Unruh Excavating cuts terraces on hilly farmland where needed to control runoff and erosion. Specifically, we do gradient terracing and storage terracing. We are often called upon to shape the land for terrace farming throughout Kansas in Sedgwick, Harvey, Marion, Reno, and McPherson Counties. As an approved excavating contractor for Natural Resource Conservation (NRCS) projects in Kansas, we’ll ensure the work is completed according to the required specifications.
Optimal Terrace Design
Unruh Excavating uses GPS-controlled equipment to plan and excavate terraces in the optimal location and layout for your land.
What is Terracing?
Also known as step farming, terracing is the process of forming or cutting sloped land into a series of stepped level areas for farming. It’s a common tool for soil conservation in agriculture.
In drier areas of Kansas, contour terraces can be created to collect rainwater and then hold it until it’s absorbed by the soil. A contour terrace system follows the slope of the land to capture water as it naturally runs downslope. In contrast, parallel terraces are installed in straight, parallel lines without regard for the contour of the land. These earthen systems of ridges and channels effectively collect water and then move it to where it’s needed.
Terraces need to be maintained to prevent washouts and mudslides, especially if the soil is sandy or the land is steeply sloped.
Which Field Conditions Are Best for Terraces?
Broad-based terraces are best for fields with slopes of less than 8% that are long and relatively uniform. Fill material can be moved as needed to improve the field’s overall slope. If the soil is shallow, topsoil can be removed from the cut and fill areas and then spread on the terrace and borrow areas.
Contact us to request an estimate for adding terraces to your farm.
Benefits of Terrace Farming
Breaking up the slope of the land reduces the amount and the speed of rainwater’s flow.
Reduce Soil Erosion
Slowing water runoff prevents soil and nutrients from being washed away down the slope.
Each level of a terrace will collect and hold rainwater until it’s absorbed into the soil.
No Need for Grassed Waterways
Terraces integrate water management and soil conservation without grassed waterways.
Increased Land Productivity
With no grassed waterways, all of the land area can be used for producing crops.
Improves Crop Yield
The combination of more farmable land and less soil erosion can lead to higher crop yields.