Fall Pond Clinic-September 20

We will be holding a pond clinic at Pattison Park just outside Owensville on September 20th at 5:30 pm.

This is the first event in a few years. We will be returning to our normal April event in 2023.

This years’ event will meet at the shelter house and you will be rotating to speakers in small groups around the pond. Please bring your own chairs if you like. Topics to include: Ponds 101, Aeration, Pond weed control, and a naturalist talk. Discussions will be based on questions you bring. If inclement weather is predicted, we will be indoors at lodge across from shelter house. Parking will be on both sides of US 50. Jones Fish Hatchery and Clermont County Parks will also be presenting. Clermont Co. Park District- Pattison Park 2228 US Highway 50, Batavia OH

There is no cost, but registration is recommended for event setup. To register or additional information contact Connie Miller at (513) 732-7075 ext 2 or cmiller@clermontcountyohio.gov

Its raining-Who do I call?

In Ohio there is not a specific agency that oversees and manages all of the water resources in Ohio. Water is typically abundant and often times taken for granted. The laws and managing agencies can be very confusing and oftentimes non-existent because drainage laws are often left as civil issues to be decided by the courts.

Here are some of the most common calls we handle in our office. Drainage Our staff assists landowners with advice on their water issues. This includes excess standing water, stream bank erosion, and improving water flow through the property. Any building permits, questions or complaints should be directed first to our county building department. Our office can help with solutions to
problems that landowners are willing to fix on their own or with their neighbors. Our office is not regulatory.

Agriculture
Our office works closely with federal and state programs to help agriculture operations address environmental concerns including cropland drainage, farm lot water management, stream protection, among other projects and programs.

Ponds
We provide educational services to help maintain existing ponds and storm water basins, as well as guidance in placement of new ponds.

Storm Water
Storm structures throughout the county are maintained by many different agencies and private landowners. Typically the municipality who owns the road, maintains the right-of way
(ROW) structures (not including driveway culverts). Those structures outside the ROW and on private property are mostly the responsibility of individual landowners or home
owner associations. If you have a problem on your street, call your township or municipality for service. Our office maintains the GIS maps for the public storm water structures.

Our office does not address the following water issues you may have.
– Public water pipes and leaks- call your local provider on water bill.
– Landowner dispute resolutions, however, we can provide guidance and recommendations.
– Water testing for cisterns and ponds. If for home drinking water contact the General Health District

National Resources Day!

Join the Clermont SWCD along with the Ohio Division of Wildlife, Ohio Division of Watercraft, Ohio Division of Parks, National Wild Turkey Federation, Clermont County Park District, The NWTF River Valley Longbeards and others during the Natural Resources Day which will be held Tuesday, July 26 at the Clermont County Fair in the Lykins Pavilion from Noon – 6:00 p.m.

Archery, BB-guns, reptiles, and other hands on exhibits will be on display.  Meet with representatives from local conservation clubs, Ohio Trappers Association, local sportsmen clubs and SWCD.  Representatives will be available to discuss natural resource related issues and how you can improve habitat on your land.

If you’re not able to visit during Natural Resources Day, please visit the Clermont SWCD booth in the Commercial Building or give us a call at (513) 732-7075.

Registration Open for Fall Master Rain Gardener Course

Registration is now open for Fall 2022 Master Rain Gardener Course. This is a 5-day course that takes place over six weeks. During the course, students are guided through the rain garden design and installation process by experienced regional professionals. At graduation, students will have created a beautiful rain garden and will be ready to educate their neighbors.

Course Details

9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

August 5, 12, 19, 26 and September 9

$50 registration fee

Location: Sanitation District No. 1 of Northern Kentucky, 1045 Eaton Drive, Ft. Wright, KY 41017

For additional information, registration, and to see a list of rotating host locations, visit www.cincyraingardener.org.

Food Waste Stinks!

Clermont SWCD conducted a series of food waste audits at schools around the county to assess how much food is thrown out in a lunch period. Food waste is a huge issue, especially for schools who bear the brunt of the costs not only in the food that is thrown away, but again when they pay for the waste to be hauled away. In addition to the financial strain of food waste, wasted food can be a hefty burden to the community since it means a loss of natural resources used for growing, processing, packing, and transporting.

In a series of four audits conducted at Pattison Elementary in Milford, and Merwin Elementary and West Clermont Middle School in the West Clermont School District, students were guided in the process of sorting, weighing, and analyzing how much food was thrown out in each lunch period. An average of 94lbs of food was wasted each lunch period or about half a pound of food waste per student. Milk was reported to be the highest wasted food item with a total of 152lbs thrown out across all four audits. Clermont SWCD staff plans to continue conducting audits through the next school year and work with the school districts to find ways to reduce the total waste generated.

Ohio River Sweep

The Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission’s (ORANSCO) Ohio River Sweep 2022 will be held on June 25, 2022 from 9 am to noon. The volunteer cleanup extends along the river and is a great volunteer opportunity for groups and individuals with cleanups in New Richmond and Moscow. For more information and registration, contact Penny at OhioRiverSweep@gmail.com.

Clermont SWCD Joins Ohio River Way During Trek Past Clermont County

Jake Hahn, Clermont SWCD, joined the group from Chilo Lock 34 to New Richmond.

