Products Project dedicated solutions...  
 
 
Erosion Control Blankets (E.C.B) Unique soil cover...  
Erosion Control Blankets provide immediate soil surface stabilisation and protection from raindrop impact and surface erosion while vegetation establishes. They increase infiltration, decrease compaction and soil crusting, and conserve soil moisture...
 

Erosion Control Blankets (E.C.B)

Erosion Control Blankets (E.C.B)

Erosion Control Blankets (E.C.B)

Erosion Control Blankets (E.C.B)

Erosion Control Blankets (E.C.B)

 

Erosion control blankets provide immediate soil surface stabilisation and protection from raindrop impact and surface erosion while vegetation establishes. They increase infiltration, decrease compaction and soil crusting, and conserve soil moisture.

Erosion control blankets are used on slopes and disturbed soils where hydroseeding mulch and other materials such as tackifers are neither feasible nor adequate. Generally slopes steeper than 2:1, and/or slopes where erosion hazard is high will require the use of erosion control blankets. Their use is especially appropriate for critical slopes adjacent to sensitive areas, such as streams and wetlands, and disturbed soil areas, where planting is likely to be slow in providing adequate protective cover. Establishing vegetation in channels or on slopes may require additional measures beyond seeding.

Components of Erosion Control Blankets

Erosion control blankets are generally machine-produced mats made up of natural fibre netting, biodegradable mulch such as straw, curled wood fibre (excelsior), coconut fibre or a combination thereof.

The knitted synthetic fibres and filaments can either be biodegradable (6 months), photodegradable (6 months), or UV protected (typically 3-5 years).  

Erosion Control Blankets are also referred to as:

  • Protective blankets.
  • Soil stabilisation mats.
  • Turf reinforcement mats.

Uses of Erosion Control Blankets:

  • Temporarily stabilise and protect disturbed soil from raindrop impact and surface erosion;
  • Increase infiltration;
  • Decrease compaction and soil crusting;
  • Conserve soil moisture;
  • Slope stabilisation;
  • Soil erosion control;
  • Roadside protection;
  • Stream bank stabilisation;
  • Erosion protection of drainage slopes.

Benefits of using Erosion Control Blankets:

  • Better water absorption;
  • Prevents seed/soil loss;
  • Moderates moisture and increases microbial activity;
  • Creates micro-climate for faster seed germination;
  • Resists wind and rain shear force;
  • High tensile strength and lignin content;
  • Decomposition of fibres, if biodegradable blankets are used;
  • Environmentally sustainable.

Disadvantages

  • The slopes must be uniform and relatively smooth before installation to ensure complete contact with the soil.
  • The associated labour cost may be higher.
 
Erosion Control Cylinders (E.C.C)
 
Erosion Control Cylinders (E.C.C) Versatile soil control...  
Erosion Control Cylinders or 'Soil Sausages' are compost-filled tubes that have proven to be an effective solution for erosion control, while facilitating new vegetation growth for a permanent run-off protection solution. The cylinders, once installed, will act as immediate silt barriers...
 

Erosion Control Cylinders (E.C.C)

Erosion Control Cylinders (E.C.C)

Erosion Control Cylinders (E.C.C)

Erosion Control Cylinders (E.C.C)

 

Erosion Control Cylinders or 'Soil Sausages' are compost-filled tubes that have proven to be an effective solution for erosion control, while facilitating new vegetation growth for a permanent run-off protection solution. The cylinders, once installed, will act as immediate silt barriers and will prevent/reduce water erosion whilst the vegetation establishes and also during heavy rainfall episodes. Water easily passes through the cylinder, leaving silt and sediment behind.

Components of Erosion Control Cylinders

The 'Netlon' is a UV protected cylinder (can be supplied without UV Protection) that will outlast the filler material over time (typically 3-5 years). The tubes can also be biodegradable (6 months) or photodegradable (6 months).

Topographical Flexibility of Erosion Control Cylinders

The cylinders are installed; horizontally to the contours of embankments at specified intervals (Typically 0.5 m – 1.5 m between rows) and secured with wooden and/or steel pegs at approximately 300 to 500 mm spacing. Erosion control cylinders are ideal for new construction, stormwater run-offs, erosion and sediment control, washout areas, bank stabilisation or anywhere the landscape has been disrupted. Erosion control cylinders can be cut easily to any desired length and conforms to any terrain.

Advantages of Erosion Control Cylinders over Strip Sodding

Erosion control cylinders offer a viable and cost-effective alternative to traditional methods of strip sodding used for slope stabilisation; strip sodding requires water during establishment and 9 out of 10 times the section between the sodded rows will erode.

