On the Farm

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Mar 01

Farm Program Work Shifts to Focused Sub Watershed Approach

Posted on March 1, 2018 at 10:06 AM by Allan Warren

Farm SubwatershedsTo bring focus to our farm program’s work and to have a deeper impact on what matters most – our mission of protecting natural resources in Pierce County, the District’s farm program will be prioritizing its efforts in nine sub-watersheds in Pierce County for the remainder of the strategic plan horizon, through 2020. We conducted a nearly year-long prioritization process to align the farm program’s work with our 5-year strategic plan developed in 2016, and to make noticeable natural resource conservation improvements. These sub watersheds are: Murray Creek, South (Muck) Creek, Fennel Creek, Clover Creek, Puyallup River, South Prairie Creek, White River, and Carr and Case Inlet on the Key Peninsula.

What this will mean in regard to landowner assistance, is that we will do focused outreach and direct 80% of our farm program technical assistance in these priority areas; hold all of our farm tours and workshops in these areas; and we will direct 80% or more of our landowner financial assistance (cost share) to implement natural resource protection projects in these areas.

If you do not live in one of these focused areas, you will still receive farm consultation assistance over the phone and via email, and we will be able to conduct a farm visit or take a ‘first one’s free’ soil sample of your commercial crop or pasture/hay field if there is a critical area such a stream, ditch, or wetland on, or directly adjacent to your property. You will also be eligible to apply for cost share assistance to improve the water quality of those critical areas with the implementation of best management practices. And you of course will be able to attend any of our farm tours and workshops and will be able to take advantage of our farm tool loan and rental programs.

At the conclusion of this focus period in 2020, we hope to see marked improvement in water quality in these target areas, and at that time we will re-evaluate this approach and/or determine if there are different sub watersheds that we need to focus our efforts on.