August 2021
In 2021 we celebrate the 69th year of the Ocean County Soil Conservation District. We remain committed to building and sustaining a conservation legacy by working with our partners and constituents to conserve, protect and restore our soil, water and natural resources by providing technical assistance, implementing restoration projects, and most importantly through education.
Lakewood Basin Stormwater Retrofit Project
FirstEnergy Park Stormwater Basin
Native seeds are drilled into the soil of the stormwater basin at FirstEnergy Park, using the no-till Kasco Versa-Drill, as part of the Lakewood Township Stormwater Basin Retrofit Project. (Photo by Eileen Miller)
The Lakewood Township Stormwater Basin Retrofit Project has completed its first seeding operation at the FirstEnergy Park basin, home of the Lakewood Blue Claws. Native grass seeds were drilled into the basin using South Jersey Resource Conservation & Development Council's newly purchased no-till Kasco Versa-Drill. The unique design of the Kasco Versa-Drill makes it durable enough for use in no-till conditions on the most uneven terrain and offers exact placement of seed, ensuring direct contact with the soil and improved germination results. The Kasco Versa-Drill is able to create an opening in the soil, deposit the seed, and close the opening while completing a single pass. The use of no-till drills for basin retrofit projects promotes maximum soil conservation by limiting water and wind exposure reducing potential for soil erosion. (Photo: Kasco Versa drill seed box. By Eileen Miller) 
The seed box of the Kasco Versa-Drill is also compatible with the “fluffy” seeds of native grasses proposed within the retrofit design. Species include Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii), Virginia Wild Rye (Elymus virginicus), Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum), and Indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans). These species are fast growing and considered superb for erosion control and stabilization. Seaside Goldenrod (Solidago sempervirens), a native flowering perennial, was added to the seed mix to provide fall color, nectar for migrating Monarchs and other butterflies and pollinators, as well as seed for songbirds, including Pine Siskin, American Goldfinch and sparrows. The seed mix is supplied by Pinelands Nursery. (Photo: Mixture of native grass seed. By Eileen Miller)
The Lakewood Township Stormwater Basin Retrofit Project (WM20-008) is funded by a Federal 319(h) Water Quality Restoration grant awarded by the NJ Department of
Environmental Protection, granted to the South Jersey Resource Conservation &
Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii)
Virginia Wild Rye (Elymus virginicus)
Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum)
Indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans)
Seaside Goldenrod (Solidago sempervirens)
Pine Siskin feeding on Seaside Goldenrod seeds
Jersey-Friendly by Design
Join us for our Jersey-Friendly Yards summer webinar series
Our July-September webinar series, "Jersey-Friendly by Design", will teach you how to use landscape design principles to plan gardens that are both wildlife-friendly and aesthetically pleasing. All programs take place on the second Tuesday of the month, July, August and September, at 7:00pm. Free! Registration required - click each program link below.
August 10, 2021
Presented by Elaine Silverstein, Horticulturist
Creating a Jersey-Friendly yard requires understanding what a habitat is and how its parts fit together. This program by Elaine Silverstein starts with a basic model of a native habitat garden and describes, step by step, how to create a garden that is both beautiful and welcoming to insects, birds, and other wildlife. The focus is on practical information: what is a native plant? Which native plants are best adapted to my site? How can I find native plants? How do I lay out the garden? How do I care for it once it’s installed? Elaine will provide a Resource List that includes sites to visit, references, and sources of native plants. (Photo: Monarda sp., Oenothera sp., Asclepius sp., by Elaine Silverstein)
September 14, 2021
Presented by Becky Laboy, M.Ed., Education Outreach Specialist, Ocean County Soil Conservation District
Designing a successful Jersey-Friendly garden begins with an understanding of the basic elements that support plant growth – soil, water and light. Knowing these conditions in your yard will help guide your species selection and your overall garden design. Becky will provide you with information, tools and resources to assess these conditions in your yard, offer suggestions for appropriate plant species selection, and share ways to design your garden based on the soil, water and light conditions in your yard. (Photo: Jersey-Friendly Garden, by Becky Laboy)
In case you missed our July webinar, click to view a recording of Designing Gardens to Support the Native Web of Life, presented by Bruce Crawford, State Program Leader for Home and Public Horticulture, NJ Agricultural Experiment Station. Password: Design#1  (Photo: Helianthus angustifolium, by Bruce Crawford)
Evesham Green Team Hosted Jersey-Friendly Yards
In July, the Evesham Green Team hosted a Jersey-Friendly Yards webinar: Jersey-Friendly Yards - Landscaping for a Healthy Community with Native Plants, presented by Becky Laboy, M.Ed., Education Outreach Specialist, Ocean County Soil Conservation District. View a recording on the Ocean County Soil Conservation District YouTube channel.
Host Your Own Jersey-Friendly Yards Webinar
Calling all Green Teams, Environmental Commissions and Garden Clubs! Is your "Green Group" interested in hosting a Jersey-Friendly Yards webinar for your constituents? We'll provide a free 1 hour webinar discussing the importance of landscaping for a healthy environment. We'll start by introducing the tools and resources on the Jersey-Friendly Yards website, explain how to get your soil tested, introduce water conservation practices, suggest appropriate native plants, and offer ways to attract and support pollinators and wildlife. Contact Karen Walzer and Becky Laboy to schedule a program.
Visit our website:
For more information about education programs, events and projects pertaining to soil, water, native gardening and natural resource conservation, please contact Becky Laboy, M.Ed., Education Outreach Specialist, Ocean County Soil Conservation District: