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Success Stories

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Conservation ... Our Purpose. Our Passion.


Conservation–Our Purpose. Our Passion. The purpose and passion for conservation is shared among many. It is shared between NRCS employees and partners who help people help the land. And it is shared by the landowners with whom we work. Our passion is manifested through the benefits derived from stewardship of private lands--benefits we all enjoy, such as cleaner water and air, improved soils and abundant wildlife habitat.

Learn about our stories, the stories of conservation made possible through a shared purpose, a shared passion and a shared commitment to conservation.

Rhonda Foster, Washington County district conservationist inspects tomatoes in Travis Appel's high tunnel. Mr. Appel received his first high tunnel in 2015.

From Corps to Crops; Military Experiences Helps Marine Transition to Farming

One Northwest Arkansas farmer credits his work ethic and experiences gained through 8 years in the U.S. Marine Corps as the catalyst for his new career.
Mike Hamilton, extension irrigation education area specialist for the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, instructs Lonoke Service Center soil conservationist Morgan Morrissett about poly- pipe hole placement at the Morris Farm.

Reducing Groundwater to Increase Sustainable Agriculture

Arkansas’s row crop producers are using innovative methods to ensure their crops receive the proper amount of moisture throughout the growing season. While cropland in the Arkansas delta is abundant, many years water can be scarce.

Mickey and Mike Taylor of Long Lake Plantation located in Helena, Ark.

Delta Farmers Mike and Mikey Taylor Use Cover Crops to Keep Their Farm Productive

Mike Taylor and his son Mikey Taylor, Jr., are producers with a long farming lineage in the Arkansas Delta. Mike’s grandfather started farming in the Phillips County town of Helena in the late 1930s and the family has been farming there ever since. Today, Mike and Mikey, Jr., are the owners and operators of Long Lake Plantation.

Lawrence Conyer Checks His Rice

Conyer Reaps What He Sows

After a career with the U.S. Army, Lawrence Conyer returned to Jefferson County. His plan was to grow hay on 23 acres of family land since as a youth he had helped his father grow and harvest hay around the county.

After view of glade.

Re-establishing the Glade

In the Ozarks, glades are treeless or sparsely wooded openings in woodlands, with bedrock at or near the surface. Glades contain some of the richest floras and unique plant communities in North America. Glades feature a rich variety of native grasses and prairie wildflowers, which in turn support an abundance of insects and wildlife. 

MRBI Resource Conservationist Planner Kevin Cochran, left, Prairie County District Conservationist Bryan Jacobs, and producer Steve Chlapecka, Jr.

Capturing Water Conserves Resource, Saves Money on Century Farm

Four generations of the Chlapecka family have made a living off the rich soils of the Grand Prairie since 1897, when Steve Chlapecka, Jr’s. great-grandfather immigrated to the area outside of Hazen from Czechoslovakia.
Rhonda Foster, Washington County district conservationist, with Diem and Bruce Norindr

Strong Conservation Partnership, Landscape Initiative Result in Delisting of Section of Illinois River

Four years into an 8-year Environmental Quality Incentives Program initiative to improve water quality of the Illinois River Sub-Basin and Eucha-Spavinaw Lake Watershed (IRWI) progress is being realized with a portion of the river in Arkansas being removed from the state’s 2014 Clean Water Act section 303(d) impaired waters list. 

Cattle grazing photo

Progress at Work: LakeView Farms incorporates conservation practices

Christina Spencer, along with her husband, Gary, raise registered Black Angus cattle outside of Powhatan, Ark., in Lawrence County.  For the past 8 years, she has worked with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to improve her pastures and prescribed grazing system.

Excavation crew removing compacted, dark sediment layer to expose house floor.

NRCS Restores Wetland and Associated Uplands, Protects Archeology-Rich Historical Site

A project designed to alleviate crop losses from flooding and restore wetlands along the Arkansas and Petit Jean rivers is also protecting the most significant archeological site in Yell County, Ark.

Environmental Quality Incentives Program - Stuart Davis

A Randolph County man with the long-term goal of broadening people’s perception of what it means to “live off of the land”, was finally afforded the chance to add the one ingredient that would allow him to launch his own campaign– an adequate water source.

Burthel Thomas, Todd Sewell and Sandra Martin discuss her organic farm and hoop house she is installing through EQIP.

Environmental Quality Incentives Program - Sandra Martin

Few people get through life without adversity.  How they choose to react to it often determines their future.

Ronnach Day, Conway County district conservationist, discuss the monitoring project planned on a Willow Bend Farm wetland with Ruth Spiller, farm manager.

Point Remove Wetlands Reclamation and Irrigation District MRBI Project - Willow Bend Farm

Willow Bend Farm, a 1,650-acre cattle farm, lies in the shadow of Petit Jean Mountain, nestled between the Arkansas River and Point Remove Creek.

Richard Young (right), a soil conservationist at the Jonesboro Area Office, and Edgar Perry discuss the work planned on Perry’s 85-acre farm.

L'Anguille River MRBI Project - Edgar Perry

For Edgar Perry, erosion problems on his 85-acre farm on Crowley’s Ridge have seemed like a downhill battle, literally.
Lee Pauley (right) discusses his farming operation with NRCS employees Burthel Thomas and Abe Hester.

Environmental Quality Incentives Program - Lee Pauley

Watering 10 acres of vegetables with a garden hose may seem like a daunting task. But for one Sevier County farmer, it was the only way to keep his crops alive.

Robert Hankins, Lincoln County district conservationist, discusses a conservation plan with Abraham Carpenter Jr.

Environmental Quality Incentives Program - Abraham Carpenter Jr.

Strong family values with an appreciation and respect for the land are the keys to Abraham Carpenter Jr.’s success in Grady, Ark.

Ronnach Day, Conway County district conservationist, and Barry McKuin and Joe Torian discuss the work done on Cadron Six Farms.

Conservation Security Program - Cadron Six Farms

The owners of Cadron Six Farms have turned their 800 acres of woodland and crop land into a “field of dreams” for themselves and the area’s wildlife.

Additional Information

For More Information Contact:

Reggie Jackson, State Public Affairs Specialist
(501) 301-3133