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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Bradford County Farmers Receive PA Leopold Conservation Award

Rebecca and Dean Jackson of Mt-Glen Farms receive the Leopold Award. Photo used with permission from Liam Migdail, PA Farm Bureau.

On January 10, Dean & Rebecca Jackson Of Mt-Glen Farms in Columbia Cross Roads (Bradford County) were presented with the PA Leopold Conservation Award.  This third-generation dairy farm is a leader in conservation. Click here to read more about the operation. 

PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh attended the awards presentation, which was held during the PA Farm Show in Harrisburg.

Click here to read more about the award presentation.

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$60,000 Available for 2020-21 Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-grant Program for Conservation Districts

Thanks to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection continuing to support conservation district educational projects, PACD is ready to open a new round of Nonpoint Source (NPS) Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-grants!

Grants up to $2,000 are awarded to conservation districts for adult educational projects that offer strategies for reducing and preventing NPS Pollution. Projects should stimulate a local awareness of water quality issues, promote the theme “We All Live Downstream,” and encourage citizen participation in activities to improve water quality in local watersheds.

The deadline for NPS mini-grant applications is March 2, 2020. Click here for the online application and more information. Questions should be directed to Shannon Wehinger

Financial and other support for the NPS Mini-grant Program 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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Save the Date for Streambank Protection Course

PACD is hosting a two-day short course on Fluvial Geomorphology and Natural Channel Design Indices and Stream Restoration/Rehabilitation and Streambank Protection. The course will be held on March 24 and 25 at the Clinton County Conservation District. Please add this meeting to your calendar.

Registration and a draft agenda will be shared soon. Questions? Contact Amy Brown at abrown@pacd.org.

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Thank You Farm Show Volunteers!

The “Compost, recycle, or trash” corn hole game made its debut at the conservation district booth during the 2020 PA Farm Show.

Thank you to all the volunteers who made the conservation district booth at the PA Farm Show a success! The 2020 show premiered the “Compost, recycle, or trash” corn hole game, which drew in visitors to the booth.

Thank you to the following conservation districts represented by volunteers:

Berks
Chester
Cumberland
Dauphin
Franklin
Indiana
Juniata
Lebanon
Perry
Pike
Schuylkill
Union
Venango

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‘Briefing on the Bay’ Held during 2020 PA Farm Show

The state Senate Environmental Resources & Energy Committee and the state Chesapeake Bay Commission Delegation held a discussion on January 8, 2020, on Pennsylvania’s efforts to curb Chesapeake Bay pollution. PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh attended the session which was held at the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg.

Individuals offering comments included: Ann P. Swanson, Executive Director, Chesapeake Bay Commission; Secretary Russell Redding, Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture; Secretary Patrick McDonnell, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection; Karl Brown, Executive Secretary, Pennsylvania State Conservation Commission; David Graybill, Board Member, Pennsylvania Farm Bureau; and Bill Chain, Senior Agriculture Program Manager, Chesapeake Bay Foundation.

A recording of the hearing is posted on the Committee website at https://environmental.pasenategop.com/010820/.

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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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