Vetiver is mainly used for controlling erosion as it traps sediment, slows down the flow of water, and allows you to channel the water to where you want it to go. When placed in an inlet where springs or runoff water feeds another body of water it slows down the runoff while filtering the incoming water. It also keeps the valuable top soil that is lost during heavy rain / water movement and keeps fertilizers and other contaminants from entering our precious ground water.
Since Vetiver roots are 3-4 metres deep they absorb and also stores water it increases and maintains soil moisture. In our experience along with others around the world we have discovered that we require less water than we used to prior to introducing Vetiver. This also includes the addition of 250 avocado trees which consume a lot of water.
We have had experience on our property as well as others that had steep inclines that have been cleared and terraced for additional crop production. The Vetiver stops erosion on the newly created terraces and also provides wind protection in the winter for the tender young avocado trees. Out of 250 avocado trees we lost only one from wind damage.
The Spanish Government in 2008 used Vetiver to stabilize farm roads with steep roadside slopes to stop rock slides and mud slides. We have done the same numerous times with great results.
Vetiver actually repairs and protects land, gullies and areas with erosion and landslide potentials.
Vetiver benefits all types of crops through conserving the ground moisture and keeping the valuable top soil in place. It also provides more nutrients from its deep roots system for the various crops which results in better crop growth and harvest yield. Vetiver forms a symbiotic relationship with almost any plant and does not crowd the other plants or trees while helping the symbiotic plant.
Vetiver is sterile and can be trimmed and used as a very nutritious mulch with the added benefit of being an insect repellent.
Vetiver also is beneficial in cleaning sewage, leachate fields left from mining activities, chemical spills, etc.