Now accepting applications for the Headwaters Farm Incubator Program!

Some summer crops at Headwaters Farm, and Mt. Hood in the distance

We are now accepting applications for the Headwaters Farm Incubator Program 2016 growing season! The Farm Incubator Program, now entering its fourth year, involves leasing out sections of our land at Headwaters Farm to motivated, experienced individuals looking to start their own farm business.

Visit the Incubator Application section of our website for information about the program and instructions on how to apply! You can also contact Rowan Steele, our Farm Incubator Program Manager. All application materials are due by Thursday, October 29th, 2015.

Launch your project with a Partners in Conservation grant!

Is your organization looking for funding for a conservation project? You can apply for a Partners in Conservation (PIC) grant!

What we fund:

Projects must address one or more of the following issues:

  • Soil Health
  • Water Conservation / Quality
  • Habitat Restoration
  • Watershed Health
  • Environmental Education

There are two types of grants available:

  • PIC Grants: shorter term projects with a one year time frame, for a minimum grant award of $5,000 and a maximum of $60,000.
  • PIC Plus Grants: projects with a time frame of two to three years, between $5,000 and $100,000 per year.

Grant applications are due by December 15th this year; don’t delay! Please note that updated application materials will be available beginning October 15th. If you have questions about applying for a grant, please contact Suzanne Easton, EMSWCD Grants Manager, at

Learn more about PIC Grants!  See some past grant Project Highlights

You can also learn about our 2015 PIC grants awarded here.

Welcome to our new Conservation Program Supervisor, Andrew Brown!

Conservation Program Supervisor Andrew Brown

On behalf of EMSWCD board members and staff, we are very pleased to welcome our new Conservation Program Supervisor, Andrew Brown!

Andrew oversees the Conservation Legacy Program, which includes the Grants, Land Legacy and Farm Incubator programs, and serves as the District-wide planner. Andrew’s conservation and planning experience stems from his public, non-profit and private work in South Africa. During that time he worked in the Park Planning and Development Department of South African National Parks where he coordinated a regional landscape conservation initiative, and he also managed various conservation planning, land consolidation, stewardship and restoration projects.

Andrew came to the EMSWCD most recently from the Multnomah County Drainage District where he served as a Management Analyst. He holds an M.S. in Conservation Biology from the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology at the University of Kent in the UK, and a B.S. in Botany and Environmental and Geographical Science from the University of Cape Town, South Africa. Please join us in welcoming Andrew to our organization!

Our fall workshops are here!

maidenhair fern (Adiantum aleuticum)

Our fall season of workshops is here! We offer free and practical how-to workshops at a variety of locations in collaboration with our community partners. Our workshops cover choosing the right native plants for your yard, natural landscaping techniques that reduce water use and pollution, controlling troublesome weeds without synthetic herbicides and putting rainwater to use with a rain garden!

Our workshops are free and open to everyone, but they are filling up quickly – register for a workshop today!

View the workshop schedule and register here!

Want to get the latest workshop and event updates? Join our email list, or for more frequent updates you can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

Finding Community at Headwaters

Emily Cooper of Full Cellar Farm

This is the fourth in our “From our farmers” series, and was contributed by Emily Cooper of Full Cellar Farm, one of the farmers enrolled in our Farm Incubator Program.

There’s a buzz around Headwaters Farm this year, and it isn’t just the bees. With 13 farms leasing land at the incubator (up from 8 last year), the activity here is more evident than ever before. And along with the sounds of the rototillers, irrigation headers, and tractors, there’s another sound that’s harder to hear, but more persistent than any other. It’s the sound of community, and it starts with “Good morning!”

I love farming at Headwaters, and the biggest reason is the community. With so many people here, it’s guaranteed you’re going to bump into someone as you go about your work. Maybe you share the wash station and get to see what variety of radish someone else is growing – or what pests are eating their carrots. Maybe you see a new tool someone is using, and stop to ask how they like it. Maybe you pause in the barn to bemoan your overabundance of tomatillos, and someone else magically has a customer who wants them. Or maybe you just say hi as you pass at the port-a-potty. (I’m lucky enough to host this hub of activity next to my field.) Read more

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