Comments Invited on Buffer Law; Check the Map
The Minnesota Dept. of Natural Resources (DNR) is inviting corrections and comments to the preliminary buffer maps now available at the agencys website. The site includes a link to the preliminary buffer maps and other information about implementation of the law. By scrolling to the bottom of the page, viewers are directed to suggest corrections to the preliminary buffer maps to their local Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) office. To submit a comment to the DNR about how the buffer map is being created, send an email to email@example.com. According to the DNR website, these comments, which are public information, will be collected and reviewed but in most cases will not receive an individual reply.
Those who know the land best are in the best position to check the accuracy of the buffer maps. Reports from landowners have included finding errors in the maps. In order to get these errors corrected, landowners must contact their local SWCD office
Innovative Buffer Program Benefits Farmers and Surface Water
The Sauk River Watershed District (SRWD) is taking applications for a unique program that offers farmers a cost effective means to make buffers part of their operation. The SRWD "Hayed Buffer Program" was introduced in 2015 as an economical alternative for farmers that would like to leave a buffer along their ditches or streams but retain the freedom to harvest the hay crop.
More info here
Fitting Cover Crops into Your Rotation
Cover crops are an excellent way to build organic matter, protect soil from erosion, fight weeds, capture nutrients, and even provide supplemental forage; they help mimic a natural system where there is cover year round when interseeded into or planted after cash crops. When planting cover crops you can look at your specific goals and consider legumes for a nitrogen source, nutrient recovery and increased infiltration with deep rooted brassicas (i.e. turnips and radishes), or try a mixture that will cover multiple resource concerns. One helpful tool is the Cover Crop Decision Tool offered by the Midwest Cover Crops Council http://www.mccc.msu.edu/index.htm.
NRCS Accepting 2017 EQIP Signups
The U.S. Department of Agriculture′s (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is accepting applications to help farmers improve water and air quality, build healthier soil, improve grazing and forest lands, conserve energy, enhance organic operations, and achieve other environmental benefits. Farmers that are interested in Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) need to apply by August 19, 2016. click here for more info
Stearns County SWCD Facebook Feed
Conservation buffers are strips of vegetation placed in the landscape to influence ecological processes and provide a variety of goods and services to us. They are called by many names, including wildlife corridors, greenways, windbreaks, and filter strips to name just a few.
Benefits that conservation buffers provide to us include protecting soil resources, improving air and water quality, enhancing fish and wildlife habitat, and beautifying the landscape. In addition, buffers offer landowners an array of economic opportunities including protection and enhancement of existing enterprises.
find out more here
Stearns County SWCD Supervisors Leading the Way on Agricultural Water Quality
The Stearns County Soil and Water Conservation District’s Board of Supervisors are leading by example on the vital issue of agricultural water quality stewardship.
The four farming supervisors on the board—Dave Brinkman, Tom Gregory, Chuck Uphoff and Dave Weller—have all earned certification under the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP). Minnesota’s Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program certifies farmers and landowners for protecting water quality through a comprehensive whole-farm assessment that puts farmers together with local professionals to determine where risks to water quality exist on their farm, and empowers them to fix those risks when they’re found.
Read More Here
SWCD Press Releases
- Innovative Buffer Program Benefits
- Sustainable Agricultural Cover Crops Demonstration
- Buffer Legislation Update
- MAWQCP Third Street Brewery OPen House
- Women Caring for the Land Session
- Stearns Students to Complete at State Envirothon
- SWCD Partners with Third Street Bewhouse
- Climate Adaptation Award
Past Press Releases Click here...
Other News Click here...
greenstarfarms.org - How Does Your Stewardship Rate?
FREE posters available!
The On-Farm Network® is here.
The Stearns County SWCD is partnering with the On-Farm Network® to assist farmers in implementing stalk nitrate evaluations to help them fine tune Nitrogen management in corn production. Click here for more information.
Learn about Pheasants Forever.
Check out the video at the bottom of the Pheasants Forever page. Click here...
Want to learn about the soil on your property?
Check out the Web Soil Survey Click here...
Department of Natural Resources is taking tree orders (minimum order 500 trees). Click here for more information.
Mississippi River Basin Initiative Program
The Stearns SWCD and partners have been awarded over $4 million for projects that will protect and restore the waters of the Sauk River. Working with many partners, the SWCD will provide assistance to producers to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus while supporting agricultural productively and wildlife habitat. Learn more...