Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts

We support Pennsylvania’s Conservation Districts who work for clean water and healthy soil every day.

Lawrence County Conservation Districts Holds Rain Barrel Workshops

Photo of workshop participant provided by Lawrence County Conservation District.

Lawrence County Conservation District held two rain barrel workshops. Forty-eight participants received education regarding watersheds, nonpoint source pollution, water quality, stormwater management, and best management practices to help reduce stormwater runoff.

The presentations were followed by a tour of a rain garden and cistern used in the local community garden. Thirty rain barrels with adapter kits were distributed during the workshops.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Clarion Conservation District Holds Grazing Field Day

Rob Thompson, sheep farmer from Potter County, discussing his successes with improving his forages and reducing the parasite pressures in his 200-ewe flock by implementing a system that includes daily rotations and over 60-day rest periods between grazing events. Photo taken by Lindsay Shapiro from PA Sustainable Agriculture (PASA).

On October 20, 2023, ninety-eight farmers and agency employees attended an educational grazing field day titled “Harvesting Abundance: Sustainability in our Grazing Havens,” held at the Wilson Land & Cattle Co. in Tionesta, PA.

Most attendees plan to implement the conservation practices they learned, including soil health improvement, rotational grazing, biodiversity, and non-point source pollution reduction via cover crop planting with a no-till planter.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Snyder County Conservation District Holds Farming for the Future Day Event

Man operating drone.

Jason Snyder, Owner/Pilot of Horizon Crop Care LLC of New Bloomfield, talked about what drones can do for farmers. Photo provided by Snyder County Conservation District.

Submitted by Barry Spangler, Ag Conservation Technician, Snyder County Conservation District

The Snyder County Conservation District held a Farming for the Future Day event at the Middlecreek Valley Antique Association Grounds in Selinsgrove on November 1, 2023. Eighteen farmers, landowners, consultants, and conservationists attended the event.

Click here to read more and see more photos. 

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Lehigh County Conservation District Installs Rain Garden

Photos provided by Lehigh County Conservation District.

The Lehigh County Conservation District, in partnership with Lehigh County, installed a rain garden at Cedar View Apartments, which provides low-income housing to 122 residents who are older than 62 years of age or are physically challenged.

Residents learned the importance of minimizing stormwater runoff and nonpoint source pollutants from adjacent parking lots and mowed lawns through an educational program at the project site.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Montgomery County Conservation District Holds Native Meadow and Riparian Buffer Showcase

Photo of riparian planting provided by MCCD.

On Friday, September 22, 2023, in partnership with Variety – the Children’s Charity of the Delaware Valley, Montgomery County Conservation District (MCCD) held a “Native Meadow and Riparian Buffer Showcase.” This event toured and described a native meadow and two riparian plantings installed on the Variety campus. The benefits, steps to installation, maintenance requirements, funding, and other project details were discussed.

The meadow planting was completed as a demonstration through a partnership between MCCD, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Penn State Extension, and Variety – the Children’s Charity of the Delaware Valley.

The riparian plantings were completed through funding from the TreeVitalize Watersheds (now “Trees for Watersheds”) grant program. The partnership between MCCD and Variety – the Children’s Charity of the Delaware Valley has been ongoing since 2019, with the meadow planting in Fall 2019 and riparian plantings installed in Fall 2020 and Fall 2021. There were approximately 40 people in attendance at the event, coming from many organizations and groups, but all coming together in their interest in environmental conservation projects.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Franklin County Conservation District Holds Annual Summer Conservation Farm Tour

Attendees learn about dribble bar manure application. Photo provided by Franklin County Conservation District.

Franklin County Conservation District held a Summer Conservation Tour on August 3, 2023. Eighty-three participants attended the tour. The host farm provided first-hand accounts of best management practices, including construction and maintenance. Attendees also learned about dribble bar manure application and how it may reduce odor and manure nutrient runoff.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

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Union County Conservation District Holds Regenerative Dairy Meeting

Photo of the meeting provided by Union County Conservation District.

The Union County Conservation District held a Regenerative Dairy Meeting in Lewisburg on June 13, 2023. Dairy farmers and manure handlers were invited to attend.

The meeting intended to introduce operators to newer, regenerative practices that can mainly be implemented on dairy operations and provide the necessary resources to help get all conservation practices on the ground. There was a discussion targeted toward manure handlers and the considerations that must be accounted for before field applying manure. The meeting was approved for Certified Manure Hauler/Broker Continuing Education credits.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Butler County Conservation District Hosts CREP/BMP Field Day

Photo submitted by Butler County Conservation District.

Submitted by Butler County Conservation District

The Butler County Conservation District hosted a Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program/Best Management Practices (CREP/BMP) Field Day on July 28, 2023, at the BGN Farm owned by Jeff Grazier. Farmers interested in participating in CREP registered with the USDA Farm Service Agency for the event. This was an opportunity to learn about Jeff’s operation and the different programs and funding sources available to assist farms in Butler County. The field day was funded through the CREP Mini-grant Program for Conservation Districts. Click here for more information and to apply. 

Click here to read more. 

Financial and other support for the CREP Outreach Program Office Mini-grant Program is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a Growing Greener Watershed Protection grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and with additional support from USDA-NRCS.

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Cumberland County Conservation District Holds Rain Barrel Workshop

Photo provided by Cumberland County Conservation District.

In April, Cumberland County Conservation District held a rain barrel workshop during the Gardener’s Gathering at Lower Allen Community Park in Lower Allen Township. Twenty-two people attended the workshop. Discussion during the presentation revolved around non-point source pollution and how actions in Pennsylvania affect the Chesapeake Bay downstream.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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$80,000 Available for CREP Mini-grants!

PACD is now accepting mini-grant applications for up to $3,000 to implement educational and outreach activities that support and extend the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) work. Projects should focus on CREP enrollment, re-enrollment, and/or CREP maintenance.

Applications are being accepted and approved on a rolling basis. The deadline for final reports is extended until December 1, 2023.

Project examples:

-Walkabouts/field days
-Farmer and landowner workshops
-Riparian buffer workshops
-Workshop series with several topics
-Developing educational materials like brochures, flyers, fact sheets, or even billboards
-Hire interns to provide CREP outreach

Eligible expenses include staff wages, promotional items, mileage, postage, office supplies, room rental for workshops, food & beverages, materials, transportation, etc.

The guidelines and application for the CREP mini-grant program for conservation districts are posted here. Questions should be directed to Holly Miller at hmiller@pacd.org.

Financial and other support for the CREP Outreach Program Office Mini-grant Program is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a Growing Greener Watershed Protection grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and with additional support from USDA-NRCS.

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