Crop Programs

Soil Health

Soil is a living and life-giving substance, without which we would perish.  As world population and food production demands rise, keeping our soil healthy and productive is of paramount importance. So much so that we believe improving the health of our Nation’s soil is one of the most important endeavors of our time.

By focusing more attention on soil health and by educating our customers and the public about the positive impact healthy soils can have on productivity and conservation, we can help our Nation’s farmers feed the world more profitably and sustainably – now and for generations to come.

Conservation happens on individual farms.  Each farm has different characteristics, making it necessary to create an individualized conservation plan.  Orange County SWCD works closely with NRCS to create these plans. Financial assistance is available through several programs to assist with your various conservation needs. Practices such as cover crops, conversion to no-till, nutrient management, pest management, grassed waterways and much more are available. Give us a call or stop by the office to discuss your conservation needs.

You can also learn more about soil health with the NRCS Unlock the Secrets of the Soil campaign at

Cover Crops

Cover crops are an effective tool to reduce soil erosion and increase nutrient recycling to farmlands, thereby also decreasing the soil and nutrient loads entering ditches and waterways, trapping nitrogen that would otherwise leach away. Cover crops can have numerous other benefits, including the improvement of soil quality by building soil organic matter, weed control, pest management, fertility management, water availability and agricultural landscape diversification.

Orange County SWCD offers producers multiple options for cover crop cost share programs, including the Lost River Watershed 319 Grant and assisting producers with becoming eligible for federal Farm Bill programs, like EQIP. Give us a call or stop by the office to discuss your conservation needs.