Sibley Soil & Water Conservation District
Helpful Design Tools
To begin, use the Sibley County Map Viewer below and navigate into the area you would like to design your windbreak.
Next, use the Layers Button to turn on the soils and click the map to identify your Conservation Tree/Shrub Group (CTS Group).
You will use this CTS group number to help determine what tree species will grow best in your soils, use the Sibley Co. Tree/Shrub Groups link above for species listed by group.
Now use the measure tool to determine distance with and select . Now click into the map to measure the length and width of your windbreak area.
See the map view example video below for help:
Width: The width will help to determine how many rows you can fit within your windbreak, see Recommended Windbreak Designs by Width below. Once you have identified the total number of rows you can fit, use the Rec'd Combination to determine what types of trees to use for each row in your windbreak.
Numbers 1-2: Shrubs
Numbers 3-4: Tall Shrub or Small Tree
Numbers 5-6: Tall Deciduous Tree
Numbers 7-8: Tall Conifer Tree
Numbers 9-10: Medium Conifer Tree
Lets say the measured width of the windbreak area is 90 feet wide. The recommended numbers of rows to use would be 3, with a row combination of either 1,7,8 or 7,8,9. Using the Rec'd row combination, the types of trees can then be assigned. For this example we will use 1,7,8:
Row #1: Shrub (1)
Row #2: Tall Conifer Tree (7)
Row #3: Tall Conifer Tree (8)
Now that we have identified the total number of rows that will fit as well as what types of tree's we should be using in each row, we can now select our tree species using our Conservation Tree/Shrub Group number and the Sibley Co. Tree/Shrub Groups link above.
Length: The length of your windbreak will determine the amount of trees needed per row. Divide the total length of the row by the desired within row spacing recommendations for your selected tree species.
Row to Row Spacing: The distance between each planned row. This will help to ensure each row has adequate room for growth. Keep in mind, the wider the spacing you use, the more overall width you will need.
Download the NRCS Design Worksheet to begin your design.
(Note, this worksheet will not work properly unless it is downloaded).
Select your CTS Group #/B from the dropdown list on page 2.
Be sure to reference the Sibley County Tree/Shrub Groups for refined a species selection and spacing guidance.