Thank you, Steven. You know, I can’t remember a time, even from when I was a small boy, that I didn’t enjoy being around water or thinking about my next fishing trip. Growing up in East Texas I thought everyone came from a farm and grew up swimming and fishing in farm ponds. That early experience as a kid has turned into a life-long passion for fisheries and aquatics. A few years ago my daughter attended a natural resource conservation summer camp called Bass Brigade. I was truly impressed with the entire organization and got involved the next year as a volunteer. Not only did I enjoy helping out with the camps every summer, but I really got caught up in the science. The educators, biologists and fisheries specialists that help with these camps are some of the best and brightest in their fields, and I’ve had the privilege of getting to know them and learn more about the behind the scenes work that goes into properly managing ponds and lakes. I have been an entrepreneur most of my adult life and have owned and operated several small businesses through the years. In 2013 we sold an existing business and I decided it was time to pursue my passion for aquatics fulltime. There is an old saying that if you enjoy what you do that you for a living that it doesn’t seem like work. Well, I certainly enjoy helping people restore their ponds and lakes and preserving those resources for future generations!
Flexamat is a concrete block mat, used to stop soil erosion around pond and lake shorelines, inlets, spillways and dams. It consists of concrete blocks (6.5˝ x 6.5˝ with a 2.25˝ profile) locked together with a high strength, polypropylene geogrid. There is a 1.5˝ spacing between the blocks that gives the mat flexibility. The openings also allow vegetation to grow through the mat. Eventually, vegetation will completely cover Flexamat but you can mow over the top of it with a lawn mower. It can also be manufactured with various backings such as a non-woven fabric to stop vegetation growth or a TRM (turf re-enforcement mat) depending on the soil conditions and other factors. The mat is packaged in rolls, making transporting and installation efficient.
Flexamat was initially developed in 2000 by Jim Motz to stop shoreline erosion. A pond at Jim's personal residence developed a severe erosion problem due to muskrat burrowing, so he searched for a permanent solution but found none that were up to his standards. The lack of a solution led Jim to develop a product that would not only prevent muskrats from burrowing into his pond embankment but also protect the shoreline from erosion. That first installation of Flexamat at his home is still effectively preventing muskrat burrowing and shoreline erosion.
There's a wide range of applications where Flexamat is utilized, but it is most commonly used to control erosion on pond and lake shorelines, spillways, dams, channels, low water crossings and slope stabilization. Flexamat is also used for DOT highway, landfill, mining and USDA, NRCS and USACE projects. New applications for Flexamat are still being discovered.
One thing that comes to mind is boat ramps. Building boat ramps on existing ponds and lakes has always been a problem. Once a pond or lake is constructed the only way to build a permanent boat ramp is to put up a temporary Coffer Dam, drain the water and pour concrete. This of course can be very costly. Flexamat is a great solution for pond and lake boat ramps. You can install a permanent boat ramp with Flexamat in just a few hours without draining the water at a fraction of the cost of pouring concrete. Texas A&M Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Science is planning to test Flexamat for aquatic vegetation control. For most pond shoreline applications we typically put 4’ of the material below the water and 4’ above the water. The 4’ below the water would have a non-woven backing which would help limit invasive aquatic vegetation growth around the shoreline.
Flexamat is packaged in rolls of custom lengths and is available in widths of 4’, 5.5’, 8’, 10’, 12’, & 16’. The concrete blocks are 5,000 psi Portland cement and the mat weighs 10 lbs per square foot. TRI Environmental in Austin performed a channel erosion test using Flexamat over sandy loam and the material had a limiting shear of 24+psf and a limiting velocity of 19+ft/sec.
How much does Flexamat cost?
The price runs from $4.50 - $5.50 a square foot depending on the amount purchased, material width and backing material. A full truck load consists of approximately 10-12, 50’ rolls. We can also ship less than truck load shipments for smaller projects. Call or e-mail me and I will provide a firm price quote with shipping to your project site.
Where is Flexamat manufactured?
Flexamat is manufactured in Ohio and stocked in New Braunfels, TX.
How is it delivered and installed?
It is typically delivered to the jobsite on a semi flatbed. For most applications we use a rubber track mini-excavator to install Flexamat. You basically just unroll the material as it contours to the ground really well. We can provide turn-key installation services or some customers prefer to install themselves or have their contractor install. You can install approximately 2,000 square foot of Flexamat per hour with one equipment operator once the ground is graded and prepared for installation. Ordering Flexamat is easy. Just call or e-mail me and I will visit your project location to get measurements and make recommendations for material width and installation. After the site visit I will provide a firm price quote with shipping.
In addition to shoreline restoration and erosion control we also offer an environmentally friendly approach to removing silt and sediment from ponds, streams and canals that doesn't require draining the water or relocating fish. Our portable hydraulic dredging system allows us to perform in places that are inaccessible to mechanical equipment or large dredges. We have also teamed up with The Mapping Network to offer hydrographic and sediment surveys on ponds and lakes. Using a combination of sonar, GPS/GIS and manual probing techniques we are able to provide an accurate representation of the amount of soft sediment in a water body. We can also calculate the water volume, sediment accumulation areas and monitor the distribution of sediment over time. One of the best aspects of the mapping process is that it allows the owner and the dredging contractor to be on the same page. We have seen clients save tremendous amounts of money having a hydrographic and sediment survey performed before undertaking the dredging process.
You can send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or visit our website at www.envirodredge.com You can also visit our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/envirodredge