Conservation stewardship program signup due March 24

February 12, 2023

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service in Delaware is accepting applications for its conservation stewardship program. 

Financial and technical assistance is available to help producers and landowners take conservation efforts to the next level while strengthening their operations.

While USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service accepts CSP applications year-round, Delaware producers should apply by Friday, March 24, to be considered for funding in fiscal year 2023. 

“CSP offers incentives to producers for maintaining a high level of stewardship on their land and helps them implement more robust conservation activities to achieve their management goals,” said Kasey L. Taylor, Delaware NRCS state conservationist.

Through CSP, agricultural producers and forest landowners earn payments for actively managing, maintaining and expanding conservation activities like cover crop planting, using ecologically based pest management, and supporting buffer strips, and pollinator and beneficial insect habitat – all while maintaining active agriculture production on their land.

Through CSP, Delaware offers payment for the following conservation enhancements, among others: planting cover crop mixes to alleviate compaction, or using a soil health assessment to assist with development of a cover crop mix to improve soil health; forage collection and analysis for improved harvest decisions in line with nutritional needs; evaluation of irrigation pumping plants and upgrades to address energy efficiencies; and reducing invasive species, improving timber stands and creating wildlife habitat by creating snag and den trees, promoting forest stand structural diversity and enhancing native bat habitat on forest land.

CSP provides an incentive payment for existing conservation activities in conjunction with new activities to address and enhance resource concerns for increased environmental benefits on the land.

CSP is for working lands including cropland, pastureland, nonindustrial private forest land and agricultural land under the jurisdiction of a tribe. Participating farmers will further address priority resource concerns related to soil quality, water quality, air quality and plant health. On-farm benefits include increased crop yields, decreased inputs, wildlife habitat improvements and better resilience to weather variables.

To learn more, call the USDA service center in Sussex County at 302-856-3990, Ext. 3 or go to


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