Upcoming EMSWCD Board and Committee Meetings

The East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District (EMSWCD), all of Multnomah County East of the Willamette River, has scheduled Board and Committee Meetings at the District Office (Board Room), 5211 N. Williams Ave, Portland, OR 97217, for the months of May and June 2015. Visit this page to see upcoming meetings.

Getting rid of invasive garlic mustard!

patch of invasive garlic mustard, flowering

Garlic mustard is a very invasive, fast-spreading weed, and Multnomah County has the worst infestation of it in Oregon. The roots produce a chemical that is toxic to other plants, and it can grow in most soil types. It can also grow in full sun or full shade, making it a threat to a wide variety of our native plants and habitats. You can help get rid of it, though – read on for some important tips about pulling up and getting rid of garlic mustard.

Many other plants are often mistaken for garlic mustard, especially before the flowers come up. Control is easiest when garlic mustard plants are in bloom (usually beginning in April), unless you can easily identify the rosettes (leaves) of the plant. Hand removal can be a successful technique in small patches that can be visited often and re-pulled frequently. Learn how to pull up garlic mustard and see more photos after the break! Read more

From our farmers: My journey with organic certification at Headwaters

Headwaters Organic Certification

This is the second in our “From our farmers” series, and was contributed by Sue Nackoney of Gentle Rain Farm, one of the farmers enrolled in our Farm Incubator Program.

Ever since Jim and I started Livin’ Spoonful, where we make yummy raw food crackers and cookies, we were committed to 100% organic ingredients. In our minds, there was no other way to be offering food to people that was truly nourishing, with the intention of helping them to thrive. That was almost 13 years ago.

Today, with our feet on the ground for our first season at Headwaters, we are finally realizing our vision of growing our own food ingredients for the crackers. It has been such a joy to be able to start Gentle Rain Farm and be a part of this amazing program and opportunity. Read more

We are hiring! New Conservation Program Supervisor and Conservation Technician/Outreach positions

EMSWCD yard

Updated May 15, 2015.

We are excited to announce that we are hiring for two new positions: a Conservation Program Supervisor and a Conservation Technician – Outreach and Education!

The Conservation Program Supervisor will serve as the program supervisor for the Land Legacy and Grants Programs, and also as lead planner for our District, overseeing the development and implementation of our strategic, program-specific and annual plans and reports.

The Conservation Technician – Outreach and Education will serve as the lead for outreach and education for the Rural Lands Program, promoting programs and offerings to rural, private landowners through a wide variety of outreach activities.

Please note: the application period for these jobs ended on May 11th, and we are currently reviewing applications.

Announcing our 2015 Partners in Conservation grants!

Growing gardens

The East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District (EMSWCD) awards $739,322 through its 2015 Partners in Conservation (PIC) grants for conservation and environmental education projects.

We received 34 PIC applications this year, representing projects in each of five grant program areas: restoration and monitoring, stormwater management and urban landscaping, urban gardens and sustainable agriculture, environmental education, and equitable access to conservation benefits. The PIC grant program funds projects through a competitive process in order to support the efforts that are most closely aligned with the EMSWCD’s strategic priorities.

This year, the EMSWCD Board of Directors awarded 24 grants, including two multi-year PIC Plus grants. EMSWCD provides partial funding for most of these projects, with a minimum 1-1 match for all grant amounts over $10,000. EMSWCD’s PIC funding for 2015 will leverage more than $2 million in additional support! A wide variety of projects were funded this year, from a project to restore over 100 acres in the Mirror Lake floodplain to another project that will establish a new community garden at the Floyd Light Middle School in East Portland.

Read the full press release here (PDF), which includes the full list of 24 grant projects and details about each. Learn more about our annual and monthly grants here.

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