Maryland Agricultural Highlights – January 2018
State Soil Conservation Committee to Meet January 18
The State Soil Conservation Committee has announced that its next meeting will be held Thursday, January 18, 2018 at 9:30 a.m. at the Maryland Department of Agriculture, 50 Harry S. Truman Parkway, Annapolis, MD 21401. The meeting is open to the public and will focus on soil conservation and water quality program implementation and policy development. Established in 1938, the State Soil Conservation Committee coordinates the activities of Maryland’s 24 soil conservation districts, while advising the Secretary of Agriculture on matters relating to soil and water conservation. For more information, contact Louise Lawrence, Executive Secretary, and 410-841-5863.
2018 Nutrient Management Voucher Training and Renewal Courses Announced
University of Maryland Extension and the Maryland Department of Agriculture will offer free nutrient applicator voucher training and renewal courses to farm operators who apply nutrients to 10 or more acres of cropland. The two-hour course is required by the Maryland Department of Agriculture’s Nutrient Management Program once every three years for these operators.
- Anne Arundel County—February 8 and March 13, call 410-222-3906
- Baltimore County—January 26 and March 7, call 410-887-8090
- Caroline County—February 21, call 410-479-4030
- Carroll County—February 6 and February 22, call 410-386-2760
- Cecil County—January 24, call 410-996-5280
- Dorchester County—February 13, call 410-228-8800
- Frederick County—February 28, call 301-600-1594
- Harford County—February 13, call 410-638-3255
- Queen Anne’s County—March 2, call 410-758-0166
- Talbot County—March 6, call 410-822-1244
- Wicomico County—January 25, call 410-749-6141
State Agriculture Department Reminds Citizens Not to Use Fertilizer as a De-Icer
With winter in full swing, the Maryland Department of Agriculture reminds citizens that Maryland’s Lawn Fertilizer Law prohibits using fertilizer products to de-ice frozen surfaces. Once temperatures rise, these products can easily wash into nearby storm drains and streams with the first rain or snow. Fertilizer contributes to the growth of algae blooms that block sunlight from reaching Bay grasses, rob the water of oxygen and threaten underwater life. The University of Maryland recommends using sand and kitty litter as possible substitutes. For more information, visit http://extension.umd.edu/learn/melting-ice-safely-fs707.
2017 Maryland Nutrient Management Program Reporting Forms Available On-Line
The Maryland Department of Agriculture has announced that 2017 Nutrient Management Annual Implementation Reporting Forms (AIRs) and instructions are now available on the department’s website. Farmers use the reporting forms to document how they implemented their nutrient management plans during calendar year 2017. These reporting forms are due to the department by March 1, 2018. Most farmers also will receive printed copies of the reporting form in the mail. For more information, visit the website or contact the department’s Nutrient Management Program at 410-841-5959.
2017 Nutrient Management Program Annual Report Published
The Maryland Department of Agriculture’s Nutrient Management Program has published its 2016 annual report highlighting its activities and accomplishments in helping Maryland protect streams, rivers and the Chesapeake Bay from nutrient pollution. The report is available on-line at mda.maryland.gov.
The Maryland Agricultural Awareness Alliance is a coalition of federal, state and local agricultural agencies and commodity groups dedicated to educating Marylanders on agricultural issues.