Benefits associated with Erosion Control Cylinders:

  • Reduces slope lengths and retards water flow;
  • Diminishes stormwater run-off pollution by capturing sediment;
  • Enhances re-vegetation of denuded slopes;
  • Prevents early stage rill and gully development by reducing sheet erosion;
  • Impedes sediment transport into waterways;
  • Conserves water, no need for follow-up irrigation after installation.

Types of Cylinders

Erosion control cylinders vary in diameter and can also be pre-seeded with selected seed – In this case the whole 'soil sausage' will 'sprout' after the rains and leave an aesthetically pleasing impression on rehabilitated slopes.
 
 
Erosion Control Cylinder-blankets (E.C.C-B) Ultimate soil control...  
Erosion Control Cylinder-blankets are High Density Poly Ethylene (HDPE) mesh blankets incorporating 400mm intervals of cylindrical tubes (120mm in diameter); filled with an organic material and/or in-situ (water monitoring instrument) that provides immediate erosion control...
 





 

Erosion Control Cylinder-blankets are High Density Poly Ethylene (HDPE) mesh blankets incorporating 400mm intervals of cylindrical tubes (120mm in diameter); filled with an organic material and/or in-situ (water monitoring instrument) that provides immediate erosion control.

The mesh is UV stabilised (unless otherwise specified by our clients) and will outlast the compost filler material over time. The erosion control cylinder-blankets will act as silt barriers and prevent/reduce erosion whilst vegetation establishes and during heavy rainfall episodes. The cylinders allow water to percolate with little restraint and prevent soil from eroding down a slope. The blanket is secured or buried on the crest of the slope and the cylinders are arranged parallel to the contours.

Components of Erosion Control Cylinder-Blankets

The erosion control cylinder-blankets are machine produced mats, knitted synthetic fibres and filaments that can either be biodegradable (6 months), photodegradable (6 months), or UV protected (typically 3-5 years).

Topographical Flexibility of Erosion Control Cylinder-Blankets

They are used on rocky/uneven cut and fill slopes to offer immediate and effective erosion protection. The cylinder-blanket combinations are flexible and will follow the contours with ease, preventing soil erosion.

Benefits associated with Erosion Control Cylinder-Blankets:

  • Reduces slope lengths and retards water flow;
  • Diminishes stormwater run-off pollution by capturing sediment;
  • Enhances re-vegetation of denuded slopes;
  • Prevents early stage rill and gully development by reducing sheet erosion;
  • Impedes sediment transport into waterways;
  • Conserves water, no need for follow-up irrigation after installation;
  • Better absorbs water;
  • Prevents seed/soil loss;
  • Moderates moisture and increases microbial activity;
  • Creates micro-climate for faster seed germination;
  • Resists wind and rain shear force;
  • High tensile strength;
  • Environmentally sustainable.
 
 
Vetiver Grass Unique soil control...  
Vetiver Grass is a unique and practical solution for erosion control, soil stabilisation, water conservation, water disaster mitigation and pollution control among various other uses. Unlike most grasses, Vetiver roots grow vertically in close-growing culms which stabilise the soil ...
 





 

 

 

The Vetiver Solution

Vetiver Grass is a unique and practical solution for erosion control, soil stabilisation, water conservation, water disaster mitigation and pollution control among various other uses. Unlike most grasses, Vetiver roots grow vertically in close-growing culms which stabilise the soil and prevent the run-off of surface water. This also makes Vetiver an excellent stabilisation hedge for river embankments, canals, terraces, and for steep cut and fill slopes. Vetiver propagates itself by small off-sets instead of underground stolons and can easily be controlled by cultivation of the soil at the boundary of the hedge.

Classification

Vetiver grass, Chrysopogon zizanioides, is from the family Gramminaea. There are 12 known species, varieties and cultivars, but there could exist many different cultivars that exhibit distinctive phenotypic which can be applied by users depending on need.

Uses:

  • Provides slope stabilisation;
  • Absorbs water and maintains soil moisture;
  • Absorbs minerals and nutrients;
  • Decomposes as organic matter, thus making the soil friable;
  • Absorbs toxic substances in chemical fertilisers and pesticides;
  • Improves the physical element of the soil.

The Vetiver System

The Vetiver System is the technology of soil conservation and water quality management that is based on the use of the Vetiver plant. It is used in over 100 countries across the globe promoting the Vetiver System for a sustainable environment.

