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Agricultural News


Farm Bureauís Pollinator/Rain Garden Demonstrates Farmersí Efforts to Improve the Environment

Mon, 16 Aug 2021 09:18:43 CDT

Farm Bureauís Pollinator/Rain Garden Demonstrates Farmersí Efforts to Improve the Environment Through its annual County Activities of Excellence Awards, the American Farm Bureau Federation celebrates county Farm Bureaus for their unique, volunteer-driven programming. Kane County Farm Bureau was among 12 county Farm Bureaus recognized for their programs and activities in 2019 and 2020.

To illustrate two of the many ways farmers strive to improve the land, air, water and wildlife habitat, Kane County (Ill.) Farm Bureau last summer invited the public to join them in installing a pollinator/rain garden along a well-traveled road that ran by their suburban office in the northeastern part of the state.

The effort was also an opportunity for the Kane County Farm Bureau to show farmers how the water quality benefit measures in a newly passed stormwater ordinance could be achieved without the construction of costly stormwater detention basins. Kane County Farm Bureau had successfully lobbied to improve the ordinance via water quality benefit measures (best management practices) in lieu of stormwater detention on agricultural lands.

Kane County Farm Bureau tapped the county Division of Environmental and Water Resources to design the pollinator/rain garden layout and choose the plant species. The department also provided a grant to the county Farm Bureau for the 450 plants for the 1,000 sq. ft. garden.

A contractor excavated, leveled and backfilled the garden area and one of the Kane County Farm Bureau directors provided the topsoil, compost and mulch. A local wholesale garden center was contracted to deliver the plants and county Environmental and Water Resources staff assisted in laying out the plants according to the design before the volunteers arrived.

Kane County Farm Bureau directors provided hand tools and power tools like shovels, pitch forks, drills and soil augers and the county Forest Preserve District sent an employee with a gas-powered auger to assist in making holes for larger plants.

Kane County Farm Bureau tapped the county Division of Environmental and Water Resources to design the pollinator/rain garden layout and choose the plant species. The department also provided a grant to the county Farm Bureau for the 450 plants for the 1,000 sq. ft. garden.

A contractor excavated, leveled and backfilled the garden area and one of the Kane County Farm Bureau directors provided the topsoil, compost and mulch. A local wholesale garden center was contracted to deliver the plants and county Environmental and Water Resources staff assisted in laying out the plants according to the design before the volunteers arrived.

Kane County Farm Bureau directors provided hand tools and power tools like shovels, pitch forks, drills and soil augers and the county Forest Preserve District sent an employee with a gas-powered auger to assist in making holes for larger plants.

Applications are now open for the 2021 County Activities of Excellence. Up to 24 counties will display their winning activities at the 2021 American Farm Bureau Annual Convention and Trade Show in Atlanta in January. County award winners receive up to four free registrations to the Annual Convention (cost of travel and housing not included) and a $2,250 stipend to apply toward the cost of travel and exhibition.

   

 

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