Announcements

 

Rancher to Rancher Meet-up Saturday, June 22 from 9am-3pm

RCD - Scott Ranch and the RCDs are hosting a 'Rancher to Rancher' meeting to see results on the ranch learning sites. Ranchers are invited to see the Scott Ranch herd in action that day. See the effects of some new ideas on land health, productivity and livestock performance. And share what you are learning on your ranch--ranchers are the experts. Richard King and Scott Gerber will lead the day's discussion. Bring another rancher with you. RSVP by noon on June 21st, and we will have a lunch for you. Many thanks to the Soil Carbon Coalition and Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District for supporting this gathering. Click on the link below to register and get directions to the ranch. See you there!
Author: Alison Malisa | Register Here


FREE WORKSHOP FOR EQUINE FACILITY OWNER/OPERATORS!

FREE WORKSHOP FOR EQUINE FACILITY OWNER/OPERATORS!

RCD - This workshop will feature presentations from the Natural Resources Conservation Service and equine environmental management consultants. We will discuss beneficial management practices currently being used by horse owners to manage problem areas, as well as the Sonoma Resource Conservation District’s new LandSmart for Livestock program, with opportunities for one-on-one assistance to landowners. The workshop will also feature a brief tour of Santa Rosa Junior College’s Shone Farm equine facility. Please join us on Saturday, August 24th 9am-12pm Santa Rosa Junior College’s Shone Farm, Richard Thomas (RLT) Classroom 7450 Steve Olson Lane, Forestville For more information and to reserve a spot please contact Kari Wester at 707-569-1448 ext. 101 or at kwester@sonomarcd.org.
Author: Kari Wester


Planting for Pollinators Workshop for Backyard Gardens and Farms at Bayer Farm

Planting for Pollinators Workshop for Backyard Gardens and Farms at Bayer Farm

RCD - When: Saturday, June 15 Where: Bayer Farm 1550 West Avenue, Santa Rosa Time: 10:00 am -12:30 pm This public workshop launches National Pollinator Week in Sonoma County. Nationwide, June 17-23 is the week to celebrate the important work of pollinators- critical to the reproduction of over 75% of the world's flowering plants. Garden guru, Wendy Krupnik, will provide ideas and tips on how to plant and maintain gardens that welcome pollinators, conserve water, and look beautiful. This is a family-friendly, bilingual event. Come at 9am for the regularly schedule workday and help prepare the new Pollinator Garden! Small-scale farmers who qualify for EQIP funding are particularly encouraged to attend. Please click here to RSVP for the event. For questions, contact Alison Malisa at alison.malisa@sscrcd.org, or call (707) 569-1448. This outing is part of the RCD's Agricultural Heritage series, sponsored by the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District, with funding contributions from Clif Bar Family Foundation and the Patagonia Company and in partnership with the North Coast Resource Conservation & Development Council,Gold Ridge RCD,and LandPaths.
Author: Alison Malisa | Register Here


Grassland Restoration Training Opportunity at the Jacobs Ranch and North Slope Sonoma Mountain!
June 8 and 9th
9am - 4pm
Jacob's Ranch
5297 Sonoma Mtn. Rd.

Grassland Restoration Training Opportunity at the Jacobs Ranch and North Slope Sonoma Mountain! June 8 and 9th 9am - 4pm Jacob's Ranch 5297 Sonoma Mtn. Rd.

RCD - Southern Sonoma Resource Conservation District is partnering with Sonoma State University’s Fairfield Osborne Preserve to host the first Grasslands Restoration Training open to the public. This two-day training provides land managers, landowners, grasslands educators, and interested members of the general public with an introduction to grasses and California grasslands ecology, as well as hands-on experience with a variety of land management tools. Participants will learn management techniques, important native and invasive grasslands species, and emerging technologies such as CalFlora’s Plant Observer smartphone application. On the last day of training, land management professionals will guide participants through a management planning. We will experience the first half of the training indoors, have lunch and move to field-learning on Jacob’s Ranch and the newly constructed North Slope Trail, Sonoma Mountain's newest state-of-the-art trail, not yet opened to the public! Sonoma County Agricultural and Open Space District has preserved Jacob’s Ranch and designed and constructed the North Slope Trail which connects with Jack London State Park. The mosaic of District Owned Sonoma Mountain properties, that include the North Slope Trail, will eventually be transferred to Regional Parks and become a future Regional Park and Open Space Preserve. Lunch will be provided for both days. For more information on the California Coastal Grasslands, please visit the beautiful educational website designed by Sonoma State University and Ocean Song Farm and Wilderness Center with funding from the Sonoma County Water Agency in the link below. For more information on the importance of Coastal Grasslands, visit the link below or type: http://www.sonoma.edu/preserves/prairie/index.shtml The Southern Sonoma County and Sotoyome RCD's Agricultural Heritage Outings are sponsored by and in partnership with the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District. Trip Leaders: Suzanne DeCoursey, Sonoma State University Fairfield Osborn Preserve and Alison Malisa, Southern Sonoma County Resource Conservation District.
Author: Alison Malisa
More Information | Register Here


Home on the Mountain: The Legacy of First People & Early Settlers
(A Hike on Sonoma Mountain's North Slope)
April 20, 2013
FILLED

Home on the Mountain: The Legacy of First People & Early Settlers (A Hike on Sonoma Mountain's North Slope) April 20, 2013 FILLED

RCD - April 20, 2013 10am-3pm Come take a walk back in time as we explore Sonoma Mountain's newest state-of-the-art trail, not yet opened to the public! Guided by Historical Ecologist and Sonoma Mountain expert, Arthur Dawson, we'll hear stories of the mountain's First People; 19th-century homesteaders; and early farmers, including Jack London. Beginning at Jacobs Ranch, we'll traverse theNorth Slope of Sonoma Mountain to Jack London State Park, enjoying views and an invigorating walk along the way. This is a moderately strenuous walk of about 7 miles with a car shuttle back to the trailhead. Bring comfortable walking shoes, 2 liters of water, a sack lunch, and weather-appropriate clothing. Coordinated by the Southern Sonoma County Resource Conservation District and sponsored by the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District. To register for the outing, click the link below, or contact Alison Malisa at alison.malisa@sscrcd.org or by phone at (707) 794-1242 x.111. Further details will be sent to those registered. | Register Here


Petaluma Watershed Celebration!
RSVP here

Petaluma Watershed Celebration! RSVP here

RCD - Join us at the Petaluma Watershed Celebration! When: Thursday, April 18 Where: David Yearsley River Heritage Center on the McNear Pennisula in downtown Petaluma. Watershed Organization Fair….3:00 Presentations by Watershed Experts…4:00 Community Q&A Session…5:15 Cultural Stories and Salmon Tasting…5:45 The Southern Sonoma County RCD, in partnership with the Friends of the Petaluma River, are bringing the community together to rally around resource conservation needs in Petaluma. Local agencies, landowners, and scientists will provide an overview of the watershed, updates on watershed planning, conservation efforts, recovery efforts for threatened & endangered species, as well as cultural stories about the important relationship between indigenous people and salmon. At this event, we hope to both garner and demonstrate community support for the important work that lies ahead, as we move forward on releasing an updated Petaluma Watershed Enhancement Plan and renewing our focus on the needs and opportunities for resource conservation in this important North Bay watershed. See you there! This event is sponsored by the Southern Sonoma County RCD, the Friends of the Petaluma River, the Department of Conservation, and the Sonoma County Water Agency.
Author: Jason Sweeney
More Information | Register Here


Introducing LandSmart, a New Initiative of Your Local RCD

Introducing LandSmart, a New Initiative of Your Local RCD

RCD - Southern Sonoma Resource Conservation District is pleased to announce the release of the LandSmart program. LandSmart is a regional, collaborative program that helps land managers meet their natural resource management goals while supporting productive lands and thriving streams. LandSmart was developed by the Sotoyome RCD, Southern Sonoma RCD, Napa County RCD and Mendocino County RCD in collaboration with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), land managers, and resource agencies. By working together, we can offer an enhanced program that draws upon the skills and expertise of each RCD. Through this collaboration we provide our communities with a unique, cost effective conservation service specific to the region that is offered through a trusted and local organization. LandSmart services include: LandSmart Plan - Developing plans to help manage resources purposefully and assist land managers in meeting or exceeding environmental regulations, including the upcoming Conditional Vineyard Waiver for Sonoma Creek and Napa River Watersheds. LandSmart On-the-Ground - Implementing projects and best management practices to improve property and habitat. RCDs can provide technical assistance and financial support to plan and implement resource conservation practices. LandSmart for Kids - Involving the next generation in stewardship by providing opportunities for youth to be actively engaged in stewarding local resources. Click on More Information to visit LandSmart.org.
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March 13th, 2013 Public Hearing related to the proposed Conditional Vineyard Waiver for Sonoma Creek is Cancelled

SF Bay RWQCB - This is a notice from the San Francisco Bay Water Board to advise you that the public hearing scheduled for March 13, 2013 to consider adopting a Mitigated Negative Declaration and Conditional Waiver of Waste Discharge Requirements for discharges from Eligible Vineyard Properties in the Napa River and Sonoma Creek Watersheds is cancelled. The public hearing is cancelled due to the numerous comment letters we received, staff turnover, and the need to evaluate our strategy in light of the above. Future developments will be posted on the Board’s website and e-mailed to the interested parties list.
Author: Sandi Potter


Release of Public Notice for the Conditional Waiver Program for Vineyard Facilities in the Napa River and Sonoma Creek Watersheds

SF Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board - On November 16th the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board (Water Board) released the public notice for the Conditional Waiver Program for Vineyard Facilities in the Napa River and Sonoma Creek Watersheds (please see attached Notice). This Conditional Waiver is a regulatory process developed by the Water Board that waives requirements of the waste discharge requirements provided the eligible vineyard properties comply with the terms and conditions of the Conditional Waiver. Many vineyard facilities in Sonoma Valley and Napa will be required to comply with the Conditional Waiver and eligibility depends on various factors identified in the draft Conditional Waiver such as slope, property size and acres planted. Southern Sonoma RCD has grant funds to assist qualifying vineyard facilities in Sonoma Valley with compliance including assistance in completing Farm Water Quality Plans conservation plan completion to comply with the waiver. More details will be forthcoming on how to sign-up for our program assistance. For further information contact Alicia Moss at 707.794.1242 ext. 109 or Alicia.Moss "at" sscrcd.org. The notice, Conditional Waiver, Attachments, and Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration are ready for public review and are all available at the Water Board's offices and website at the link below. The public comment period for these draft documents is currently in place and written comments must be received by the Water Board no later than 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday February 1, 2013. A public hearing on the Conditional Waiver and Mitigated Negative Declaration will be held at on March 13, 2013 at the Elihu Harris State Building Auditorium, 1515 Clay Street, Oakland, CA 94612. For more information, please contact the Water Board at 510.622.2426 or your local RCD.
Author: SF Bay RWQCB
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Sonoma Community Center to Present Home Rainwater Harvesting Workshop Sat., January 26th

Sonoma Community Center - Inspired by the recent rainstorms, Sonoma Community Center will present a one-day workshop entitled “Make your own Rainbarrel” on Saturday, January 26th from 1:00-4:00 pm. A collaboration between SCC’s Center for Sustainable Living Program and Bay Area-based Greywater Action, the workshop will offer participants sustainable solutions for their own backyards. Class size is limited, so please register early by calling Sonoma Community Center at (707) 938-4626 x1. The workshop is $60 to cover materials costs only. For more details on the workshop content, download the PDF flier below or select "Link 1" to visit the Community Center event webpage.
More Information
Document: Rain Barrel Class.pdf


California Special District Magazine features our Slow It. Spread It. Sink It! Guide

RCD - Our very own Susan Haydon authored an article that was recently published in the Nov-Dec 2012 edition of the California Special District Magazine. We are very pleased to see this publication receiving additional exposure to a broader audience and the recognition it provides to the original authors and collaborators. Check out the article via the PDF below and thanks again to everyone who helped make this happen!
Author: Susan Haydon
Document: CSDANov_Dec_12_S3article.pdf


Newly Released Lower Sonoma Creek Flood Management and Ecosystem Enhancement Study

Newly Released Lower Sonoma Creek Flood Management and Ecosystem Enhancement Study

RCD - The RCD is pleased to announce the availability of the Lower Sonoma Creek Flood Management and Ecosystem Enhancement Study prepared by ESA PWA with SSCRCD. Download the full study report or the summary brochure following the link below. We thank the landowners and stakeholders for their many years of input and participation and acknowledge the funding support from our partners: US Army Corps of Engineers, California Coastal Conservancy, and the Sonoma County Water Agency. For more info or assistance: info@sscrcd.org
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RCD Launches Strategic Plan

RCD Launches Strategic Plan

RCD - Dear Partners and Community Members: I am pleased to share our 2012 Strategic Plan with you. In sharing our future plans for the District, I want to express how grateful we are for the critical participation, expertise, and co-sponsorship that many of you have contributed to our programs and our strategy for the District over the next 5 years. This marks our 61st year in supporting agriculture, environment, and people in Southern Sonoma County and this milestone would not be possible without you. I would like to send a special thanks to the board and staff of the RCD that have provided critical feedback and vision for the creation of this plan. To view our strategic plan online, please select the link below. We look forward to our future collaboration with all of you. Regards, Kara Heckert Executive Director Southern Sonoma & Sotoyome RCDs
Author: Kara Heckert
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California 2012 Environmental Quality Incentives Program deadline is November 16, 2012

USDA NRCS - PETALUMA, Calif., Sept. 24, 2012 – For those farm and ranch operators, as well as non-industrial private timber managers and Tribes, who are interested in applying for Fiscal Year 2013 Farm Bill conservation program financial assistance, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in California has set Friday, Nov. 16, 2012, as the deadline for future funding consideration. This deadline has been established contingent on Fiscal Year 2013 funding being allocated pending passage of a new Farm Bill or reauthorization of the existing 2008 Farm Bill. The application deadline applies to the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) initiatives and the Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative program. View the full press release by downloading the PDF document below. If you are interested in applying, eligible producers are encouraged to contact the Petaluma NRCS Service Center for Sonoma and Marin projects. Contact Heather at (707)794-1242 x125 to schedule an appointment and apply for 2013 programs. You may also select Link 1 to be forwarded to the California NRCS website for more details on the program, eligibility, and to view the application.
More Information
Document: Local FY13 Application Deadline Press Release.pdf


