LIMA — The Allen Soil and Water Conservation District is conducting a sign-up with Allen County farmers interested in receiving cost share funding for establishing cover crops, controlled drainage structures, and blind tile inlets.
All these practices are effective in reducing nutrient or fertilizer loading to local streams and all the way to Lake Erie. The Ohio Dept of Natural Resources, Division of Soil and Water Conservation has budgeted $625,000 to this program and targeted it for 27 counties in northwest Ohio.
“Crop production claims over 80 percent of our land use in this region. Farmers in the Grand Lake watershed have been made to develop and implement conservation plans with best management practices that are effectively keeping soil and fertilizer on the fields and out of the streams and lake. The recent Toledo drinking water scare also resulted in agriculture being largely blamed for the excessive algae issues,” said Allen SWCD Watershed and Stormwater Programs Coordinator Beth Seibert.
Interested farmers are asked to call their local SWCD office and set up an appointment to discuss the applicability of these practices and funds to their individual operations. Sign-up for these cost-share funds will be conducted until depletion or Oct. 15, whichever comes first. Allen, Auglaize, Van Wert, Putnam, Hancock, Hardin and Mercer counties have each been allotted $50,000.
The Allen SWCD office is located at 1601 E. Fourth St. For more information, call 419-223-0040, ext. 3.