Widely used varieties are:

  • Chrysopogon zizanioides (Vetiveria zizanioides)
  • Vetiver nigratana
  • Vetiver nemoralis

Habitat

  • Climate: Temperature - Mean 18-25oC - Mean coldest Month 5oC - Absolute Minimum-15oC. When ground freezes plants die. Hot Summer Temps (25oC + is required for rapid growth);
  • Rainfall: As low as 300mm, but above 700 mm preferable, will survive total drought, but normally requires a wet season of at least three months;
  • Humidity: Grows better under humid conditions, but also does well under low humidity;
  • Sunshine: Poor survival and growth under complete shade;
  • Soil: Grows best on deep sandy soils, however, it will grow on most soil types ranging from black cracking vertisoil through to red alfisoil. Grows on rubble, both acid (pH3 and alkali (pH11)). It is tolerant to high levels of mineral toxicity Al, Mg, (500ppm);
  • Vetiver will survive completely submerged in water for up to three months;
  • Altitude ranges: from sea level up to 3000 m;
  • Slope ranges: from zero to maximum slope percentage
  • Longevity: The longest recorded lifespan of a Vetiver plant is about 60 years in Zambia and 100 years in Fiji.

Other Uses:

  • Making herbs and skin care substances;
  • Extracting volatile oils for making perfume and aromatic ingredients;
  • Ornamental plant;
  • Mattress stuffing, making brooms;
  • Trapping crop residues and silt eroded by run-off;
  • Roof thatching;
  • As raw material for making paper;
  • Vetiver has been used in traditional medicine in South Asia, Southeast Asia, and West Africa.
 
 
Wind breaks & Silt Fences Shielding the elements...  
Wind breaks are primarily used to control soil erosion and conserve soil and plant moisture by lowering evaporation rates. Wind breaks are one of the most important conservation practices in areas with relatively ?at landscapes and light, sandy or organic soils...
 





 

Wind breaks

Wind breaks are primarily used to control soil erosion, conserve soil and plant moisture by lowering evaporation rates. Wind breaks are one of the most important conservation practices in areas with relatively ?at landscapes and light, sandy or organic soils.

Components of Wind breaks

A wind break is made up of a continuous wall of synthetic filter fabric (also called a geotextile) stretched between a series of wooden fence stakes perpendicular to the wind. The height determines how far wind protection extends, and the density determines the degree of protection. The general rule is that a wind break will reduce wind to a distance 10 times its height and reduce wind speed 70 to 80% immediately inside the barrier.

Silt fences

Silt fences, also called 'filter fences', are temporary sediment control devices used on construction sites to protect water quality in nearby streams, rivers and dams from sediment in storm water run-off. Silt fences are perimeter controls, typically used in combination with erosion controls, which are designed to retain sediment in place where soil is being disturbed by construction processes.

Components of Silt Fences

A typical fence consists of a piece of synthetic filter fabric (also called a geotextile) stretched between a series of wooden or metal fence stakes along a horizontal contour level. The stakes are installed on the downhill side of the fence, and the bottom edge of the fabric is trenched into the soil and backfilled on the uphill side. The storm water slowly passes through the fence while depositing its sediments on the uphill side of the fence. The fence is not designed to concentrate or channel storm water. The fence is installed on a site before soil disturbance begins down-slope from the disturbed area.

Sediment is captured by silt fences primarily through ponding of water and settling, rather than filtration by the fabric. Sand and silt tends to clog the fabric, and then the sediments settle in the temporary pond.

Silt fences may perform poorly for a variety of reasons, including improper location (e.g. placing fence in an area with concentrated storm water flows), improper installation (e.g. failure to adequately embed and backfill the lower edge of fabric in the soil) and lack of maintenance.

Purposes:

  • To intercept and detain small amounts of sediment from disturbed areas during vegetation establishment and on construction operations in order to prevent sediment from leaving the site;
  • To decrease the velocity of sheet flows and low-to-moderate flows.

Conditions where Practice applies:

  • Below disturbed areas where erosion would occur in the form of sheet and rill erosion;
  • Where the maximum slope length behind the barrier is 30 meters;
  • Where the maximum gradient behind the barrier is 50 percent (2:1).

Considerations

Research has shown that silt fences can trap a much higher percentage of suspended sediments than straw bales, although silt fences filter the sediment-laden water at a slower rate. Silt fences are preferable to straw barriers in many cases because of their durability and potential cost saving. While the failure rate of silt fences is lower than that of straw barriers, many instances have been observed where silt fences are improperly installed, inviting failure and sediment loss.

