The Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences announces a new website and blog which address organic vegetable weed control strategies. Learn about weed control methods including: tractor and hand-operated cultivating tools; backpack sprayers for applying organic herbicides; backpack mounted weed flamers; organic and plastic mulching techniques; overview of weed biology and weed seed farming issues; weed control planning ahead strategies including stale seedbed, continuous tillage and cover cropping. There’s also a forum for exchanging ideas, as well as links to many helpful resources. Click here to learn more.
SOMERSET, January 21, 2014 – New Jersey State Conservationist Carrie
Mosley has introduced a Soil Health Initiative, designating $400,000 of
the 2014 Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funds for the
planning and implementation of multi-species cover crop. Other practices
that support soil health, like no-till and nutrient management, are
available through the Initiative as companion practices. Agricultural
producers who are eligible for EQIP can apply for this Initiative offered
by the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).
“Producers who apply for the Initiative during the current funding period
and meet the EQIP criteria will be given priority to be funded this year,”
Mosley said. The current application period for EQIP closes February 21.
NRCS has identified four principles as useful for improving soil health:
1. Keep soil covered as much as possible.
2. Use plant diversity to increase diversity in the soil.
3. Keep living roots in the soil as long as possible.
4. Disturb the soil as little as possible.
“We hope New Jersey farmers will visit their local NRCS office to learn
more about what we can offer them through EQIP and the new Soil Health
Initiative,” Mosley said. Visit the NRCS website
available in the Garden State.
The Rutgers Cooperative Extension Water Resources Program (WRP) has created a user-friendly Neshanic Watershed Boundary Map in ArcGISonline. Users can search an address to verify that it is within the Neshanic. Additionally, users can change the base map (eg. imagery, imagery with labels, streets, etc.) and measure distances. The WRP can provide potential homeowners with this map to verify their address for themselves. You can access the map at this link.
This is a great time to spruce up your indoor and outdoor living space. Back to Nature Home and Garden offers great solutions in landscaping and decor! When you purchase goods and services from Back to Nature, you’ll get a 10% discount for mentioning NJRC&D, AND they’ll donate 5.5% of your purchase right back to NJRC&D to help us continue our great work.
Thinking about doing a landscaping project? How about installing a fire pit for those cold evenings? Maybe you’d like help selecting deer-resistant plants. Back to Nature has great solutions, and the best gifts for nature lovers. Be sure to visit Back to Nature Home and Garden and mention NJRC&D to get your discount and help us fund some terrific projects!
The River-Friendly Farm Program is a voluntary certification program designed to recognize farms that protect our shared natural resources through responsible management. Today, progressive farmers recognize that environmental excellence is part of a sustainable operation; management practices of today impact the viability of their business in the future. Whether located on five or 500 acres, farms that manage their land while protecting the soil and water around them are an asset to the larger community.
The River-Friendly Farm Program recognizes farmers who take leadership roles as environmental stewards. Once the applicant farm meets the criteria for this certification, the producer may use the River-Friendly label as a marketing tool to reach environmentally conscientious customers and raise awareness of local water quality issues.
Currently, farms in the Raritan River Basin are eligible to apply for the voluntary certification. North Jersey RC&D works with each individual applicant to plan, find funding, and implement practices that help protect and enhance water quality in the Raritan River Basin, which provides drinking water for 1.5 million people.