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Salinas River Riparian Enhancement Program

Year Awarded: Fiscal Year 2018

USDA Funding: $1,763,000

Partner-Contributed Funding: $2,120,719

Project Timeline: 2018 – 2023

Conservation Program Funded: Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP)

California Counties: Monterey County

Lead Partner: The Resource Conservation District (RCD) of Monterey County is the lead partner for the Salinas River Riparian Enhancement RCPP and, since 2014, has overseen arundo removal on over 250 acres of floodplain, including mastication and multiple strategic re-treatments with herbicide to target arundo and tamarish while facilitating native revegetation recovery.

Collaborating Partners:

  • Upper Salinas-Las Tablas RCD
  • Monterey County Ag Commissioner
  • San Luis Obispo County Ag Commissioner
  • Camp Roberts
  • Salinas River Channel Coalition
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • Monterey County Water Resources Agency
  • California Wildlife Conservation Board
  • California Polytechnical University, San Luis Obispo

Project Summary

The Salinas River Riparian Enhancement Program will enhance at least 400 acres of Salinas River floodplain (about 30 river miles) that are infested with the invasive, non-native plant Arundo donax (arundo). This RCPP project is the fourth phase of a 10-20 year riparian improvement program to enhance all 1470 arundo-infested acres on the Salinas River, which has the second largest arundo infestation in California. Arundo, a 20-30 ft tall bamboo-like grass, grows in dense stands and has very high biomass per area, resulting in huge water loss for riparian areas, habitat degradation for listed steelhead trout and amphibious, terrestrial and avian species, and increased flood risk along the river. Our broadly collaborative program, involving two counties, their respective Resource Conservation Districts (Monterey Co. and Upper Salinas-Las Tablas), local public and private organizations, and agricultural producers who manage the arundo-infested property along the river corridor, is designed using the latest science and on-the-ground experience, and led by organizations (RCDs) with the capacity and proven ability to successfully implement large-scale invasive plant control projects.


NRCS Contact


Ariel DeLara, District Conservationist
Natural Resources Conservation Service
Salinas Service Center
Monterey County
Phone: (831) 975-7735


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