Pounding in a live stake to anchor a live fascine along Saul Creek, which flows through a residential neighborhood and park within the town of Burns Lake, British Columbia. Techniques can often be combined in this way.


Applications and Techniques

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As noted previously in the in the physiology section, the basic unit of most Soil Bioengineering techniques is a woody stem cutting. What this section covers is the many uses, and combinations possible using woody stem cuttings, all of which are really just variations on a theme. Direct seeding, or planting of nursery reared seedlings can also be mixed in with these practices if desired, but will not be part of the focus here. The best species for any of these techniques using cuttings are Willows, Poplars, and Red Osier Dogwood.

The choice of technique depends one's conditions and objectives. Two primary considerations are the physical characteristics of the site and plant species available to use on it. Depending upon the length and steepness of the slope one may be able achieve the desired stability with simple Soil Bioengineering techniques such those in the photo above. On a long or steep slope however, Biotechnical Stabilization techniques may be more appropriate.


The focus here will be on:

Soil Bioengineering:

Biotechnical Stabilization:

Several excellent references exist in order to help one determine what technique is most appropriate, and how to construct it. One of the best is Hugo Schiechtl's 1980 book, listed in the reference section. However, it is out of print and so can hard to locate. Fortunately Schiechtl came out with two new books in 1996 (pictured at right), that are also quite good, and easier to track down. Many other useful references are listed on the References page. Quite a lot of information is also available online in .pdf format. Links to these and other documents are on the Resources page.


Continued: Live Stakes

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Water Bioengineering Techniques for watercourse bank and shoreline protection Shiechtl and Stern 1996


Ground Bioengineering Techniques for slope protection and erosion control ............... Shiechtl and Stern 1996