Erosion control, reduction in nitrate and phosphorus loss, nitrogen fixation and scavenging, weed suppression, and soil quality improvement are all among the benefits of planting cover crops. Through a state funded Clean Water Indiana Grant, the Washington County Soil and Water Conservation District is administering a cost share program for landowners to apply for cover crops for 2014. The cost share rate will be $20 per acre for up to 25 acres for new applicants and $10 per acre for up to 50 acres for applicants who have participated in a Clean Water Indiana grant within the past 5 years. To be eligible the land must be located in Washington county, land cannot be contracted with any other government programs, cover crop seeding must be completed by November 15, 2014, and cover crops cannot be harvested for grain. Applications will be awarded on a first come first served basis until 2014 funds are exhausted. Also, NRCS standards and specifications for seeding and grazing of the cover crop must be followed.
Those interested should contact Jessica Hoehn, Washington County Soil and Water Technician, at (812)883-3006 ext. 3 or firstname.lastname@example.org to set up an appointment to meet at the Soil and Water Conservation District office at 801 Anson Street in Salem.