Watershed NOW's Blog links to newspaper articles and other significant updates.  The Blog will post the most current information at the top of the page. 

Watershed NOW

NC non-profit that focuses on preserving and improving water quality of Big Elkin Creek

Posted 10 weeks ago
Posted 10 weeks ago
Posted 10 weeks ago
Posted 10 weeks ago

Summer Meditation 2017

We have to look deeply at things in order to see. When a swimmer enjoys the clear water of the river, he or she should also be able to be the river.  One day, during one of my first visits to the United States, I was having lunch at Boston University with some friends, and I looked down at the Charles River.  I have been away from home for quite a long time, and seeing the river, I found it very beautiful.  So I left my friends and went down to wash my face and dip my feet in the water, as we used to do in our country.  When I returned, a professor said, “That’s a very dangerous thing to do.  Did you rinse your mouth in the river?”  When I told him yes, he said, “You should see a doctor and get a shot.”

I was shocked.  I hadn’t known that the rivers here were so polluted.  Some of them are called “dead rivers.”  In our country the rivers get very muddy sometimes, but not that kind of dirty.  Someone told me that the Rhine River in Germany contains so many chemicals that it is possible to develop photographs in it.  If we want to continue to enjoy our river – to swim in them, walk beside the, even drink their water – we have to adopt the non-dual perspective.  We have to meditate on being the river so that we can experience within ourselves the fears and hopes of the river.  If we cannot feel the rivers, the mountains, the air, the animals, and other people from within their own perspective, the rivers will die and we will lose our chance for peace.  

PEACE IS EVERY STEP

The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life

Foreword by H. H. the Dalai Lama

Posted 16 weeks ago

Friends of the Big Elkin Creek Update    2/2017

Greetings neighbors,

 On behalf of Friends of Big Elkin Creek (FOBEC) we write to let you know of the significant progress that has been made since some of us met together at our opening event at Elkin Creek Vineyard on Aug. 25. We were excited about the turnout and about the quality of the interaction of that first gathering. Since the increasing sedimentation problem in Big Elkin Creek was ranked as your highest concern, we began working on a priority list of projects that will have the most impact on improving water quality.

 That night we extended an invitation to you to be in partnership with us about how we can work together to preserve and protect this great natural resource that is Big Elkin Creek. Now we want to let you know what our partnerships with you are bringing about. Consultation with area farmers has already generated very significant progress toward reducing the sedimentation problem in Big Elkin Creek. Find a summary below.

 52 acres of newly cleared land were conventionally planted to corn and soybeans during 2016.  Thanks to the on-going cooperation of this farmer/ landowner those fields in 2017 will be no-till planted into small grain for a net reduction of 832 tons of soil loss. 70 acres of tobacco have been fall seeded in 2016-17 with small grain winter cover.  The plan is to plant a fall cover crop after tobacco each year.  Ultimately we wish to start a rotation of tobacco and a no-till crop.   This will net a reduction of 485 tons of soil loss. 124 acres of tobacco will be strip cropped with alternating rows of tobacco & grass beginning in the 2017 growing season.  The rotation will consist of 2 years tobacco 2 years grass then alternate the strips. This will net a reduction of 967 tons of soil loss. 44 acres of tobacco are being placed in a 4 year rotation of 2 years tobacco, 2 years no-till corn and beans.  This will net a reduction of 568 tons of soil loss. Over the life of the rotation cycle (2-4 years) this results in a total of 2,852 tons of soil loss reduction.

 We are continuing to work to build new relationships of trust and cooperation with other farmers and landowners so that we can add more acres to our conservation planning and further reduce the sedimentation problem. In addition we are working with the Town of Elkin where we have identified two large sites where water runoff detention systems have failed and are compromising the water quality of Big Elkin Creek. The Town of Elkin is now working with the owners who were unaware of the failures and are cooperating to get these systems repaired.

 We look forward to future partnerships with you as work together to preserve and protect Big Elkin Creek. The next planning meeting of FOBEC group will be on Feb. 28 at 2pm at Elkin Presbyterian Church. If you would like to be involved at that level, we welcome your participation.

Sincerely,

 Michael Pardue 

 Wilkes City Soil and Water  

Posted 32 weeks ago
Posted 33 weeks ago

Students in action!

Photos of the 5th grade EES classes working on the watershed improvements along creek banks. 

Posted 33 weeks ago
Posted 33 weeks ago

Watershed NOW (NC)

On February 21st members of Watershed NOW and 5th graders from Elkin Primary School completed a stream restoration project on a small stream in Elkin Municipal Park (North Carolina).

The bank of the stream as it entered a new culvert under the walking tract needed further stabilization and the students planted “live stakes”, cuttings from the trees nearby that had been planted 2 years ago to stabilize that part of the creek. 

These photos show the before photo (erosion occurring) and the after photo, ensuring future stability of our watershed and clean water solutions. www.watershednownc.com 

Posted 33 weeks ago