats are a type of rolled erosion control product woven from a natural or synthetic material. Contractors and property owners place these blankets on erosion-prone areas to slow down the flow of water across the surface.
Erosion control mats feature strategically woven ridges and spaces to obstruct the flow of water and therefore mitigate erosion. You can use vegetation mats in areas where you want to grow grass or plant tree seeds.
Types of Vegetation Mats
Vegetation mats come in many different types and sizes. Some mats are biodegradable while others are nonbiodegradable or synthetic.
Synthetic Vegetation Mats
Synthetic vegetation mats are made from non-biodegradable materials such as geo-fabric, synthetic fiber, and plastic. These mats offer long-term erosion control solutions and, with proper installation and maintenance, can last for many years.
On the downside, non-biodegradable vegetation mats are not effective at retaining the moisture that seeds need for germination.
Biodegradable Vegetation Mats
Biodegradable vegetation mats are made from natural materials such as jute, coconut, and curled wood. This type of mat offers short-term solutions and typically lasts between a few months and a few years.
Because biodegradable vegetation mats are natural, they are particularly helpful for plant growth. These mats also adhere firmly to the soil, protecting seeds against intruders such as feeding birds.
Selection of Vegetation Mats
Selection of vegetation mats requires careful consideration of various factors.
Different types of vegetation mats are suitable for different slope degrees. For example, single net biodegradable mats are usually appropriate for flat or slightly sloped sites while double net blankets are best suited for steep slopes.
Select vegetation mats whose weave can effectively hold the underlying soil particles. Mats made from wood fiber, for example, are suitable for stabilizing sandy soils.
Water flow is a function of the slope degree. Select a vegetation mat whose netting, threading, and fiber qualities can slow down water to the desired velocity.
Vegetation mats vary in cost due to factors such as the type of material, netting, and threading of the mat. Cost considerations will depend on your budget but, more importantly, on the ability of individual erosion control mats to meet site requirements.
The longevity of a vegetation mat is a measure of how long the mat can provide effective erosion control to allow vegetation to grow. Factors such as the fiber, netting, and stitching thread can affect the mat's longevity. Select a mat that can meet or exceed the period within which you expect the vegetation to establish.
These are just a few factors to consider when selecting erosion control blankets. Work with a reputable erosion control expert who can help you identify the most suitable vegetation mat for your site.
Vegetation mats are an effective and affordable way to stabilize slopes and mitigate the effects of erosion on commercial and municipal sites.
If you are looking for premium vegetation mats in Lawrenceville, Georgia, you can trust the erosion control specialists at DX2 Geosyntex, Inc. Call us today to learn more about our innovative stabilization and drainage solutions for stopping erosion.