The Small Acreage program provides educational workshops and other outreach to residents on how to manage issues such as mud and manure management, fencing and pasture management, and other water quality topics unique to rural properties.
Classes, workshops, tours, and other events are offered throughout the year. See below for upcoming events:
– Harvest Celebration
– Workshops and Training
– Well and Septic Workshops
– Small Farm Tours
– Model Property Assessments
– Living on the Land
Ten farms will open their doors to the public on Saturday, September 16 to show the bounty of local agriculture in Clark County and give neighbors an opportunity to tour and meet their area farmers.
Farms will offer a variety of fun-filled events such as animal petting, hay rides, self-guided tours, and photo ops with alpacas. Educational activities will also be offered including edible plant walks, and classes on growing dahlias, alpaca fiber processing, youth finger knitting, and raising backyard chickens, pork and beef. Participants will have the chance to meet their local farmers; purchase fresh produce, U-pick, cut flowers, and other farm products; see alpacas, draft horses, chickens, lambs, and other livestock; and tour vegetable fields and flower gardens.
What: 2017 Annual Harvest Celebration
When: Saturday, September 16 from 10am – 3pm
Where: Here’s a line-up of the farms featured this year: Serendipity Alpaca Ranch, Peculiar Ambitions Educational Farm, Botany Bay Farms, Half Moon Farm, Bi-Zi Farms, Yacolt Mountain Farm, Coyote Ridge Ranch, Compass Rose Alpacas, White Oak Alpacas and Greene Jungle Farm.
Registration: not needed. Just show up!
Map: 2017 Harvest Celebration Program
Workshops and Training
The Small Acreage program offers workshops throughout the year on issues of interest to rural landowners. Topics include mud and manure management, pasture management, wells and septic maintenance, fencing for livestock, and more! See below for our upcoming offerings:
August 22 – Native Vegetation Landscaping with Vanessa Nagel
This workshop will teach participants how to landscape with native plants, covering good deer resistant, drought tolerant and flood tolerant plants. Participants will learn how to prevent erosion, address drainage challenges, plan rain gardens, and learn solutions for shady, wet and sloped areas.
When: Tuesday, August 22, 6-8pm
Where: 4700 NE 78th Street, Vancouver, WA 98665
Cost: $10 per person
Well and Septic Workshops
When: Wednesday, August 16 (Full) OR
Wednesday, September 20
Time: 6-9 PM
Where: CASEE Building B – 11104 NE 149 St, Brush Prairie, WA
What: Homeowners with septic systems and wells are invited to attend the Well and Septic workshop to learn valuable tips about maintaining their septic system and protecting their water supply. Clark County homeowners with owner-occupied, gravity fed septic systems can get certified to perform their own septic inspection at the workshop, saving money while learning important maintenance tips. Gravity fed septic systems must be inspected every three years with every other inspection performed by a certified O&M professional.
Septic inspection training and well safety tips will be presented by officials from Clark County Public Health, who help homeowners meet regulations protecting surface and ground water by ensuring septic systems and wells operate properly. By participating in the workshop and taking a short exam, homeowners can perform their next septic inspection and file it with Clark County Public Health rather than hiring a certified O&M professional to do it.
How can I sign up!? Online registration is available at http://2017septic.brownpapertickets.com/
For more information: contact Amber Lefstead, WSU Clark County Small Acreage Program Coordinator at email@example.com or 360-397-6060 ext. 5729
Small Farm Tours
They say “a picture is worth a thousand words” … Tours of farms and properties that follow clean water management practices, such as guttering to reduce mud, fencing to keep animals from eroding streams, composting of manure, and siting of outbuildings to improve efficiency, help participants see what is possible on their own property.
July 22 – Horse Property
A tour of a 3 acre Horse Homestead in Battle Ground will be offered on Saturday, July 22 and will show participants stewardship practices in action. If you are considering bringing horses onto your property, touring this homestead will demonstrate how rotational grazing and sacrifice areas can keep your small acreage healthy and mud free.
When: Saturday, July 22, 10AM – 12PM
Where: 20417 NE Bridlewood Rd., Battle Ground, WA
Cost: $10 per person
Small Acreage Recognition Program
The Small Acreage Program, supported by Clark County’s Clean Water Program, wishes to publicly recognize residents who are implementing clean water management practices on their acreage. If you or someone you know are doing good things on their small farms or rural property to protect our water, please let us know!
Do you manage your small acreage in ways that also protect our waters? Do you …
- Drainage – have gutters and downspouts on your buildings; and your runoff does not discharge directly into streams, creeks, or ditches?
- Vegetation features – have vegetation around steams, creeks, and wetlands; livestock fenced out or restricted from waterways?
