Surface Drain/Field Ditch (NRCS 607)

What is it: 

A graded ditch for collecting excess water in a field. Used to drain surface depressions; collect or intercept excess surface water, such as sheet flow, from natural and graded land surfaces or channel flow from furrows and carry it to an outlet; and collect or intercept excess subsurface water and move it to an outlet.

Where is it used: 

Applicable sites are flat or nearly flat and:

  1. Have soils that are slowly permeable (low permeability) or that are shallow over barriers, such as rock or clay, which hold or prevent ready percolation of water to a deep stratum.
  2. Have surface depressions or barriers that trap rainfall.
  3. Have insufficient land slope for ready movement of runoff across the surface.
  4. Receive excess runoff or seepage from uplands.
  5. Require the removal of excess irrigation water.
  6. Require control of the water table.
  7. Have adequate outlets available for disposal of drainage water by gravity flow or pumping.