Conservation Drainage

Throughout Illinois and other parts of the Midwest, farmers are increasingly investing in tile drainage systems to improve productivity and trafficability of their fields. Conservation drainage practices such as bioreactors, controlled drainage systems, saturated buffers, and constructed wetlands, are designed to capture and treat drainage from tile outlets, providing effective and often long-term nutrient loss reduction benefits.

SWCS Controlled Drainage Video

This video, in the SWCS Conservation Media Library, shows how conservation drainage provides more control and additional benefits to your fields.

Watch Video

NRCS Conservation Drainage

The NRCS Conservation Drainage webpage provides an overview of several conservation drainage practices, research, and additional resources.

View Website

NRCS Bioreactor Conservation Practice Standard Factsheet

This one page factsheet from NRCS provides an overview of woodchip bioreactors, how they fuction, and the benefits they provide.

View Website

ADMC Bioreactor

This ADMC webpage provides information on bioreactors including considerations for installation and financial impacts.

View Website

University of Illinois Woodchip Bioreactor

Simple woodchip-filled trenches called bioreactors can clean nitrogen pollution from water. Find out more from Dr. Laura Christianson of the University of Illinois as she talks about one of her favorite ideas.

Watch Video

Woodchip Bioreactors: A Science-based Option to Reduce Nitrate Loss

This fact sheet answers some of the most common questions about woodchip bioreactors using a recent survey of all published bioreactor research.

View Website