Enrollment period for Conservation Reserve Program underway

Published 2:26 pm Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has reminded farmers and ranchers that the general enrollment period for the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is now underway and ends on Feb. 26, 2016. 

CRP is a federally funded program that assists agricultural producers with the cost of restoring, enhancing and protecting certain grasses, shrubs and trees to improve water quality, prevent soil erosion and reduce loss of wildlife habitat.

As of September 2015, 24.2 million acres were enrolled in CRP. CRP also is protecting more than 170,000 stream miles with riparian forest and grass buffers.

Participants in CRP establish long-term, resource-conserving plant species, such as approved grasses or trees (known as “covers”) to control soil erosion, improve water quality and develop wildlife habitat on marginally productive agricultural lands. In return, FSA provides participants with rental payments and cost-share assistance.

Contract duration is between 10 and 15 years. The long-term goal of the program is to re-establish native plant species on marginal agricultural lands for the primary purpose of preventing soil erosion and improving water quality and related benefits of reducing loss of wildlife habitat.

For more information on FSA conservation programs, visit a local FSA office or www.fsa.usda.gov/conservation. 

The Washington County Farm Service Agency offices are at 128 East Water Street in Plymouth, telephone 252-793-3870 ext 2.

The Tyrrell-Dare County Farm Service Agency offices are at 155 L.A. Keiser Drive in Columbia, telephone 252-796-3701 ext 2.