The Executive Director of the Ontario Professional Agri-Contractors Association says a 10-year project with farmers to improve the water quality in the Garvey Glenn watershed north of Goderich is now moving into the Eighteen Mile Creek watershed.
Melisa Luymes has been working the Maitland Valley Conservation Authority on the project and she said Garvey Glenn is one of six watersheds involved in the Healthy Lake Huron Initiative. She said the farmers in Garvey Glenn have done and amazing job over the past 10 years.
“Pretty much all of them have moved to conservation tillage,” she explained. “There’s so much cover crops being grown, they planted 10 kilometres of wind break, they’ve buffered 90 per cent of their water courses and they’ve also installed 30 erosion control berms up at the head waters of the watershed.”
But that’s not all the farmers have managed to accomplish.
“Then they’ve got four kilometres of grass water ways and that, as it starts to get channelized, actually get into the municipal drains,” she said. “Then they’re buffering the sides of them with riparian buffers and trees and all of this is a systems approach, so all of these landowners had to work together.”
The team work is critical, Luymes explained, because what a landowner upstream does will impact land further downstream.There are about 25 farmers in Garvey Glenn watershed that worked on the project.
She said it’s a very long process and the results aren’t apparent in a short time and it’s take a lot of co-operation but they are making progress in Garvey Glenn and they’re now moving on to the Eighteen Mile Creek watershed.