WHOLE FARM CONSERVATION PLANNING
The goal of conservation planning is to identify proven solutions to natural resources problems, issues, and concerns, and to apply those solutions to promote environmental sustainability and farm profitability.
Conservation Planning 101
Conservation planning is a voluntary, decision-making process. A conservation plan is a product of that process. A “Whole Farm Conservation Plan” is a plan that addresses all of the resource problems, issues, concerns, and opportunities on the farm. One does not develop such a plan after one visit with a conservation planner—conservation planning is a dynamic process, requiring sustained effort on the part of the land user and the conservation planner.
How Do I Participate?
To initiate the Whole Farm Conservation Planning process or to update your conservation plan, contact either Julie Ammel, USDA-NRCS Resource Conservationist & Cranberry Liaison or Tod Planer, WSCGA Project Coordinator.
A conservation plan identifies the practices selected by the land user to address the natural resources concerns that exist on the land. In all cases, it is the land user that selects from the alternatives presented by the conservation planner—the land user is the decision maker. Growers then work with the appropriate technical specialists to implement the conservation practices included in their plan. Technical specialists may include NRCS or private sector conservationists, technicians, or engineers. Conservation planning is an on-going activity—a conservation plan should be periodically updated and revised to reflect changes in management objectives or resource conditions.
A conservation planning workbook, entitled Conservation on Your Land, has been developed to help you document the benchmark conditions on your marsh. The completion of this workbook is optional, but it will help to give the conservation planner detailed information about your management goals and objectives, resource issues and concerns, and current management activities. Contact the WSCGA to obtain a copy of the workbook.
Tools to Help you Implement Your Plan
There are a wide variety of government and non-government conservation programs available to assist you in implementing your conservation plan. Your conservation planner will be able to help you identify the programs that may best fit your situation. For a listing of Wisconsin NRCS programs, which includes a link to other federal, state, and local conservation programs, visit the NRCS website at: Wisconsin NRCS and for information on EQIP programs visit: Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP).