Farmers work toward a better bay

Eastern Panhandle Conservation District hosts workshop to improve Chesapeake Bay

MARTINSBURG. W.Va. - “I am proud to say that West Virginia is one of the only states that is actually meeting their agriculture goals within the bay program,” said Conservation Specialist Barbie Elliot.  
On Monday morning, dozens of farmers from the Four-State region came together for the Eastern Panhandle Conservation District's Cover Crop Innovations Workshop.
“This time of year in this region, the slugs are not doing any damage. But in the spring when we plant corn and soybeans, the little, bitty slugs will eat our corn and soybean seedlings and kill them, which hurts our economics,” said Bobby Clark, guest speaker.  
Topics like growing cleaner crops and healthier soil were all tied into how farmers in the region could make an impact on both the bay and their own land.  
“Planting no-till and using these cover crops really helps water quality by reducing erosion and reducing the amount of nutrients that make it to the bay,” said Bobby Clark.   
With recommendations like better care for your crops, officials believe that tackling this issue is a year-round job.    
“I think the other thing is to find the right method and the right equipment in order to put out cover crops, to get good stands and keep the ground covered 365 days a year,” said Jim Hershey, guest speaker.  
With small events like the Cover Crop Innovations Workshop, officials are hoping to get one step closer to a better bay.

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