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Cathy Dyson writes about King George County.

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Sloop and Emory farms earn awards for conservation practices

Two King George County farmers have earned awards for their outstanding management practices and efforts to protect natural resources.

James Sloop, whose farm is on Mathias Point in the Dahlgren area, and the Emory family, who run Poplar Ridge Farm off State Route 3, received the Clean Water/Bay Friendly Farm Award for 2011.

The award is given by the Tri-County/City Soil and Water Conservation District in cooperating with the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation.

Sloop earned the award for the Potomac River watershed. He told the King George Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, after receiving a sign to post at his farm, that the award is a big deal to him.

“We want to preserve the river and the land for future generations,” he said.

Sloop’s farm has:

  • 1,078 feet of fencing to keep animals out of the river
  • 660 feet of pipeline and two troughs for livestock water
  • 1,000 feet of cross-fencing to create a rotational grazing system to better manage his pasture fields
  • 20 acres that have been converted from cropland to hay
  • Almost an acre of warm season grasses, including wildflowers, to benefit pollinators and enhance wildlife habitat

More than a dozen people represented the Emory family at Tuesday’s meeting. The farm is in the Rappahannock River watershed and has a conservation easement on 100 acres. It also has:

  • 9,765 feet of fencing to keep cattle from all streams and to prevent bank erosion
  • 820 feet of pipeline and three troughs for livestock water
  • 12 acres of warm season grass and forested buffer along streams to keep out pollutants.

Farmers at both properties also regularly scout their fields to manage weeds, insects and disease problems and apply fertilizer after taking soil samples, according to the resolutions the supervisors passed.

For more information on programs offered by the Tri-City/County Soil and Water Conservation District, click here.

Permalink: http://news.fredericksburg.com/kinggeorge/2012/01/19/sloop-and-emory-farms-earns-awards-for-conservation-practices/