Stopping erosion of tidal creek

Asked January 11, 2015, 4:55 PM EST

I live in Portsmouth with a tidal creek running in the back. How do I fill in and stop the erosion that is occurring (fill dirt or something else)? Also what can I plant and where do I get something to put at the waters edge to help reduce the erosion? Thank you.

Portsmouth Virginia

3 Responses

Hi, This is Cyndi - Extension agent from the Portsmouth VCE office.

This is a difficult question to answer without additional information.

But the short answer is to have you contact the Portsmouth Planning Department at 393-8836 for a recommendation on the fill and to see what type of permit will be required.

They will need additional info, such as, is the erosion being caused by the tidal creek or from runoff of storm water. In most cases in Portsmouth the erosion is from storm water runoff.

In either case a permit from the Portsmouth Planning Department will be required to fill in (with anything) where the erosion is occurring. If the fill is placed within the tidal area ( from mean low water to 1.5 times the tidal range of mean low to mean high), then this would fall into the Wetlands Board jurisdiction, and would require a permit and a public hearing. If above this area but still within 100 feet of the tidal creek, then it still falls into the Chesapeake Bay Clean Water Act, handled by just the Planning Department (Stacy Porter 393-8836 ext 4210).

If it goes before the Wetlands Board, the Board would probably recommend redirecting the storm water runoff, filling with a mixture of sand and topsoil, and replanting with spartina to build a living shoreline.

If above the tidal range, I would recommend redirecting storm water, bringing in topsoil, and building a buffer garden, after a permit is obtained.

I hope this helps. If you have further questions please contact me directly at (757) 393-5314. Regards, Cyndi Wyskiewicz

Cyndi Wyskiewicz Extension agent- Horticulture

Virginia Cooperative Extension

Portsmouth Unit

105 Utah Street Portsmouth, VA 23701

Cyndi:
Thank you very much! This gives me a good idea of what I will need to do. I will call the office as the weather warms up and speak to someone more at that time. I just want to clear up that the erosion is coming from the tidal creek coming up to the bank and not from run off into the creek. It appears as if the creek gets unto 3-4 feet at high tide and then it is mud when the tide goes out.
Thanks again,
Neil McManus

You are welcome Neil, Happy to assist. we have a list of plants that we recommend that will work for your tidal creek area. Give my office a call when you are ready. Regards, Cyndi

Cyndi Wyskiewicz

Cyndi Wyskiewicz Extension agent- Horticulture

Virginia Cooperative Extension

Portsmouth Unit

105 Utah Street Portsmouth, VA 23701 (757)393-5314.