Growing Green: Local Farmers Working Toward a Greener Future

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Since 2014, SYRCL has been working to inspire our community to engage in sustainable and ecologically sound cannabis cultivation in the Yuba watershed. With cannabis cultivation on the rise in the Yuba River watershed, hundreds of videos have popped up online promoting the use of products that are not environmentally friendly. SYRCL decided to collaborate with local cannabis farmers to produce three videos that highlight environmentally friendly, best management practices for cannabis cultivation in our watershed.

SYRCL believes the best way to protect our watershed is by providing education to farmers about sustainable and environmentally friendly growing practices while working with county and state regulators as they frame the future of cannabis. Unregulated dispersed agriculture across the watershed has the potential to negatively impact the forests, rivers, and communities through water diversions, water pollution, the poisoning of wildlife, litter, vegetation removal, and erosion.

The videos target environmentally friendly and low(er) cost solutions for farming without added chemical pesticides and fertilizers, expensive soil amendments, and extensive infrastructure. A grant, awarded by the Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment and the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board aimed to educate farmers from disadvantaged communities who are utilizing cannabis cultivation as a primary or secondary source of income.

These videos are available for free online and will be promoted at upcoming Nevada County Cannabis Alliance meetings throughout 2018. To check out presentations and videos from previous years events, click here.

Growing Green for the Yuba: Soil Management for Healthy Plants and a Healthy Watershed

This video shows how to create a sustainable soil system, with minimal use of soil and water for a greenhouse grow.

  • Less is more, four inches of topsoil is enough.
  • Create a living soil infusion mat.
  • Know your soil: adjust for imbalances as needed.
  • Treat the farm as a whole system, rather than individual plants.
  • OMRI: Organic Materials Review Institute: www.omri.org.

Growing Green for the Yuba: Smart Choices for Water Conservation

This video shows how to build soil to retain and conserve water, reduce evaporation, and prevent runoff.

  • Learn how your soil holds water and how much evaporation is taking place, then make smart choices about how to adjust watering.
  • Smart irrigation controllers monitor weather and adjust for you.
  • Permaculture is a system of agricultural principles centered around simulating or directly utilizing the patterns observed in natural ecosystems.
  • Hugulkultur is a technique that utilizes no-dig raised beds loaded with organic material, nutrients, and air pockets to hold moisture, build fertility, and maximize surface area.
  • Integrated Pest Management (IPM) focuses on long-term prevention of pests through a combination of techniques such as habitat manipulation.
  • Companion planting invites beneficial bugs.

Growing Green for the Yuba: A Minimalist Approach to Healthy Soil

This video demonstrates a minimalist approach to creating a diverse and sustainable soil system by compost and mulch.

  • Less is more.
  • Add mulch to reduce evaporation and water use.
  • Feed your plants by building and adding compost, not by adding nutrients.
  • Chicken manure, kitchen, vegetable & garden waste, and woodchips mixed together will create a soil that is rich with microorganisms.
  • Control pests with comfrey, nettle and horsetail. This works to slow insects and promote plant vitality.
  • Companion planting draws pests away (bush beans).
  • Lasagna Composting: the process of layering compost and mulch to create healthy soil.

Thank you to our sponsors!

Growing Green for the Yuba 2017 is presented with appreciation to the Rose Foundation and The Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board and organized in coordination with the Nevada County Cannabis Alliance.


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