What were RCDs up to in October?

California is home to 98 unique RCDs operating in ten regions throughout the state. RCDs are California’s boots-on-ground, providing everything from technical assistance to design and installation of conservation projects to community education — and more. Each month, we work to compile a small sampling of the incredible work that the districts are doing in and on behalf of their communities. Please see below for an update on what some of the state’s RCDs were up to in October.

Soil Health and Cover Crop Workshop with Sutter County RCD

Sutter County RCD hosted a workshop on soil health and cover cropping on October 11 in Yuba City with topics including “Using Cover Crops as a Tool”, “Equipment Basics and Calibration Demonstration”, and “Cover Cropping Opportunities.” Presentations were given by a local landowner and NRCS staff, and a Punjabi interpreter was present.

Antelope Valley RCD’s First Annual Fall Festival

Antelope Valley RCD celebrated fall with its first Fall Festival on October 27 & 28 at its nursery in Lancaster. The event was free and family friendly, and included hot air balloon rides, a petting zoo, activities for kids, pumpkins and more!

A busy time for the RCD of Greater San Diego County

RCD of Greater San Diego County launched its new website in October! Also, please save the date for RCDGSDC’s Fourth Annual Soil Shindig. This is family friendly, no-cost, day-long celebration of soil held at the Tijuana River Valley Community Garden and Wild Willow Farm & Education Center (a quarter-mile apart) on Saturday, November 17, 1pm to 6pm.

The RCD launched its carbon farming demonstration project  earlier this summer on a quarter-acre plot at the Tijuana River Valley Community Garden. This project, funded by the CA Department of Food and Agriculture, will implement three carbon farming practices and aim to demonstrate the benefits to soil quality, water holding capacity, and crop yield. Join them to learn more about carbon farming and this demonstration project at their kick-off event on November 17, from 1 – 3pm. This event takes place before their Soil Shindig (see above), but will have technical information which is more relevant for farmers, growers, and agricultural support professionals.

San Mateo RCD featured in Half Moon Bay Review

The Half Moon Bay Review’s article “Carbon Farming Bears Different Fruit” throws a spotlight on San Mateo RCD’s impressive work creating carbon framing plans with landowners.

Mendocino County RCD featured in Fort Bragg Advocate News

MCRCD’s role in fire prevention and recovery is highlighted in an article about a community showing of “Wilder Than Wild”, a documentary about the Rim Fire that burned 257,000 acres in and around Yosemite in 2013. Mary Mayeda, forester, represented the Mendocino County Resource Conservation District at a Q&A panel after the showing, and among many topics spoke about the important role that fire safe councils can play in prevention and recovery.

Yolo County RCD plans “Lunch and Learn on the Farm”

Lunch and Learn on the Farm will be a free event which includes lunch and talks on the CDFA Healthy Soils Incentive Program, Central Valley Habitat Exchange, Fish Food on the Floodplain project, and a tour of River Garden Farms’ conservation practices. Join Yolo County RCD on Friday, December 7, 12 – 4pm at River Garden Farms in Knights Landing. You can RSVP here.

Marin RCD and the Marin Carbon Project

The Department of Conservation hosted a presentation on carbon farming and the Marin Carbon Project as part of their Ag Talk Series on Tuesday, October 30. Marin Carbon Project cofounders Nancy Scolari (Executive Director of Marin RCD), Jeffrey Creque (Carbon Cycle Institute), and Jeff Stump, a member of the MCP Steering Committee, presented during this event.

Napa Climate Champion Award to Napa County RCD

Napa Climate NOW! announced Napa County RCD as one recipient of its Napa Climate Champion Awards. The local non-profit is a citizens organization advocating for smart climate solutions based on the latest climate science. Napa County RCD was recognized for its leadership in soil conservation, reforestation, and carbon sequestration, helping to raise the visibility of RCDs as entities actively putting into practice conservation best practices.

Western Shasta RCD Recognized for Erosion Control in Post-Fire Areas

Western Shasta RCD was featured in the Redding Record Searchlight for working with the California Regional Water Quality Control Board to install erosion control measures on 1,640 acres within the Carr Fire burn area. Above average rainfall is predicted and a fast response to the issue is crucial to prevent additional debis from the fire to wash into waterways. “Crews with the Western Shasta Resource Conservation District will be placing various erosion control methods on hillsides, such as straw wattles and mats, mulching and “tackifiers” to make the ground stickier.”

El Dorado County RCD Helps Make Tree Seedlings Available to the Public

For the past several years, the El Dorado County RCD has worked with CAL FIRE and the U.S. Forest Service Placerville Nursery to provide native seedlings to help with reforestation efforts in the region. Please see this memo for details of availability and additional information. There are currently 6,500 Douglas-fir and sugar pine seedlings that will be ready for planting in the spring of 2019. These seedlings are part of a speculative order that was intended to help landowners recover from the 2017 wildfires in the Napa/Sonoma area and to help landowners in the Southern Sierra impacted from bark beetle mortality. Southern Sierra and Napa/Sonoma landowners may reserve seedlings now for 2019 Spring planting. For all other seed zones the deadline to place orders for Spring 2020 seedlings is December 1, 2018. Please contact Mark Egbert, District Manager of the El Dorado County RCD, for further information.

Glenn County RCD Debuts Soil Health Videos

Visit Glenn County RCD’s YouTube Channel to see their new videos on soil health, produced as part of their CARCD Community Outreach Grant. The series of three short 5-minute films promote best soil health management practices on a ranch, an orchard, and a dairy.

East Merced RCD Honored at Luncheon for ‘Excellence in Business’

East Merced RCD was one of six Merced County businesses and organizations that were honored at the Merced Sun-Star’s 4th annual Excellence in Business competition. “The Merced Sun-Star is honored to shine a light on these exceptional organizations,” Ken Riddick, president and publisher of the Sun-Star, said. “It’s truly impressive to see the work that they are doing to make greater Merced and Merced County a better place.” East Merced RCD was presented with an award at the luncheon on October 24 in the Agribusiness category.

Sonoma RCD to host Range Tailgate in Petaluma on November 8

Sonoma RCD is currently working on the implementation of a carbon farm plan through funding from the California Department of Food & Agriculture’s Healthy Soils Program. Partnering with the Sonoma Mountain Institute they are developing a demonstration project to assess the effects of compost application on a working rangeland. After initial soil samples were collected in spring 2018 they’ve recently applied compost to over 50 acres of rangeland. Join them on the ranch for the first in a series of workshops on this property to observe the effects of compost application over time. Please RSVP here and visit their event website for the latest details. If you have any questions please contact the project manager, Kari Wester, at kwester@sonomarcd.org.