Agricultural Heritage Outing to Tolay Creek Ranch

Agricultural Heritage Outing to Tolay Creek Ranch

RCD - Southern Sonoma Resource Conservation District announces the next outing in its Agricultural Heritage series. This outing to Tolay Creek Ranch will follow local lore expert and Sonoma Land Trust Stewardship Director, Bob Neale, on a hike that ascends to a stunning viewpoint, and a talk that guides listeners through time to discuss the history of agriculture on that property and its impact on the land. We will discuss grassland management, creek restoration, the diversity of agricultural operations that have taken place on that land. This property is not yet open to the public on an ongoing basis. Come join us for this unique opportunity to visit a gem in our county's protected spaces. When: Sunday, October 21, from 11am - 3pm. Join us! Click here register for the hike. There is a maximum of 30 participants, so register soon! Remember to bring a lunch, lots of water, and good shoes. NOTE:This hike rates 4 for difficulty due to uneven terrain and 600 ft. ascent. Not appropriate for small children.
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4th Annual Creek Cleanup - September 15, 2012

4th Annual Creek Cleanup - September 15, 2012

RCD - The Southern Sonoma County RCD and the Friends of the Petaluma River are hosting an inland trash cleanup in Petaluma as part of COASTWEEKS, a three-week celebration of our coastal resources. This year, the kick-off is Saturday, September 15, and our goal is to increase the number of groups collecting trash across the watershed. Join us or create your own neighborhood team - we will support by providing needed materials and helping you organize. We need to pick up any and all trash and debris before winter rains wash it to the sea! Follow "Link 1" for details or "Link 2" to go straight to the registration page. We hope to see you out there!
Author: Jason
More Information | Register Here


Join us for a free outing at Scott Ranch, 8/16/12 5:30pm-7:00pm

RCD - Invite your friends and family for a free tour of Scott Ranch in Petaluma! You will meet the landowner, Tom Scott, and Ranch Manager, Scott Gerber (aka "the singing cowboy") and learn about rangeland management and land stewardship, including topics such as soil health, native grasses and rotational grazing. We'll hear about the history of the ranch and take a brief walk to enjoy vistas of the property. The Ranch Manager, with help from his border collies, will demonstrate how to herd cattle. In 2002, the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District (SCAPOSD) worked with the landowner to protect this 533 acre property for scenic quality and viewshed. This event is FREE! Due to limited space, reservations are required. Call Alison Malisa (707) 794-1242 ext. 111 or click on the link below to register. This is the second outing in the 2012 series of joint yearly outings made possible by a partnership between local farmers and ranchers, Southern Sonoma RCD, Sotoyome RCD, and SCAPOSD. There will be more outings to come so stay tuned!
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Outing at the Achadinha Cheese Company & Pacheco Family Dairy 
June 30, 2012 10:00am-1:00pm

Outing at the Achadinha Cheese Company & Pacheco Family Dairy June 30, 2012 10:00am-1:00pm

RCD - Join us for a tour of the Pacheco Family's goat dairy followed by a brief walk to enjoy stunning views of Petaluma. Meet the goats at milking time and learn about the family's multiple generations of ranching and dairying. A decade ago, the Pacheco's converted the dairy operations from cows to goats, and now feature award-winning, hand crafted artisan cheese by Achadinha Cheese Company. We will meet Jim, the dairyman, and his wife Donna, the cheesemaker, and learn about the grass fed mixed herd of Nubian, Serbian, and Alpine goats producing high quality milk. The Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District protected this Chileno Valley 230-acre ranch in 2008. 10am - 1pm, easy to moderate walk. Reservation required, please go to Link 1 below to register.
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June 26: Adapting to Climate Change on North Coast Vineyards and Farms

June 26: Adapting to Climate Change on North Coast Vineyards and Farms

CAFF - What are likely future climatic conditions that will affect crop growing in the North Coast region of California, and how can farmers adapt? How can diversifying the farm landscape function as an adaptive strategy? The North Coast Chapter of the Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF) will address these questions during this all day field event held on June 26, 2012, at Front Porch Farm in Healdsburg. Join us at this beautiful location on the Russian River, as we hear the most up to date information from prominent climate scientists, agriculturists, and seasoned growers. Registration starts at 8:30, Program begins at 9 am. Please buy tickets in advance at brownpapertickets.com - follow link below. $36 CAFF members/students $40 general
More Information
Document: FPF Flier 5.14.pdf