A team of 20 modern day adventurers paddled 250 miles on the Ohio River from Portsmouth, OH to Louisville, KY from May 31 through June 9 to officially launch the Ohio River Way (ORW). This group is promoting recreation, connecting communities, and stimulating economic development along the Ohio River.

The Ohio River Way connects people and communities to opportunities for adventure on and along the Ohio River from Portsmouth, OH to West Point, KY. Planning for the ORW began in 2019 with support from the Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program of the National Park Service. Through its website (www.ohioriverway.org) the ORW provides information on river towns, river safety, and real time river conditions along with a master calendar of over 150 annual river town festivals and special events. The ORW’s award-winning Digital Guide to the Ohio River helps paddlers, cyclists, hikers, anglers, and motorists plan their adventures by providing information about boat ramps, marinas, campgrounds, bike trails, parks, historic sites, and other amenities.

“We look forward to celebrating the beauty and majesty of the Ohio River with dozens of communities along the Ohio River Way,” said Brewster Rhoads, Chair of the Ohio River Way Board. “Where else in America can you paddle, fish, water ski, hike, bike, and camp while touring Underground Railroad and Native American sites, historic river towns, 19th century architecture, picturesque Main Streets, farmers markets and dozens of breweries, wineries, and distilleries.”

2022 Spring Litter Wrap-up

2022 Winning Design by Ella Hurff

The 2022 Spring Litter Clean-up event was held on Saturday, April 23, with clean-ups at various sites across Clermont County and the East Fork Little Miami River watershed. Over 330 volunteers participated and collected a combined 380 bags of trash and 70+ tires. The Litter Cleanup event is coordinated each year by the Clermont Soil and Water Conservation District and the Valley View Foundation and partially supported with a grant from Ohio EPA, Division of Recycling and Litter Prevention. We truly appreciate the support from our event sponsor, the Southern Ohio Association of Realtors (SOAR). Thank you also to our partnering agencies and organizations, including the Adams/Clermont Soil Waste District, Clermont County Park District, Clermont Office of Public Information, Ohio Department of Natural Resources—Divisions of Parks and Watercraft, U.S. Army Corp of Engineers.

Ms. Ella Hurff, a 7th grade student at Milford Jr. High School, was the winner of the student design logo contest which is sponsored by SOAR to promote litter awareness and prevention in K-12th grade schools.  Ella’s design was selected from over 90 entries. For more information about future litter clean up events, email Connie Miller at Clermont Soil & Water Conservation District, or call 513.732.7075 ext. 2

Volunteers Build Demo Rain Garden at Local Restaurant

Home owners, business owners, and commercial property managers interested in storm water management practices can check out a rain garden at Bite Restaurant, 1279 State Route 131, Milford. Volunteers built the demonstration project on a beautiful Friday morning in June.

Rain gardens use native plants to manage storm water runoff, said Kat Zelak, Education Coordinator, Clermont Soil & Water Conservation District. They help water soak into soil faster, important because of the high clay content here.

Volunteers at the newly constructed rain garden at Bite Restaurant.

“Having storm water more quickly infiltrate the soil through the garden instead of running into streams and rivers allows pollutants to be removed in a natural way,” Zelak said.

Like the garden at Bite Restaurant, most sit at the end of downspouts. Others are located at the end of driveways, in low spots in yards or where the biggest need exists.

“They came to me, and I thought it was a great idea,” said Rachel Seeberger, who owns the restaurant with her husband Marc. Bite grows organic vegetables, herbs, fruits, and nuts on its two-acre property. Seeberger noted that she teaches classes on gardening and sustainability to garden clubs and schools. She welcomes having a visual to show how a rain garden works.

Zelak said the rain garden includes strawberries, blue flag iris, yarrow, ashy sunflower, New England aster, bee balm and purple cone flower.

Volunteers from Soil & Water, the Clermont County Office of Environmental Quality and Natural Resources Conservation Service helped plant the garden.

Rain Gardens Revisited

Once again, it’s been a long, cold winter, but spring is approaching and thoughts are turning to gardening. If you are planning some new landscaping around the house this year, you may want to consider a rain garden, which can be an attractive feature that also helps manage storm water runoff.

Rain gardens look like any other flower garden, but they are built in a shallow depression that is designed to collect rain water and slowly filter it into the ground over a period of a day or two. A typical rain garden planted with native wildflowers, shrubs or trees can soak up to 30% more water than a conventional lawn. Rain gardens also help to remove pollutants in storm water that are picked up from our lawns, rooftops, driveways and parking lots. In addition to the water quality benefits, rain gardens providing important habitat and food sources for birds, butterflies, and other wildlife.

Anyone can build a rain garden on their own. Creating one requires nothing more high tech than a shovel. To aid landowners in their quest to build their own garden, we have collaborated with local organizations to create the Greater Cincinnati Master Rain Gardener Course. The first session is already full, but you can add your name to the waitlist for future classes at www.cincyraingardener.org or join the Facebook group Greater Cincinnati Master Rain Gardeners for great ideas from fellow gardeners. Plenty of tips are also available on our web site at www.clermontswcd.org/rain-gardens-barrels/. And if you run in to problems – don’t give up. Just give us a call or shoot us an email and we’ll help you through it.