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Marion County - Information for Partners and Participants

Wine grapes.

Wine grapes.

Marion County is located in the heart of the Willamette Valley and encompasses approximately 1200 square miles totaling 769,624 acres. The county is the largest agricultural producing county in the state of Oregon & producing over 254 varieties of crops Marion County is also the most diverse agricultural producing county in the United States. Over 65% of the county is privately owned with Federal and State forest covering approximately 35%. Annual precipitation ranges from 40 inches on the west side of the county to 120 inches into the Cascade Range. Marion County produces many high value crops on over 200,000 irrigated acres of fertile Willamette Valley soils. Salem is the state’s capital and the NRCS field office is also located in Salem.

NRCS Local Conservation Activities and Strategies

Marion County has focused largely on water conservation practice since the year 2000. Most water and energy savings projects involve converting inefficient irrigation system to highly efficient irrigation systems. Converting inefficient irrigation systems uses only a 1/3 the amount of water and by going to low pressure systems and moving to small pump sizes uses approximately 1/3 the amount of energy.

Conservation Implementation Strategy

NRCS Programs Available

Additional Conservation Resources Available

Local Work Group Updates

If you are interested in participating, please contact the NRCS District Conservationist listed below.

For meeting information, please click here.

Success Stories


Strategic Groundwater Conservation

For decades, water quantity has been the top resource concern in Marion County -- the most diverse cropland production county in Oregon's Willamette Valley. While the region typically receives ample rainfall, most does not fall during the growing season. That means irrigators rely on groundwater aquifers as the primary source to water their fields. But some of those aquifers -- such as the Stayton-Sublimity Restricted Groundwater Priority Area in Marion County -- are at risk of depletion.   More (HTML...)

Key Words:  EQIP, irrigation, Lower Willamette Basin

Willamette Valley Farmer Implements Conservation Practices Promoting Soil Health

Most  of the crops Peter Kenagy grows on his 325-acre family farm in the heart of Oregon’s Willamette Valley are typical of the area, yet his production methods are anything but conventional.  Recognizing that productivity requires sustainability, Kenagy has joined a growing number of farmers in implementing conservation practices that promote soil health.  Cover crops are a notable example. More (HTML...)

Key Words:  CSP, EQIP, Lower Willamette Basin

For Additional Assistance Contact

Salem Service Center
650 Hawthorne Avenue SE, Suite 130
Salem, Oregon 97301
(503) 399-5741

NRCS District Conservationist:  Les Bachelor, 503-399-5741 x122

Wetland Restoration in Marion County

Wetland Restoration in Marion County.
Hop production in Marion County.

Hop production in Marion County.