North Coast Forest Conservation Conference June 6-8, 2012

North Coast Forest Conservation Conference June 6-8, 2012

Sonoma Land Trust - The North Coast Forest Conservation Conference will be held in Santa Rosa, CA and takes place June 6-8, 2012. The conference is titled "Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities and Healthy Economies" and offers speakers, panels, and field trips addressing local and regional forestry topics including: forest health, forest management, ecosystem services, climate change, conversion issues, watershed restoration, use of prescribed fire, community forestry, and more. Choose Link 1 for more information or to register, or Link 2 to download the pdf agenda (5mb).
More Information | Register Here


350 Home & Garden Challenge
May 12th & 13th, 2012

350 Home & Garden Challenge May 12th & 13th, 2012

Daily Acts - On May 12th and 13th, thousands of people across Sonoma County will rise to the challenge of creating a more sustainable community. Building upon the incredible success of 628 garden actions in 2010 and 1,044 home and garden actions in 2011, our goal this year is to inspire 2,012 actions to grow food, conserve water, and save energy. From small to large, every action counts. Together, we can become more food and energy independent, and build our communities stronger, healthier, more beautiful, and more resilient! Why 350? It is possibly the most important number in the world and so we want to draw attention to it. Top climate scientists say this is the safe upper limit of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to keep a stable climate. Together our actions and alliances add up and create real solutions to the climate crisis. Stand up and be counted! Big challenges require inspired vision and bold action. Spread the word; engage your friends, neighbors and coworkers; and REGISTER! Follow the link below for more information and to register your action. The event overview and community organizing fliers are also available below.
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Documents: 2012 - 350 Overview.pdf | 2012Community Organizing 2-pager.pdf


FARMS Leadership Program in the Press Democrat!

FARMS Leadership Program in the Press Democrat!

Press Democrat - The Press Democrat ran a great article on our Sonoma FARMS Leadership Program! The FARMS Leadership Program is a program of the Center for Land-Based Learning (CLBL) that is delivered locally by SSCRCD with the support of many partners. Select the first link to go to our program page and learn more, the second link to visit the CLBL site, and check out a PDF of the article below. Thanks to the Press Democrat and Diana Gilbert for the great article, and to Gio Martorana and Valerie Minton of Sotoyome RCD for hosting us!
Author: Jason
More Information | Register Here
Document: Martorana_FARMS PDstory.pdf


Fall Petaluma River and Creeks Trash Cleanup, Sat. Sept. 17

Fall Petaluma River and Creeks Trash Cleanup, Sat. Sept. 17

RCD - The Southern Sonoma County RCD and the Friends of the Petaluma River are once again hosting a Coastal Cleanup Day Event in Petaluma as part of COASTWEEKS, a three-week celebration of our coastal resources that will begin on September 17, 2011. Come be part of this community and watershed cleanup event, or contact Jason to register your own local neighborhood event and help us cover more ground! The goal is to pick up any and all trash and debris before it becomes mobilized by winter run-off into our storm drains, creeks, river, bay, and ocean. Select LINK 1 to get all the details and LINK 2 to go to the registration page. We hope you will come join us!
Author: Jason Sweeney | Register Here
Document: CCD 2011 Poster.pdf


Three Upcoming On-Farm Outings in the Petaluma area!

Three Upcoming On-Farm Outings in the Petaluma area!

RCD - Join us on the farm! We are sponsoring three upcoming outings on Petaluma area farms. The outings feature special, guided tours of protected agricultural properties by the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation & Open Space District. You’ll meet the owners and learn about their operations, their commitment to sustainable agriculture, and the role of conservation easements in protecting these properties forever. To learn more and register, click on the link below
Author: Susan Haydon
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District Mourns the Loss of a Great Leader.

District Mourns the Loss of a Great Leader.

RCD - The RCD staff and Board of Directors are deeply saddened at the death of farmer and Board member Mitch Mulas. Mitch was a great inspiration to all of us as he was to our entire community. He served as a Board Director for over 34 years, providing steadfast leadership with a strong commitment to responsible government and sustainable agriculture. We are honored to have served the community under his guidance and direction.
Author: RCD Staff
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Second FARMS Leadership Program field day at Cresta Ranch - March 8, 2011

