Soil Conservation and Water Quality Plans (SCWQP) or Conservation Plans can be a valuable tool for farmers to manage resources and improve profitability. A conservation plan is a working document designed to fit each individual farmer's needs while protecting and conserving their soil and water resources.
A conservation plan folder contains:
Aerial photo of the farm which includes property boundaries, topography, current and proposed BMPs, and possibly other resource items;
A written record of the landowners decisions regarding cropping sequences, residue management, and nutrient management, with a plan for implementation and;
A map showing soil types and boundaries along with descriptions and capability classes showing suitability for cropland, forestland, and wildlife habitat.
Conservation plans are not mandatory unless all or part of the farm falls within the Chesapeake Bay Critical Area, or you are applying for or currently participate in an agricultural land preservation program, or participate in any state or Federal cost share programs.
If you are interested in developing a conservation plan for your farm, please contact one of the conservation planners to set up an on-farm visit. The planner will need to walk the farm and take notes on current farming practices and any resource issues.