Jeff Boike took home top honors at this years’ 76th Annual Meeting by being named the 2018 Cooperator of the year by the Highland SWCD supervisors and staff. Boike was selected due to his devotion to agricultural and the determination to improve soil health and water quality throughout his farming operation. He served 12 outstanding years as an SWCD Supervisor and has helped with the installation of various conservation practices throughout Highland County. Boike is a well-respected leader in the agricultural industry and serves as an example of how to incorporate best management practices that will protect our natural resources.
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Cover Crop Field Day Planned
The Highland SWCD and the Highland County Farm Bureau have partnered together to host a field day to uncover the importance of planting cover crops. The event is scheduled for August 21, 2019 from 9:30am-4pm at Brown Farms in Highland County. Information will be provided on fertilizer recommendations, the importance of improving soil health and a tour of a cover crop plot. Various events will be held throughout the day, such as in-field and an aerial seeding demonstrations. This field day will offer a unique on-site opportunity for landowners to carefully consider all cover crop options that can be implemented to advance their farming operation while capturing nutrients for a long-term investment. This field day will offer CCA Credits for Certified Crop Advisors and has a great line-up of cover crop door prize donations. Lunch will be provided with pre-registration by Aug 14. For a detailed flyer and to register, click on the events tab or call the Highland SWCD office at 937-393-1922 Ext.3
2019 Highland County Farm Tour
The 6th Annual Highland County Farm Tour co-hosted by the Highland County Farm Bureau and the Highland Soil and Water Conservation District will be held on September 14, 2019 from 10am – 3pm. This year the tour will highlight farms in the Fairview area that will feature updated technology from the steel roofing and siding specialists at Higgins, learn how to manage a bee hive from the Stroud Family, and visit a beautiful pond site at the Burchwell farm to learn important pond management skills. The goal of this collorabitive event is to provide opportunities for the community to learn new advanced techniques and interact with others. It will be an educational day to see how others have incorporated unique projects to sustain their operation. Lunch will be provided during the Tour with pre-registration.
Southwest Ohio Agricultural Conservation Menu
The Soil and Water Conservation Districts in Brown, Clermont, Clinton and Highland counties are working together to collect producer input to develop a new website, the Southwest Ohio Agricultural Conservation Menu (SOACM), to share information on conservation programs and technical services that are available locally to advance farming practices. The SOACM website will be a one-stop clearinghouse for all conservation programs. The site will include information and regular updates on watershed health and local water quality monitoring efforts. The intent of the SOACM website is to provide local farmers with the services and information they need to choose the right agricultural Best Management Practices (BMPs) that can advance their farming operations and provide protection for local rivers and lakes. Focus group meetings will be held in the spring to prioritize public input on the needed content of the website. The site will also include additional features, including access to locally-developed resources and interactive modules to facilitate information sharing between landowners and producers. The final version of SOACM is planned to be launched near the end of the year, so stay tuned!
WARM SEASON GRASS GRAZING WORKSHOP
An informational grazing workshop was held at the Millstone Creek Farm on July 16, 2019 located at 9061 Grabill Road in Hillsboro, OH. This was a collorabitive event hosted by the Highland Soil and Water Conservation District, the Ohio Department of Agriculture, USDA NRCS, the Ohio State University Extension and the ODNR, Division of Wildlife to provide opportunities for farmers to learn new advanced grazing techniques. Topics of discussion included; Pasture Management, Animal Performance and Economics, Warm Season Grass Pastures, Warm-Season Annuals and Cover Crop Options, and a pasture walk of the Millstone Creek Farm Operation. A delicious dinner was provided by the Highland County Cattlemen Association and Union Stockyards. The educational evening offered the opportunity to see first-hand how the farm converted fescue to perennial native grasses, to allow a unique grazing technique that will increase water quality, improve soil health, and provide wildlife habitat. This conversion concept is featured in the national Working Lands for Wildlife (WLFW) project through USDA, NRCS that will assist eligible livestock producers to implement conservation practices to address habitat loss without taking their land out of production. If you would like more information on the WLFW program you may contact the NRCS or SWCD office at 937-393-1922 x 3.
Walker Named The District Conservationist
Delwyn (Lee) Walker was recently named the District Conservationist for the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) for Highland and Adams County on January 7, 2019. Lee grew up in Greenfield, OH and began his career with NRCS by being an Earth Team Volunteer in Ross County in 2005. He then worked as a Student WAE at the Highland NRCS office for a couple of years, until he was hired on with NRCS as a Soil Conservationist in the Fall of 2007 and accepted a position in Auglaize County. Lee spent two years working in Auglaize County and then was transferred to Mercer County, where he worked two more years. He was then named the Resource Conservationist for NRCS in Adams/Highland County where he has spent the past six years. Lee and his wife Dorothy have two children, Addy and Lukas and he has enjoyed being able to settle down close to where he grew up. Lee is excited to serve at the District Conservationist and begin a new chapter in his life. He has worked on a wide variety of projects and is passionate about his job. Feel free to give Lee a call or stop by the office to discuss your conservation needs.
All Highland Soil and Water Conservation District programs and services are offered on a non-discriminatory basis without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital or family status.