Second FARMS Leadership Program field day at Cresta Ranch - March 8, 2011

RCD - On March 8th, Eco-Action students from Analy High School planted oaks, bay, toyon and other native trees and shrubs along Porter Creek at the Cresta Ranch. This was the FARMS Leadership Program's second visit to Cresta Ranch this planting season to support Sotoyome Resource Conservation District, the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation & Open Space District (SCAPOSD), and Friends of the Mark West Watershed (FOMWW) in enhancing this stretch of Porter Creek. Utilizing environmental education funding from SCAPOSD to further leverage a grant from the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation via funding support from PG&E and The Nature Restoration Trust, Southern Sonoma County RCD with partners Sotoyome RCD and SCAPOSD, hosted David Casey's Eco Action class for a day of hands on service learning at the Cresta property. The property, recently acquired by SCAPOSD, boasts preservation of 340 acres of oak woodlands, riparian habitat and grazing land. Students learned from representatives of these partner organizations about the role of creek restoration in enhancing habitat and water quality and the role of seasonal grazing in land management. The project compliments the working landscape as well as future plans for management by Sonoma County Regional Parks. The students, together with FOMWW volunteers, planted trees and shrubs as part of a riparian restoration project to enhance water quality and wildlife habitat. Other activities included the installation of protective cages to exclude grazing cattle and protect the new seedlings. We thank our partners for another successful field day and commend teacher, David Casey, and the students from Analy's Eco Action class, who were very engaged and worked hard! Thanks to the dedicated volunteers and stewards from the FOMWW for the key role that they play, and thanks to the generous contributions of PG&E which support community-based conservation of California’s natural resources. Select "Link 1" to view beautiful photos from the day. To learn more about the FARMS Leadership Program and read about our other field trips for the current and past school years, select "Link 2" to check out the Center for Land-Based Learning website.
Author: Susan Haydon | Register Here


Notice of Public Workshop/ California Environmental Quality Act Scoping Meeting Conditional Waiver of Waste Discharge Requirements For Vineyard Facilities In The Napa River and Sonoma Creek Watersheds

California Regional Water Quality Control Board, San Francisco Bay Region - NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board (Water Board) staff will hold a public workshop/California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) scoping meeting to seek public input regarding the scope, content, and potential environmental impacts of a conditional waiver of waste discharge requirements for vineyard facilities in the Napa River and Sonoma Creek watersheds. Thursday, April 14, 2011; 6:00 PM- 8:00 PM; Napa Main Library Community Meeting Room, 580 Coombs Street Napa, CA 94559. You may download the PDF announcement below
Document: Napa-Sonoma CEQA scoping mtg.pdf


FREE WORKSHOP FOR EQUINE FACILITY OWNER/OPERATORS!

FREE WORKSHOP FOR EQUINE FACILITY OWNER/OPERATORS!

RCD - Managing Mud and Manure in Equine Facilities This workshop will feature presentations from the Natural Resources Conservation Service and equine environmental management consultants. We will discuss beneficial management practices currently being used by horse owners to manage problem areas, as well as the Sonoma Resource Conservation District’s new LandSmart for Livestock program, with opportunities for one-on-one assistance to landowners. The workshop will also feature a brief tour of Santa Rosa Junior College’s Shone Farm equine facility. Please join us on Saturday, August 24th 9am-12pm Santa Rosa Junior College’s Shone Farm, Richard Thomas (RLT) Classroom 7450 Steve Olson Lane, Forestville For more information and to reserve a spot please contact Kari Wester at 707-569-1448 ext. 101 or at kwester@sonomarcd.org.
Author: Kari Wester | Register Here


Public Meeting: Draft Napa/Sonoma Grazing Waiver Scoping Meeting

RCD - When: January 12, 2011 from 6:00 -8:00 PM. Where: The Schell-Vista Fire Station, 22950 Broadway, Sonoma. Why: The San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board (Water Board) staff will hold a public workshop/California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) scoping meeting to seek public input regarding the scope and content of a conditional waiver of waste discharge requirements for grazing activities in the Napa River and Sonoma Creek watersheds. The meeting will also include an introductory presentation to the grazing waiver. Please see the pdf flier below for more information.
Document: Grazing CEQA Meeting Notice.pdf


Sign-Ups for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program

Sign-Ups for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program

NRCS - NRCS is taking applicants for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) with a November 12, 2010 deadline for this year's funds. Applications are reviewed based on criteria set by a local workgroup that includes staff from NRCS, the Farm Services Agency, Resource Conservation Districts, Land Trusts, the UC Cooperative Extension, and others. In Sonoma County, projects that address the following resource issues are strong contenders to receive funding: - Water quality (nutrients, pesticides, temperature, sediment) - Direct improvement of soil quality - Water conservation (surface, riparian, groundwater) - Fire and flood hazard reduction on ag land - Wildlife habitat for threatened and endangered species and species of special concern Not only are Farm Bill programs a great way for growers to offset the costs of conservation practices, but they are also a valuable way to publicize the fact that the grower community is actively working to conserve natural resources. If you'd like to learn more, please contact Felicia Hanley at the NRCS Petaluma Service Center at 707-794-1242 ext 125.


