Your Source for Natural Resource Conservation & Land Management Practices Assistance, Plans and Education

We’re here to serve Marion County residents with information and assistance on conservation planning, invasive weeds, native plants, urban conservation, backyard habitats, livestock management, grant funding, wildlife, healthy woods, habitat restoration, school gardens and other projects for which they need assistance.


Committee Meetings Scheduled

The Marion SWCD Computer Ad-Hoc Committee meeting for February 2017 has been scheduled.

The Computer Ad-Hoc Committee will meet from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Feb. 21, in the Multnomah Falls Conference Room at the district’s offices located at 338 Hawthorne NE, 97301.

View the Computer Ad-Hoc Committee agenda here, Ad-Hoc Computer Committee Agenda – February 21, 2017

For more information about the district or board meetings, call (503) 391-9927 or send email to office@marionswcd.net.


Succession Planning Workshop Series Continues Feb. 28

Succession planning for farm, ranch and working lands is a valuable practice that provides clarity, direction and accountability to families for land and business transitions. By creating a succession plan, a family’s vision and intentions for their land can be addressed and implemented purposefully. Join us for this workshop series to learn more about succession planning and leaving a legacy for your family.

Succession Planning

  • Tuesday, Feb. 28 First Session will begin at 9 a.m. and last until noon and the second session will begin at 1 and run till 4 p.m.
  • Chemekata Eola Viticulture Center, 215 Doaks Ferry Rd, Salem – Ron Marek & Alan Lanker, attorneys, will provide an introduction to estate planning strategies, state & federal tax issues, Oregon Natural Resource Credit, structuring ownership & assets, and record keeping. Claire Fiegener from Greenbelt Land Trust will address Conservation Easements and how they can be used as a tool in estate planning.
  • Lunch Provided with Registration
  • Second Session – Carl Sohn, with NW Farm Credit Services, will expand on the first workshop and present a more in depth look at family business basics and building a foundation for succession planning focusing on family business topics. Riley Makin, attorney, will provide an introduction to estate planning specifically addressing estate planning issues for farm and ranch landowners.

Design Your Succession Plan:
Transition; Farming; Agriculture; Ranching; Forestry; Family; Business; Estate and Retirement

Cost for full Series:

  • $50 per family (up to 5 people)
  • Attend all events for this cost, or choose ones you prefer to attend
  • Cost includes Planning Workbook and food

To register visit: www.polkswcd.com

For more information contact: Karin Stutzman, District Manager
Polk SWCD by email at manager@polkswcd.com or call: (503) 623-9680 x110.

Native Plant Sale Slated For March

The 15th Annual Marion SWCD Native Plant Sale Scholarship Fundraiser will be held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, March 10, at Bauman’s Farm and Garden, 12989 Howell Prairie Road, Gervais Ore., 97026. Overstock will be sold from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, March 11, at the same location.

Marion County OSU Extension Master Gardeners will have an information booth from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday as well. Experts will be available to answer gardening questions.

The district will hold a worm bin raffle and the winner will receive a complete bin with worms. Customers may signup anytime during the sale. The winner will be notified the following week. Worm composting is an environmentally friendly way to use table scraps and make garden and landscape fertilizer.

OSU Extension is offering free well water nitrate screenings from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, March 10, and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, March 11.

For a list of plants available and their descriptions, click here Native Plant Descriptions

For a list of prices, click here 2017 Marion SWCD Native Plant Price List

For more details about the Plant Sale, click here 2017 Native Plant Sale Details

To learn more about native plants, visit our Native Plant Page, under the Heading Resources, here Native Plants

Butterfly on Showy Milkweed

Profits from the native plant sale go to fund the Stan Vistica Memorial Scholarship which is awarded yearly to two students from Marion County who are studying natural resources or agriculture at an Oregon college or university.

There will be no pre-orders. Cash, checks, credit and debit cards will be accepted. There will be no limit on the number of plants that can be purchased on Friday.

For more information about native and invasive plants and the native plant sale, contact Jenny Meisel at (503) 391-9927×312 or send email to jenny.meisel@marionswcd.net.

For more information about the scholarship contact the Office of Student Access and Completion, which administers the scholarship, at www.oregonstudentaid.gov.


ODA Chooses Abiqua Creek as Strategic Implementation Area

Abiqua Creek

The Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) has selected Abiqua Creek in Marion County as a Strategic Implementation Area (SIA), an approach to provide education and outreach to producers where necessary to address water quality concerns on agricultural lands.

Abiqua Creek is one of six SIAs to be conducted statewide in 2016-17. The others are in Clatsop, Hood River, Jackson, Tillamook and Umatilla counties.

ODA is responsible for maintaining and protecting water quality from agricultural activities.

The Agricultural Water Quality Management Area Plans and rules (sometimes referred to as Senate Bill 1010), provide a roadmap as to what agriculture should do to protect water quality.

“SIAs are conducted to highlight the good conservation work accomplished by producers and identify potential sources of pollution simultaneously,” said John Byers, manager of the Agricultural Water Quality Program. “Our goal is to ensure all producers are protecting water quality.”

ODA conducts a compliance evaluation using publically available tools such as aerial photographs, geographic information system data and personal observation from public viewpoints to identify what agricultural activities may or may not be polluting local creeks and streams.

“ODA does not go onto private property without permission,” Byers said.

The ultimate goal is to ensure that all operators in the SIA are not polluting and to get them technical assistance to improve their farming and ranching activities so as to not pollute.

Grant funding is available to help pay for conservation or restoration efforts, if needed.

ODA began conducting SIAs in 2015. Nine have been conducted so far. Abiqua Creek was selected as much conservation work has already been accomplished, and through this process “we can ensure that all of ag is protecting water quality in this watershed,” Byers said.

For more information, call ODA at (503) 986-4700.

The 2017 K-5 Grade Mural Art Contest has begun!

429 K-5 Graders will be competing in this year’s program. Working together as a team, they will learn why Forests are for People…and More than They Can Imagine! The contest requires the creation of a large 42″ x 6 ‘size art mural. that will tell a story about something learned about Forests. One winning mural will be selected from within each grade division: K-1/Beginning, 2-3/ Intermediate, 4-5/ Advanced.

Completed entries are to be submitted to the office of the Marion SWCD by 5:00 pm, April 14th. All entries received will be available for public viewing on this website and on the Facebook Page of Janice Calkins, Contest Coordinator the week of April 21st. Please check in to see some amazing artwork by our community’s kids and to pick out your most favorites entries! Winners will be determined by a select panel of judges – professionals in the Natural Resources and Forestry fields.


Join Our Manure Exchange Program and Help Conserve

Our Manure Exchange Program puts gardeners and landowners looking for free manure compost in touch with livestock owners who have excess fresh and composted manure.

Visit our Livestock program page located here under Resources for more information.


Latest Edition of the Insider

Marion SWCD Insider January 2017 Edition

To read previous issues of the Insider, visit our Newsletter Page here.


Wondering when a meeting, event or activity is happening at the district?

Check out our calendar for listings for time and dates.

Visit our “Conservation In The Newspage to read our blog and see what is happening with the district.

There you will find our newsletter, The Conservation Insider and information about upcoming classes and workshops.

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