NRCS Tag

USDA has unveiled a new plan to help guide voluntary conservation work over the next five years across 25 states, the Northern Bobwhite, Grasslands and Savannas Framework for Conservation Action. The plan outlines how USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will work with agricultural producers and partners like Quail Forever to increase adoption of targeted conservation practices that are good for farmers, ranchers, the bobwhite, and natural resources. The plan focuses on reducing threats, improving habitat, and implementing key conservation practices, including prescribed grazing, brush management, prescribed burning, herbaceous weed treatment, forage and biomass planting, contour buffer strips, and forest...

Terranova Ranch is dedicated to producing more than 25 premium quality crops as effectively, productively, and sustainably as possible in the central San Joaquin Valley of California. Toward that end, they have implemented a wide variety of conservation and regenerative agriculture practices, including sustainable irrigation practices and conservation hedgerows. In this video, Don Cameron, General Manager and Vice President of Terranova Ranch, discusses conservation hedgerows, including their benefits and challenges, along with do's and don'ts for hedgerow design and installation. Since planting these hedgerows just two years ago, Don has seen a wide variety of positive changes at the ranch, including...

USDA is awarding $25 million for 18 new projects under the Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) On-Farm Conservation Innovation Trials program. On-Farm Trials projects support widespread adoption and evaluation of innovative conservation approaches in partnership with agricultural producers. This year's awarded projects increase the adoption of new approaches and technologies to help agricultural producers mitigate the effects of climate change, increase the resilience of their operations, and boost soil health. Descriptions of the funded projects are available online. They include topics such as irrigation efficiency, bale grazing, pollinator conservation, and regenerative egg farming....

Our NCAT Gulf States team has been working hard throughout the pandemic to provide quality technical assistance to farmers that we’re known for. Instead of meeting with farmers in-person, we shifted to virtual events. In-person on-farm workshops will always be our favorite way to teach, but we found that there are benefits to embracing the virtual platform. One significant benefit was that we were able to record these virtual workshops and share them with a national audience.
By Nina Prater, Sustainable Agriculture Specialist ...

In this episode, Jeff Schahczenski, an agricultural and natural resource economist with the National Center for Appropriate Technology, discusses working-lands conservation solutions with NCAT outreach specialist Rich Myers. Both work out of NCAT’s headquarters in Butte, Montana. In the 2018 Farm Bill, significant changes were made in the two most important federal working-lands conservation programs: USDA NRCS’s Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) and Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP). Jeff and Rich discuss the importance of these programs to farmers and ranchers in supporting a more sustainable agriculture, as well as the recently adopted NRCS Conservation Assessment and Ranking Tool (CART), which is...

In my work on NCAT’s Soil for Water Project, I’ve tried a lot of different ways of monitoring land and soil health. For years, I’ve been hearing about LandPKS (Land Potential Knowledge System), a mobile app that has been under development by the USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) since 2013. I was excited to hear that a full version was released earlier this year, and a couple weeks ago I finally got around to installing the app on my phone and running it through some tests.
By Mike Morris, Director of NCAT’s Southwest Regional Office ...

Part of my role as an NCAT Agriculture Specialist is to connect farmers to the resources that they need, so I always include USDA agencies in our Armed to Farm trainings for military veterans and other educational events we organize. The USDA has dozens of agencies and programs to help farmers—as depicted in the graphic below—but for this blog I will mention just a few.
By Margo Hale, NCAT Southeast Regional Director, Armed to Farm Program Director, and Agriculture Specialist...

Part One of the ATTRA webinar series, Understanding Access to Federal Assistance for Natural Resource Conservation on Working Lands. Farmer and ranchers will have access to billions of dollars in federal assistance through the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to maintain and undertake critical conservation efforts on their farms and ranches that benefit us all. How is access to these resources determined? This is the first webinar of a three-part series that will explore a new tool called the Conservation Assessment Ranking Tool (CART). The CART provides an efficient ranking tool to rank applications for funding consideration. The webinar series takes...

With support from the USDA, NCAT Agriculture Specialists Marisa Alcorta and Rex Dufour have helped Spanish-speaking farmers in California's Central Valley experiment with cover crops to improve soil quality and provide habitat for beneficial insects and pollinators. This video documents Elias Cosio, an almond grower from near Modesto who has been collaborating with NCAT and NRCS as he plants the first cover crop in his orchard...