The Kenwood Press - Tree die-off increasing fire hazard

The Kenwood Press - Tree die-off increasing fire hazard

The Kenwood Press - Five years ago Tish Ward noticed that the mature Douglas firs on her 40-acre ridgetop property were starting to die off. By two years ago, the rate of destruction increased to the point that there are now a hundred dead firs within sight of her home. And it’s not only the firs dying off – madrones are dying as well, again by the hundreds. More..... Click link 1 to read the full article. Click link 2 to be forwarded to a page of resource links concerning forest health and fire safety. Below you can also view a helpful article on wildlife considerations for designing fuel treatments (from the summer 2010 Forestland Steward newsletter). If you wish to be emailed with timely information regarding forest stewardship, sign up to our mailing list on this website and check the box for "Forest Stewardship."
Author: Jay Gamel
More Information | Register Here
Document: Top ten wildlife considerations for fuel treatments.pdf


Petaluma River Fall Trash Cleanup Event

Petaluma River Fall Trash Cleanup Event

RCD - The Southern Sonoma County RCD, the City of Petaluma, and the Sonoma County Water Agency Zone 2A Flood Control Advisory Committee are hosting a Fall Trash Cleanup Event in Petaluma on September 25th to coincide with COASTWEEKS, a three-week celebration of our coastal resources that will begin on September 25, 2010. The kick off for the celebration is Coastal Cleanup Day, when 80,000 Californians come together across the state to keep our coasts and inland waterways free of debris. The goal of the event is to pick up any and all trash and debris before it has a chance to be mobilized by winter run-off into our storm drains, creeks, river, bay, and ocean. Click on "Link 1" to go to the event page for more details. Click on "Link 2" to REGISTER to participate. You can also download the flier to distribute to family & friends. Hope to see you out there!
More Information | Register Here
Document: CleanupDay.10_flyer.pdf


3rd Annual Water Conservation Field Days: "Efficient Vineyard Water Management"

RCD - Program: Experience open dialog with discussion leaders: on-site water storage, irrigation system efficiency, available cost-sharing programs, ground water protection and frost protection updates, rainwater harvesting, vineyard irrigation and water management demonstrations. Presenters: Mark Greenspan, Advanced Viticulture LLC; Marcus Trotta, SCWA; Brooke Cole/Arturo Carvajal, NRCS; Valerie Minton, Sotoyome RCD; Leandra Swent, SSCRCD; Pete Opatz, Frost Protection Task Force. RSVP by August 13 to attend your appellation of choice. Each appellation will offer different conditions and technologies. RSVP for one or both. RSVP at the link below and download the attached PDF flier for the agenda and details.
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Document: Water Field Days 2010 Flyer v3.pdf


New publication!! Slow It. Spread it. Sink it! Stormwater Guide now available!

New publication!! Slow It. Spread it. Sink it! Stormwater Guide now available!

RCD - SSCRCD is pleased to announce the release of our latest publication: Slow it. Spread it. Sink it! A Homeowner's and Landowner's Guide to Beneficial Stormwater Management. This exciting new guidebook will help landowners and homeowners make the most of the many potential benefits of innovative stormwater management. The guidebook is packed full of information. Click the link below to read more about this publication. It is available as a pdf download from this site (18mb) or in hard copy at the RCD office.
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A Summer Walk in the Vineyard- Flocchini Family Estates
Held on Saturday, June 26th

A Summer Walk in the Vineyard- Flocchini Family Estates Held on Saturday, June 26th

RCD - A Summer Walk in the Vineyard at the Flocchini Family Estates was held on Saturday, June 26th from 1-3pm in the Lakeville area, Petaluma. Special thanks to our hosts: Andrew, Nicholas & Andrea Flocchini and Eric Neal, vineyard manager. Ice cream and cheese tasting donated by Mike Griffin, Clover Stornetta. View photos of the event by clicking "Link 1." View the outings calendar for upcoming events on the Open Space District website via "Link 2."
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Join Us on Saturday, June 26th, On-farm outing and vineyard walk- Flocchini Family Estate

Join Us on Saturday, June 26th, On-farm outing and vineyard walk- Flocchini Family Estate

Southern Sonoma County RCD - Join us on our first outing of the summer in the vineyards of the Flocchini Family Estate in the Lakeville area, located just 3 miles north of San Pablo Bay. We will walk among the vines and view the working landscape of this 153 acre ranch that includes both vineyards and pasture lands. Come meet the farmer and learn about the family’s history which began operating as a Petaluma dairy. Today, much of the property is now focused on growing premium wine grapes while grazing of dairy cows and sheep continues. Learn about the cool climate and rich soils on this Sonoma Coast Appellation property which provide the vineyard’s foundation for pinot noir, syrah, and chardonnay varietals. This ranch was protected via conservation easement by the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District in 2004 and shows the Flocchini family’s commitment to resource conservation and land preservation. See the flier below for details and directions on how to register.
Author: Susan Haydon
Document: June 26 announcement .pdf


