TEMPLE, Texas — February was a month filled with a wide variety of educational opportunities for soil and water conservationist across Texas. From soil health to leadership development, individuals from all corners of the state participated to better themselves and their agricultural practices.
The inaugural Texas Soil Health Short Course was held on February 22-23, 2017 in Wichita Falls, Texas. The short course offered a unique opportunity for participants to gain a better understanding of soil properties including water infiltration, water holding capacity, and organic matter content. The event was hosted by the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board (TSSWCB) and the Association of Texas Soil & Water Conservation Districts (ATSWCD).
With over 250 in attendance, the course provided participants with research in dynamic soil properties and technical information about practical approaches to implementing a system to improve soil health. Conservation demonstrations and soil pits showcased the functions of a healthy soil system and highlighted its improved water infiltration, soil porosity, increase biological activity, and greater nutrient efficiency.
Later in the month, TSSWCB hosted the Soil and Water Conservation District Leadership Development Workshop in Temple. The workshop is primarily structured for Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) Directors, District Employees and NRCS staff.
The event focused on the history and responsibilities of the Soil and Water Conservation District program in Texas along with the powers, and duties of the SWCD Directors. The 126 attendees also gained insight into the partnership of state, federal and local entities of government to help landowners with a technical and financial assistance as well as voluntary programs to implement soil and water conservation practices on their land.
As leadership and conservation practices continue to change it is essential the stewards of the natural resources in Texas stay abreast of the latest trends. TSSWCB recognizes the importance of education and outreach efforts and strives to provide learning opportunities.
—Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board
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