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
March, April and May, 2014. Visit this page to see upcoming meetings.
“When I was deciding where to put my vegetable garden, I picked the sunniest spot in the yard and started digging.
I wanted to get a look at the soil. What I found was great soil for gardening, and some garbage left behind. Because some of the debris was painted, I became concerned about lead in my soil. Since I had planned to test the soil for pH, organic matter, phosphorous, and potassium, I decided to add lead to the list.”
Lead is a concern if your garden is near an older painted structure. Lead in residential building paint was common up until the mid-1970′s, when it began to be phased out. To learn more about lead in soil, we recommend reading OSU Extension’s “Evaluating and Reducing Lead Hazard in Gardens and Landscapes.” Besides information on testing, there are also great tips on amending your soil to reduce lead uptake by plants, as well as other options for dealing with lead. For example, adding organic matter to the soil (which is also good for your plants!) can “enhance the formation of organic compounds that bind lead, making it less available in the soil water.”
If you do plan to have your soil tested for lead, be sure to check out our Conservation Directory for a list of local soil testing laboratories in the Soil Testing section.
Some gardeners are also interested in testing soil for pesticides. This can be difficult unless you know what types of pesticides you are looking for, and even then it can be very expensive (as much as $200 per sample). The more information you can find out about what types of pesticides you know or suspect were applied, the easier it will be to test for them and interpret the results. Since any pesticides that stick around would be bound to the soil, we recommend washing your garden produce very thoroughly!
East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District is seeking a new Executive Director!
The ideal candidate for this position will have a collaborative leadership style and will be experienced in working directly with an elected board or governing body, and work effectively with a wide variety of organizations and individuals, such as local, regional, state and federal government agencies, non-profits, citizens, community groups, elected officials, and private businesses.
We are working with the Prothman Company to conduct a national search for our new E.D. All interested applicants can find more detailed information, including a job profile and an online application, on the Prothman Company’s Current Searches page here (scroll down to Executive Director – EMSWCD). You may contact the Prothman Company with any questions about this job opportunity; please do not contact us!
Learn all about how to Naturescape, how to build your own rain garden, or how to make an excellent landscape site plan. We have also added some native plant workshops to the schedule – learn all about the benefits of native plants, and which ones will do well together in different areas of your yard. Register for a workshop today!
Click here to view the
schedule and register online!