Triple-C Dairy Tour Held May 11, 2010

Triple-C Dairy Tour Held May 11, 2010

RCD - A big “thank you� to property owners Robert and Norene Camozzi for their generosity and hospitality. We also need to thank our project partners, The Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District (SCAPOSD), and Mike Griffin of Clover-Stornetta Farms. To start the day, Stu Martin explained how SCAPOSD works with local farmers to protect important agricultural lands throughout the county. Mike Griffin of Clover-Stornetta discussed organic pasture management, the challenges facing the dairy industry and led participants on a short hike featuring spectacular views of Two Rock Valley. Owner Robert Camozzi headed up a tour of the Dairy operations where attendees had the opportunity to learn more about what it takes to produce a glass of organic milk. When our tours concluded, we were treated to light refreshments featuring locally produced organic dairy products courtesy of Clover-Stornetta Farms. Over refreshments, participants had a chance to get some one-on-one time with our hosts, fellow tour-goers and meet “Emily�, the Camozzi’s 4-H show cow. Click "link 1" below to check out tour photos. Click "link 2" to check out the current SCAPOSD outings calendar.
Author: John Guardino
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Sonoma Valley Groundwater Management Program, RCD Director Tish Ward Interview. November 2, 2009

Sonoma Valley Groundwater Management Program, RCD Director Tish Ward Interview. November 2, 2009

Southern Sonoma County RCD - RCD Director Tish Ward promotes community-based planning and problem-solving to address Sonoma Valley groundwater issues. Director Ward stars in YouTube video with Supervisor Valerie Brown, Marcus Trotta, Bill Keene, and John MacLeod. Click the link below to view the approximately 11 minute video.
Author: Susan Haydon
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RCD Ag Scientist John Guardino interviewed in North Bay Biz!

RCD Ag Scientist John Guardino interviewed in North Bay Biz!

North Bay Biz - Got Rain? SSCRCD Ag Scientist, John Guardino is interviewed about the RCD’s role in rainwater harvesting and Sonoma Valley’s Groundwater Management Program in this recent article from North Bay Biz, entitled “Box of Rain.� December 2009 issue; Author: Ray Holley. Link below....
Author: Ray Holley
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Cloudy Bend Ranch Twalk (talk & walk!) Held January 9, 2010

Cloudy Bend Ranch Twalk (talk & walk!) Held January 9, 2010

Southern Sonoma County RCD - A big "thank you" to Craig Jacobsen, rancher and owner of Cloudy Bend Ranch on the Petaluma River. We had a great group of folks out to meet Craig, learn about the ranch, hear a presentation on bayland geomorphology and the local levee system, and then take a stroll along the levee. The weather was true to the ranch’s name - we had cloudy but dramatic skies along the river bend. The pasture was dotted with over a 1,000 lambs with Craig's Great Pyrenees dog, "Bear", checking us visitors out and watching over his flock. Click "link 1" below to check out photos of the twalk. Click "link 2" to check out the SCAPOSD outings calendar.
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SSCRCD SLEWS Program Field Day in the Press Democrat: Sonoma Valley High students dig in to save oaks

SSCRCD SLEWS Program Field Day in the Press Democrat: Sonoma Valley High students dig in to save oaks

Santa Rosa Press Democrat - Amid a light drizzle, high school students on Friday planted hundreds of acorns as part of a woodlands restoration project at the Bouverie Preserve in Glen Ellen. “We are restoring a vineyard that was obviously cleared of oak woodland that was there and a spot that was also cleared for a pasture,� said Jeanne Wirka, Bouverie biologist. Wirka said the project is an attempt to stem the loss of oak woodlands, which are disappearing at an alarming rate.
Author: BOB NORBERG
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Ag-Focused Outings Coming in Early 2010

Ag-Focused Outings Coming in Early 2010

Sotoyome RCD News - The Sotoyome Resource Conservation District (RCD) and Southern Sonoma County RCD are pleased to announce the beginning of a new collaboration with Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District (District) to offer a series of events and outings that will highlight the connections between agricultural sustainability in Sonoma County and the work of the District. Come outside with us and hear directly from the ranchers, farmers and private land owners who are working with the District and other local organizations like RCDs to preserve agriculture, open space and the natural resources that make Sonoma County such an extraordinary place to live and work. These outings will cover a wide range of topics from the experience of ranching within the levees along the Petaluma River to grazing management on Taylor Mountain Open Space Preserve to sustainable forestry and its relation to creeks and salmon habitat in the Mark West watershed. Some of the outings will be tailored to the specific interests of those in the agriculture community and others will be open to the general public. Look for more details and registration information at www.sotoyomercd.org/events.html. Information about these outings can also be found at these websites: www.sonomaopenspace.org and www.sscrcd.org.
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