Grass waterways – thinking ahead …

By Ryan Evers - Soil and Water Conservation

This is a great time of the year to consider where you may need grassed waterways. Although they can be inconvenient to farm around, they are very effective in saving the soil on your farm. As you are harvesting your fields this fall look for small gullies and erosion control issues. This well-known practice is installed to repair small gullies in crop fields, and manage the flow of rainfall runoff. Grassed waterways are typically 30 to 50 feet wide, are designed to be crossed by farm equipment, and typically include installation of a tile which helps keep the waterway dry. The continuous signup portion of the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), administered by USDA-Farm Service Agency, is a particularly attractive program for assisting landowners with the installation of waterways.

Best way to plan for a grassed waterway next year is to plant the field to wheat this fall, since the construction can occur after wheat harvest and still allow time for the grass seeding to get established. Waterways can also be constructed in the spring. Ideal conditions allow for installation of the tile in the fall and construct the waterway the following spring or summer. The district needs time to investigate, survey and design the waterway, so don’t wait to sign up, the best time to install is shortly after wheat harvest. Once your grassed waterway is installed it is important to maintain it in order for it to do its job.

If you have an eroded area (gully), contact the office to setup a site visit. The SWCD personnel will determine if the site is eligible and explain the program to you. One extremely crucial factor is that waterways take several months from start to finish, so contact us in advance.

If you are interested in learning more about sod waterways or any other conservation program, contact Ryan Evers at Shelby SWCD at 937-492-6520 ext. 2591. For program details, eligibility and cost share rates contact FSA at 937-492-6520, ext. 2

Thank you to all who have thought about and implemented conservation measures on the land. Conservation efforts would not be where they are at the present day without the people right here in Shelby County willingly signing up for these programs. This shows devotion and a desire for continued water quality for a cleaner tomorrow.

2018 fingerling sale – fish for your pond

The Shelby Soil and Water Conservation District is holding its annual fish sale. If you have been fishing your pond regularly or if you have recently constructed a new pond, fall is a good time to stock it. Orders forms can be picked up at the SWCD office at 822 Fair Road, Sidney, on our website at, or on our Facebook page under Shelby Soil & Water Conservation District. Orders must be received in our office by noon on Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2018.

Forestry Field Day 2018

Mark your calendars for our Annual Forestry Field Day, which will be held on Sunday, Oct. 21, from 1 to 4:00 p.m. The event will be at Dennis Ziegenbusch’s property at 5582 State Route 705, Fort Loramie. More information will be available as the event gets closer.

By Ryan Evers

Soil and Water Conservation

The writer is a district technician for the Shelby Soil & Water Conservation District.

The writer is a district technician for the Shelby Soil & Water Conservation District.