Armstrong Conservation District Holds Stormwater Management Workshop

A stormwater workshop was held in October at the Armstrong Conservation District. Photo provided by Armstrong Conservation District.

On October 28, 2019, the Armstrong Conservation District held a stormwater workshop. Thirty-five attendees attended the workshop. As part of the project, the district distributed thirty-two rain barrels, produced a stormwater sign, and created a rain barrel demonstration area at the conservation district office.

This project was funded by a PA Department of Environmental Protection environmental education grant and a Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Mini-grant through PACD.

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 Awards Grant for Urban Heat Island Tree Planting

Photo provided by Lehigh County Conservation District.

Reprinted with permission from Lehigh County Conservation District’s Winter 2019 newsletter

According to a New York Times article written on August 9, 2019, temperatures in a city can span a range of as much as 20 degrees depending upon one’s location. Students from Building 21 Public High School in Allentown have been working on finding solutions to this “hot topic” known as urban heat islands, for the last two years!

Student Maribel Rabio proposed planting three large groups of flowering trees to add shade and natural beauty to her school’s parking areas. After volunteering to help students with the first phase of Maribel’s tree plantings, several Lehigh County Conservation District (LCCD) staff members encouraged the school to apply to the district’s grant program for funding of phase two.

Upon LCCD board approval for a $2,000 grant, Building 21’s Urban Agriculture Class, Allentown Department of Public Works, and City Arborist Rick Howell worked together in October to carry out stage two of the project. On this day, six native redbuds and five native dogwoods joined Building 21’s ever-growing and greening landscape and brought Maribel’s great idea one step closer to completion.

Click here to read the entire article and here to watch a local news clip about the project. 

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The Work-Free Zone (Garden)

Photo provided by BCCD.

By: Kevin Brown, Ag. Resource Specialist, Bradford County Conservation District

Yes, that’s what I said, a garden that takes no work. This is a picture of our garden here at the office. I mulched it, planted it, spent maybe 15 minutes (total) weeding it at different times, and am now harvesting it. I know there are a lot of non-believers out there. My wife said it wouldn’t work. My co-workers said it wouldn’t work and wanted to know who was going to be the one spending the time needed to weed and water it. My response was, “If it works the way it’s supposed to, no one.” Even my mother said that when she read the first gardening article I wrote, “I couldn’t believe your name was associated with it. You never wanted anything to do with a garden.” And she’s right. I still don’t. But voilà! Here we are. I can handle a garden if I don’t have to do anything to make it a garden. Doesn’t everyone like to have super fresh vegetables if all they have to do is pick them? Well, you can.

Click here to read the entire article and here to read a news piece on the project. 

This workshop is part of the Bradford County Education & Outreach Mini-grant Project.

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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Shambaugh Visits Adams County

(Left to right) Front Row: PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh, ACCD Director David Benner, ACCD Director Ed Wilkinson, ACCD Director Jim Martin, ACCD Director Barbara Underwood. Back Row: ACCD Director Michelle Kirk, ACCD Director Carl Keller Jr., ACCD District Manager Adam McClain, and ACCD Director Charles Bennett.

PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh traveled to Adams County Conservation District (ACCD) on December 19, 2019, to attend their annual planning session and board meeting. The district first held a 2019 year in review session and a planning session for 2020. Partners (including PACD) and legislators were invited to participate. The regular board meeting followed this session.

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Cumberland County Conservation District Holds Corn Planter Clinic

On December 18, 2019, the Cumberland County Conservation District and Cumberland Planter held their 9th Annual Corn Planter Clinic at the Shippensburg Auction Center. Topics included: The Foundations for a Better Yield, Considerations for Soil Health Fertility and Nutrient Management in No-Till Production, and No-Till Drill Preventative Maintenance. The clinic was well attended with 180 farmers, all there to gain valuable information before the spring 2020 crop year begins.

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Pike County Conservation District Hosts Podcast

Pike County Conservation District has a podcast called The Conservation Cast for Pike County residents that want to learn more about our environment.

The first episode is on watersheds and is available now. The second episode will be released on January 8 and focuses on water quality for homeowners. Click here to listen! 

Financial and other support for The Conservation Cast has been provided by the Department of Environmental Protection’s 2019 Environmental Education Grants Program.

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Berks County Conservation District Holds Community Tree Planting Event

Community tree planting coordinated by the Berks County Conservation District. Photo provided by BCCD.

The Berks County Conservation District (BCCD) was awarded a $2,500 grant through the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) Outreach Program Office (administered by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts).

The grant funds were used to hold a community tree planting event on November 9, 2019. At the event, 20 volunteers helped to plant 130 trees on 0.6 acres. As part of the event, BCCD staff provided education on how to plant a forested riparian buffer, the environmental benefits, financial programs available, and required maintenance for the buffers to succeed.

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.

Click here to read the entire article.

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Pike County Conservation District Completes Bioswale Project

Photo provided by the Pike County Conservation District.

In August, the Pike County Conservation District refurbished a bioswale on the district’s property as part of their Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-grant Project. The bioswale filters and slows down the movement of stormwater runoff. (What is the difference between the bioswale and a rain garden? Click here to find out.)

An educational sign was installed to teach the public how the bioswale functions and the positive effect this type of installment can have on local water resources. The district plans to use the site as a demonstration area for future educational programs.

The sign is available on the Educational Events Sample Materials page on the PACD website. Click here to view the sample materials from previously funded mini-grant projects. Districts are encouraged to use these materials for their own activities rather than starting from scratch.

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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First Project Completed through Multi-functional Riparian Buffer Sub-Grant Program

Indiana County Conservation District (ICCD) completed its first multi-functional riparian buffer planting in the headwaters of Aultman’s Run watershed this year. ICCD staff partnered with Western Pennsylvania Conservancy and volunteers from Pennsylvania Senior Environmental Corps to plant 1.2 acres of riparian trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.

ICCD developed a site-specific planting plan for the property that accounted for property use, hydrology, soil, and utility rights-of-way. With approval from the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, ICCD was able to utilize $2,502 in PACD Multi-functional Riparian Buffer funds to make it happen.

Click here to learn more about the Multi-functional Riparian Buffer Sub-Grant Program.

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 Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Recreation and Conservation.

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York County Conservation District Completes Low Volume Road Project

Before and after photos provided by York County Conservation District.

The York County Conservation District completed a low volume road project in Wrightsville Borough. The cost of the project through the Dirt, Gravel, and Low Volume Roads Program was $37,280.

The project started as an alley that caused runoff and flooding of nearby homes. The district installed 650 feet of concrete wheel pads, pervious pavers, and subsurface stone storage. Now, the stored rainwater seeps into the subsoil, and excess runoff drains to the storm sewer.

Click here to watch a video titled, “What is a Green Alley?” 

Click here to view a local news story on the project.

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