Wetland Construction: Principles and Techniques


June 16, 2014 - June 17, 2014


Eco Complex, Bordentown, NJ


Rutgers University


There are five basic steps in the process of developing a successful wetland construction plan. This course describes and develops all of these: PLANNING YOUR PROJECT: Before developing a wetland construction plan, you must understand the purpose of the wetland and the ultimate goals of the project. Your overall wetland plan must account for location, size, physiognomy, basic hydrologic regime, and current/future land use. The proposed primary function(s) must be specific, measurable, and achievable. The wetland is built by constructing structural elements that support the primary function(s). SELECTING YOUR CONSTRUCTION MODEL: You must select appropriate models for construction. The hydrogeomorphic model analyzes suitable water supply and landscape position, while the wetland construction model covers basic methods of wetland construction suited to the nature of the water supply. PREPARING YOUR WATER BUDGET & HYDROGRAPH: Water inputs and outputs must be used to prepare water budgets and hydrographs. Successful hydrograph preparation is reliant on data collection and interpretation. Using the results of the modeling facilitates the preparation of the hydrograph. DETERMINING PROPER VEGETATION: Vegetation adaptation, selection, and planting are keys to any successful wetland construction plan. You must verify the adaptive modes of plants suitable for your hydrologic regime, and accurately match these plants with your project. You must locate plants which represent native species assemblages and select proper planting methods. MANIPULATING SOIL: Sub-grade soil percolation must be suitable for the hydrogeomorphic model you develop. Substrate soils must prove suitable to support selected vegetation selections both in texture and nutrient composition. A visit to a constructed wetland complex in central New Jersey will highlight the "real world" application of classroom instruction.