Land stewardship initiative planned

From local sources

The Dubois County Soil and Water Conservation District and Vincennes University Jasper Campus seek to partner with local businesses on the community’s land stewardship initiative.

As part of the initiative, the conservation district manages 45 acres of farmland north of VUJC’s Center for Technology, Innovation and Manufacturing and east of Meridian Road. The land, owned by the university, is used to demonstrate sustainable techniques such as no-till farming and the use of cover crops, which improve soil structure and prevent soil erosion and water contamination.

The initiative is in its third year. The conservation district has invested $30,000 in installing erosion-control structures on the property. The initiative also has relied on donations, grants, and proceeds from the sale of crops grown on the land. But to move the project forward, officials are seeking sponsorships.

Mike Smith, the initiatives’s project technician, said officials aren’t just seeking financial support. He would like to see more businesses donate materials or lend their agricultural expertise. DuPont Pioneer, for example, has donated seeds for corn, soybeans and other crops, and Gypsoil has donated fertilizer.

“We want to be an organization that works with the community,” Smith said. “So wherever anyone thinks that they can possibly help, we’re open to hearing what it is.”

For more information, call the conservation district at 482-1171, ext. 3 or email

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