- Limited erosion & compaction – have limited areas of bare soil?
- Inspected septic – know the location and type of septic system and when it was last inspected; limit activity on drainfield?
- Protected Wellhead – know where your well is located and wellhead is adequately protected?
- Safe chemical & fuel storage – store your chemicals and fuels properly away from wells and septic systems?
- Livestock manure – manage manure to minimize nutrient runoff?
- Manage pasture – have few weeds, limited bare soil areas, and little compaction in your pasture?
If you do some or all of these, you should consider applying to receive a Clean Water Sign. The Clean Water Sign shows your neighbors and the public that you are managing your land in ways that also protect our precious local waterways.
Completing our Assessment Guide for Small Acreages will give you an idea if you might qualify to receive this free Clean Water sign. Send your completed survey to Amber Lefstead at firstname.lastname@example.org and you will be contacted for a site visit to determine if you qualify for a sign.
Living on the Land
Living on the Land is a 12 week class series where small acreage landowners learn stewardship practices to help better care for their land. Living On the Land participants learn about important topics pertaining to soil, water, plants and animals that guide sound stewardship decisions for small acreage management. Topics are presented by local and regional experts and include pasture management, controlling weeds, wildlife, soil health, well & septic maintenance, and many more. Graduates of this training come away with knowledge about how different aspects of their property interact, practices that enhance natural resources, and helpful strategies for improving their property by taking a whole farm approach.
When: Wednesdays, August 30 – November 15
6:00 – 9:00pm
Where: The Heritage Farm
1919 NE 78th Street, Vancouver, WA 98665
Cost: $50 per family – up to two attendees. (partial scholarships are available on a limited basis)
Registration: Before you can register, you must take the pre-registration survey. Class size is limited to the first 30 students and registration fills quickly, so fill out the survey early. Upon completion of the survey, you will be contacted and given a registration link. Please allow several days for your survey to be reviewed and registration link sent.
For more information, contact Amber Lefstead, WSU Clark County Small Acreage Coordinator at email@example.com or 360-397-6060 ext. 5729
Publications and Videos
- Small Acreage Landowner Services Directory (715 KB PDF)
- Soil, Water, Forage Testing Labs in the Pacific Northwest (PDF)
- Keeping Clean Water Clean and Reducing Mud: Improving Drainage (335 KB PDF)
- Keeping Clean Water Clean and Reducing Mud: Managing Roof Runoff (227 KB PDF)
- Reduce Mud and Keep Water Clean: Sacrifice Areas (852 KB PDF)
- Simple Steps to Protect Your Surface and Well Water (150 KB PDF)
- Reducing Mud on Small Acreages (video clip)
Wells and Septic Systems
- Don’t Let Your Dollar$ Go Down the Drain! Septic Tank Additives (818 KB PDF)
- Protect Your Drinking Water: Simple Tips for Well Maintenance (1 MB PDF)
- Protecting Your Inve$tment: Inspecting Your Septic System (303 KB PDF)
- Save Time and Money – Properly Landscape Your Septic System (972 KB PDF)
- Water Quality Self Assessment Guide for Small Acreages (2.6 MB PDF)
- Constructing Ponds and Water Features: What Does it Take? (517 KB PDF)
- Current Use Taxation (545 KB PDF)
- Information on Small Acreage Management; A Resource List (604 KB PDF)
- Management Practices for Small Acreages: Keeping Water Clean (548 KB PDF)
- Natural Insect Control for Small Acreages (PDF – 580K)
- What Can You Do On Your Land? FAQs (652 KB PDF)
- Natural Insect Control For Small Farms (Slide show & narrative)
Stream Buffers for Agricultural Lands
- Riparian Buffers for Western Washington Agriculture (Video & PDF)
- Establishing Riparian Buffers Adjacent to Agricultural Lands (Video & PDF)
Pasture and Grazing Management
- Small Farm Publications and Videos (food safety, animal production, agricultural buffers)
- Tips On Land & Water Management for Small Acreages in Southwest Washington (PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2015 Annual Report (4.9 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2014 Annual Report (7.9 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2013 Annual Report (6.5 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2012 Annual Report (5.5 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2011 Annual Report (3.7 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2010 Annual Report (1.8 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2009 Annual Report (467 KB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2008 Annual Report (516 KB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2008 Annual Report: Appendices (2.7 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2007 Annual Report (792 KB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2007 Annual Report: Appendices (7 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2006 Annual Report (572 KB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2006 Annual Report: Appendices (6.4 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2005 Annual Report (570 KB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2005 Annual Report: Appendices (6.6 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2004 Annual Report (400 KB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2004 Annual Report: Appendix A (6.8 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program 2003 Annual Report (1.9 MB PDF)
Small Acreage Program Topics