General Maintenance

Sediment deposits should be removed after each storm event. They must be removed when deposits reach approximately one-half the height of the barrier.
 
 
Dust, Sediment & Erosion Control Agents Soil binding at its best...  
The wide ranging forms of erosion necessitate an assortment of effective erosion control agents. At Thabakholo we are able to provide the best in dust suppressants, binders and tackifiers to ensure long lasting soil and slope stabilization, effective dust and sediment control, better...
 



 

The wide ranging forms of erosion necessitate an assortment of effective erosion control agents. At Thabakholo we are able to provide the best in dust suppressants, binders and tackifiers to ensure long lasting soil and slope stabilization, effective dust and sediment control, better water penetration and better seed germination.

Dust Control (Dust suppressants)

Dust control is the suppression and stabilisation of airborne dust particles brought on by development activities and heavy traffic on dirt roads. Our goal is to safeguard the environment from erosion and dust pollution using polymer-based emulsions that bind the soil and prevent dust particles from becoming airborne.

Advantages

  • Reduces soil erosion,
  • Prevents dust pollution,
  • Saves water,
  • Environmentally safe.

Sediment & Erosion Control (Soil Binders and Tackifiers)

Soil binders and tackifiers are typically applied to disturbed areas to prevent wind and water erosion and are also used in hydroseeding slurry. The tackifier, being a water-soluble polymer increases the thickness of the slurry and binds the seed and the mulch together; while the soil binder ensures better water penetration and more effective seed germination due to its anti-erosion properties.

Advantages

  • Reduces wind and water erosion,
  • Aids the hydroseeding process,
  • Saves water,
  • Environmentally safe.
 
 
Grass Seeds Safeguard our natural resources...  
Our Grass seeds (Thabakholo Seeds (Pty) Ltd) are locally harvested, cultivated and non-cultivated, indigenous seeds of a broad variety. Due to growing demand, the operation is constantly expanding, reflecting the growing global ecological awareness to safeguard our natural resources...
 





 

Our Grass seeds (Thabakholo Seeds (Pty) Ltd) are locally harvested, cultivated and non-cultivated, indigenous seeds of a broad variety. Due to growing demand, the operation is constantly expanding, reflecting the growing global ecological awareness to safeguard our natural resources.

Products

The Thabakholo Seeds website (www.grassseeds.co.za) is currently under construction, visit again soon to see the new site. If you are interested in obtaining products or require further information, please contact Barend Esterhuizen (barend@grassseeds.co.za) or Waltman Botha (waltman@grassseeds.co.za).

About Us

Our Vision

To be the preferred supplier of non-cultivated seeds locally, and throughout Africa.

Mission

To supply superior quality indigenous/endemic grass seeds, demonstrated by high standards over time.

Our Quest

To be recognised for our innovative and professional service, meeting specific geographical (bioregional) project requirements and providing practical, sustainable and cost effective vegetation solutions.

History

Sustainable Ecological Rehabilitation

The concept of sustainable ecological rehabilitation essentially received the necessary attention during the mid-1970's, mostly on road projects, progressing to mine dumps. It has developed into the norm for civil engineering, mining and other environmental projects that cause ecological disturbance in South Africa, the Sub-Continent and further afield.

The North West University (NWU), formerly known as Potchefstroom University (PU for CHE) was asked by the Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) to conduct further studies on harvesting indigenous material, that were previously done for the former Transvaal Provincial Administration (TPA).

Improved biodiversity equals improved sustainability

Significant research was conducted on this matter by Prof. Koos van Wyk, of the Research Institute for Restoration Ecology (RIRE) at the University of the North West. This concept was vigorously suggested in several publications, i.e. that the sustainability of re-planting indigenous grasses by removal/harvest from their natural habitat far exceeds that of commercially cultivated grasses of the same types. Insofar as the biodiversity of a certain area is concerned, the variety of types, consistent growth and ground covering required will be obtained by a more natural process.

Initially, rehabilitation was performed by utilising commercially cultivated grass seeds. Commercially cultivated grasses were used for rehabilitation with some success, but sustainability and diversity could not be achieved.

Commercially cultivated grasses are more dependent on frequent fertilisation and irrigation, especially on deprived soils (mine dumps) and more often than not a "mono" stand establishes. Approximately 6 indigenous grass species are commercially cultivated, which impedes the potential to revert back to diverse grassland.

Indigenous/endemic grass species were found to be the most effective in the pursuit of diversity. The well-known "Potch mix", indigenous grass seed combination (Cultivated & Non-Cultivated mix) was developed in order to suitably attain diversity.

