The Shenandoah Valley Soil & Water Conservation District’s Mission is to Promote Stewardship and Conservation of our Natural Resources
The Shenandoah Valley Soil and Water Conservation District was founded in 1940 and is one of the 47 Virginia Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts. The Shenandoah Valley Soil and Water Conservation District serves Rockingham and Page counties as well as the city of Harrisonburg. There are a variety of conservation programs available to farmers, businesses, and landowners.
These conservation programs provide both technical and financial assistance for the installation of best management practices that can have a direct benefit to soil, water, air, plant, and animal resources as well as to you and your production. Funding is provided by local, state, and federal sources. Conservation programs are carried out by district staff and are governed by the Board of Directors. There are monthly board meetings that are open to the public.
Reducing Input Costs with Cover Crops
Sustainable Chesapeake and Virginia Soil Health Coalition Partners are pleased to announce the release of four videos focused on how cover crops (a high priority conservation practice for Chesapeake Bay restoration) can save farmers money by improving yields, reducing input costs, improving drought resilience, and preventing weeds. Cover crops are an integral approach for improved soil health and water quality. Soil health is defined as the continued capacity of soil to function as a vital living ecosystem that sustains plants, animals, and humans.
Click on the links below to access these informational videos:
- Cover Crops for Boosting Yields
- Cover Crops for Fighting Drought and Weeds
- Cover Crops for Growing Nutrients and Cutting Costs
- Cover Crops for Future Generations
Virginia Home Grown Episode on Flood Control Dams
Megen Dalton, SVSWCD District Manager and Cory Guilliams, NRCS District Conservationist were recently featured on the June 28, 2022 televised segment of “Virginia Home Grown” that was aired on PBS. Click on this link to watch the full episode.
VA Dept. of Tax 2021 Updates
Producers interested in claiming credits with the Virginia Department of Taxation on their 2021 tax returns (or beyond) should watch this YouTube video prepared by the Virginia Department of Conservation & Recreation (DCR.)
2022 Winter Cover Crop Beds
About our Cover Crop Beds: The SVSWCD has sixteen demonstration beds located in front of our office. These beds are planted in the Fall and then again in the Spring to allow producers and other constituents that visit our office the opportunity to see various cover crops and other vegetation. The beds have been planted in various cover crop mixes, peanuts, tomatoes, sunflowers and much more. Sunny Ridge Seed has donated seeds for the past several years and a Pure Water Forum grant provided funds for the initial bed installation. To learn more about cover crops, follow this link.
Programs, Grants and Other Opportunities!!
- Tree Planting Tools for Loan: If you are planting trees this fall and upcoming spring and need to loan out tree planting tools, click this link to complete the reservation form for the tools you need!
- Rain Barrels: We have rain barrels back in stock! Check out the rain barrel page to learn more about purchasing a barrel or two, or stay tuned for info on any upcoming rain barrel workshops!
- Pure Water Forum Small Grant Opportunities: The SVSWCD is a member of the Pure Water Forum, which has small grants available for innovative stewardship projects, research, and education initiatives dedicated to the restoration and protection of the Shenandoah River and its tributaries. You can find more info and apply here.
Interesting Articles & Videos:
“Past, Present and Future of Conservation Districts” Video
Watch this short 10 minute video about Conservation Districts and what we do!
“Backyard Environmental Education”
Check out this article.. It’s great for young students who are passionate about learning more about our environment!
Hammond Bennett Documentary
Watch the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) documentary on soil conservation pioneer Hugh Hammond Bennett, the history of our agency and the birth of the private lands conservation movement in the U.S.
Want to learn more about the District will be doing over the next few years? Read our Strategic Plan. Also – check out the July 2021-June 2022 Annual Report to get an overview of what the Shenandoah Valley Soil & Water Conservation District did last year!