ISDA Division of Soil Conservation
Thank you ISDA
for giving the district the support of an employee to assist with rural projects. We
also appreciate the support staff and grants that benefit
the district and Vanderburgh County.
ISDA (Indiana State Department of
Employee, Linda Powell is Assigned to take care of the
South West County Clients in Gibson, Posey & Vanderburgh
Linda Powell, Resource Specialist
As directed by the Indiana District Law, the Division of Soil Conservation directly assists districts under the direction of the
State Soil Conservation Board. It provides assistance in
district program planning, coordination and training for district
supervisors and staff. It does so, in part, by helping them: (a)
conduct district programs in accordance with state law, (b) seek ways
to secure the administrative, managerial, educational, and technical
resources needed to carry out those programs, and (c) develop both
Business Plans (Long-Range Plans) and Annual Action Plans (Annual Plan
of Work). The division conducts training at regional sites
around the state, as well as on-site with individual districts to help
support these program functions. It also helps plan and conduct
training at the Annual Conference of SWCDs, as well as assists
districts with conducting their annual meetings, supervisor elections
and appointments, and annual financial reports.
Other key responsibilities of the Division, as outlined in the Indiana
Soil and Water Conservation District Act, include:
1. Performing all administrative duties
required by the rules of
the State Soil
2. Assisting districts and other
cooperating agencies in the
coordination, and training for adult and youth
conservation education and information
3. Providing professional soil and
water conservation technical
assistance to districts.
4. Administering the Clean Water
Indiana Program in
CONSERVATION RESERVE ENHANCEMENT PROGRAM
(CREP) Filter Strips Made Easy
Do you have any areas that could use a grassed buffer to filter
surface water runoff? How about
next to a tree line that really donít produce like you want them to
and are scratching you equipment? Perhaps you need to eliminate some
point row planting that always seems to be a pain to properly plant
and spray. The Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) will
pay you to stop hassling with these areas, reducing your farming
inputs and time in the field.
Warm-season grasses (WSG), commonly known as native prairie grass
are highly recommended for their erosion control capabilities.
Furthermore, wildlife such as upland birds appreciates the habitat.
Switchgears (Panicum virgatum), a commonly used WSG grows to a
height of 5í with roots extending about the same distance under the
ground. This massive growth creates wildlife habitat and the deep
roots provide stability to sloughing ditch banks.
Although the summer seeding dates for WSG have passed, frost
seeding is a practical option that can work into your normal crop
rotation. For instance, if you have fields scheduled for wheat this
winter, simply frost-seed into the existing crop, and do not harvest
the seeded area. Next summer, the dead wheat is excellent seedling
cover and helps to fight broadleaf infestation. The grass is quick to
outgrow the height of wheat, and any broadleaf weeds can be eliminated
by periodically using 2,4D herbicide. If wheat is not planned this
year, standing bean residue and even disturbed corn residue can be
used with this method.
Several miles of filter strips were established this year along
Hurricane Creek in Gibson County using the frost-seed into cover-crop
method. I lead a CREP tour of these filter strips for the Indiana
State Soil Conservation Board. Please contact the Soil and Water
Conservation District office at (812) 897-2840 Ext 6 if you have questions
about the Pigeon / Highland Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP),
or for seeding mixtures and dates.