Harvesting projects were initiated in the early 1980's by EKO-REHAB (previously RIRE) from the North West University (NWU). Subsequently the research institute privatised and became involved in doing additional asbestos mine rehabilitation locally for the Department of Minerals & Energy (DME). Legislation was implemented for mining in South Africa based on the outcome of this research. The studies were furthered by several other South African academic institutions and a whole new era arrived for restoration in this country. EKO-REHAB dissolved and the remnants of the company were absorbed into the North West University.

Thabakholo Seeds (Pty) Ltd has assumed management and ownership of the Indigenous seed harvesting and general distribution operation. With the required expertise and extensive experience, the Company has developed into a long term, responsible solution to an essential need.

 
 
Sodding Instant cover...  
An alternative to hydroseeding is to install instant grass cover that is either professionally grown and harvested turf, or site specifically (locally) harvested veld sod...
 





 

An alternative to hydroseeding is to install instant grass cover that is either professionally grown and harvested turf, or site specifically (locally) harvested veld sod.

Methods of application

  • Full-sodding,
  • strip-sodding and
  • grass cuttings, grass runners or sprigging.

Full-Sodding

Full sodding is used to attain instant vegetation or turf cover on any area, for example: sports fields, slopes or channel outlays. Generally we use instant lawn for slope stabilisation in areas that receive high rainfall.

The sods are harvested by slicing a few centimetres down into the soil and into the blanket of living grass plants, cutting underneath lengths of the turf to separate it from the soil in the field. The strips of grass and their roots, still retaining the moist soil, are then rolled or stacked, ready for use. The sod is cut into strips and placed directly onto the prepared soil surface and pegged (approximately 2-4 pegs per m2) for initial anchoring, providing instant soil stabilisation in order to reduce erosion.

Strip-Sodding

Strip-sodding is used primarily for slope stabilisation (instant grass cover) where strips of sod are placed horizontally, in rows about 1-2 meters apart, along embankments to reduce erosion.

Grass Cuttings, Grass Runners or Sprigging

Pieces of sod, grass runners or processed grass clippings can be mechanically rotovated into the prepared soil or planted manually.

1m2 of sod can cover an area of 5-10m2, depending on how soon vegetation establishment is required.

Types of Grass used for Sodding

Sodding can be used either for rehabilitation purposes or for urban landscaping. Different grasses are used for different purposes. For example, Kikuyu grass is used for urban settings and not for rehabilitation projects as it becomes an invader in wetlands.

Some Turf Grasses used for Urban Landscaping and Sports Fields:

  • Pennisetum Clandestinum (Kikuyu)
  • Cynodon Dactylon (Kweek/Couch Grass)
  • Dactyloctenium Australe (Berea/LM Grass)
  • Agrostis Palustris (Bent Grass)
  • Poa Pratensis (Kentucky Blue Grass)
  • Stenotaphrum Secundatum (Buffalo Turf Grass)
  • Festuca Elatior (Fescue)
  • Cynodon variety (Gulf Green)
  • Cynodon variety (Bayview)
  • Cynodon variety (TifSport)
  • Cynodon variety (GN2)
  • All Seasons Evergreen (Fescue/Rye blend)
  • Shade-Over (Fescue/Rye blend)

Some Turf Grasses used for Rehabilitation:

  • Cynodon Dactylon (Kweek/Couch Grass)
  • Dactyloctenium Australe (Berea/LM Grass)
  • Stenotaphrum Secundatum (Buffalo Turf Grass)
 
 
Straw stabilisation Temporary erosion control...  
Straw stabilisation is an effective temporary erosion control method which protects soil from the impact of rain drops, preventing soil particles from becoming dislodged...
 


 

Straw stabilisation is an effective temporary erosion control method which protects soil from the impact of rain drops, preventing soil particles from becoming dislodged.

Application

Straw is used as a binding material in areas or disturbed sites with deep sand or where insufficient indigenous plant material is available for wind protection. Baled straw is placed on the cleared area, opened and spread evenly by hand or machine. The straw mulch is then either 'punched' into the soil mechanically or a tackifier is used to bind the straw fibres. Generally the coverage rate for the area to be stabilised is 1 bale per 10 m².

Limitations

  • Potential for introduction of weed seed and unwanted plant material,
  • Straw mulch applied by hand is time-intensive and potentially costly,
  • Wind may limit application of straw,
  • Straw may have to be removed prior to permanent seeding or further earthwork.
 
 

       
 
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