New Soil Health Initiative for 2014

SOMERSET, January 21, 2014 – New Jersey State Conservationist Carrie
Mosley has introduced a Soil Health Initiative, designating $400,000 of
the 2014 Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funds for the
planning and implementation of multi-species cover crop. Other practices
that support soil health, like no-till and nutrient management, are
available through the Initiative as companion practices. Agricultural
producers who are eligible for EQIP can apply for this Initiative offered
by the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).

“Producers who apply for the Initiative during the current funding period
and meet the EQIP criteria will be given priority to be funded this year,”
Mosley said. The current application period for EQIP closes February 21.

NRCS has identified four principles as useful for improving soil health:
1. Keep soil covered as much as possible.
2. Use plant diversity to increase diversity in the soil.
3. Keep living roots in the soil as long as possible.
4. Disturb the soil as little as possible.

“We hope New Jersey farmers will visit their local NRCS office to learn
more about what we can offer them through EQIP and the new Soil Health
Initiative,” Mosley said. Visit the NRCS website
(www.nj.nrcs.usda.gov) for more about NRCS
and conservation
programs
available in the Garden State.