Foster Creek Conservation District
Foster Creek Conservation District

Soil Health incorporates biological, chemical, and physical components that function together as one productive system. 

Healthy soil creates a fully functioning system that can provide many benefits for farming practices and the environment. By incorporating management practices that reduce the amount of disturbance to the soil, increase the amount of residue and plant cover left on the soil's surface, integrates different plant varieties, and focuses on keeping living roots within the soil, the soil's natural system will take over and beneficial organisms and processes will autormatically establish. Integrating soil health into farming management practices can increase crop productivity and profitability, creating a more sustainable farming practice for the future of your farm. Scroll to learn more about soil health in Central Washington.

The 4 Principles of Soil Health

Minimize Disturbance

Tilling soils can reduce the amount of water within the system, decrease microbial communities, and limit nutrient cycles. Limiting disturbance promotes aggregate stability and a healthy balance of, soil, air, and water.

 

 

Maximize Cover

Keeping the soil surface covered helps decrease water evaporation and soil erosion, while helping regulate the soil temperature and promote microbial communities.

 

 

Maximize Biodiversity

Incroporating different crops within a rotation, limiting fallow periods, and planting cover crops will increase the biodiversity of plants, nutrients, and mircrobial activity within that soil system.

 

 

Promote Living Roots

The longer a root is alive in the soil, the longer the soil's many components stay active.  Roots exude nutrients that microbial communities utilize to help promote an active root zone that benefits the soil and the plants.

 

 

Soil Health Spotlight

The 20s: A Decade of Soil Health in Central Washington

Learn about the new and improved direct seed and soil health program and our New Year's resloutions for the next decade! 

Follow the journey of soil health in Central Washington on Twitter

What is Direct Seeding?

Direct seeding refers to farming systems that fertilize and plant directly into undisturbed soil in one field operation, or two separate operations of fertilizing and planting. Only narrow strips of soil are disturbed by the equipment openers used to place fertilizer and seed in the soil without full width tillage. Much of the residue from the previous crop is retained on the soil surface. The reduced soil disturbance and retention of surface crop residues with direct seed systems provide improved environmental protection while maintaining or increasing soil productivity, and reducing production costs for farmers.

 

Source: Pacific Northwest Direct Seed Association (PNDSA)

 

 

 

 

Look for Direct Seed signs as you are driving around Douglas, Lincoln, Grant, and Okanogan Counties.  

Farmed Smart 

Sustainable Agriculture Certification Program

Climate change and environemntal degradation are leading to major social issues related to global food security and meeting production demands. Learn about Pacific Northwest Direct Seed Association's Farmed Smart program here. 

For more information relating to Farmed Smart Audits:   Farmed Smart Audits  or contract FCCD staff, Elizabeth Jackson or Amanda Ward, Ph: 509-888-6372.

Your form message has been successfully sent.

You have entered the following data:

Opportunities to participate in the 2018-20 Direct Seed Program are still available. If you are interested or just want to ask questions, please contact Becca at 509-699-8344 or through the form below. Your contact information will be kept confidential.

Please correct your input in the following fields:
Error while sending the form. Please try again later.

Note: Fields marked with * are required

Please be aware that the contents of this form are not encrypted
Print Print | Sitemap
Foster Creek Conservation District 203 S Rainier Waterville, WA 98858 509-888-6372 © Foster Creek CD