Welcome to Marion County Soil and Water Conservation District
What’s New in Indianapolis, IN?
Welcome to our website! We hope you will find the layout easy to use. Take a few minutes to tour the site. If you have any suggestions for changes or additional information, please let us know. We want this site to be as useful as possible for you.
For future visits you will find the newest updates right here on our home page and also under the “News” tab above.
The Soil Health Mini-Grants intend to facilitate soil and water conservation on land in Marion and Hendricks counties. The goal of the program is to encourage our soil to function ecologically well and bring healing to the land through conservation practices and soil health education. Eligible practices include soil health assessments, cover crops, and a native plant component for the protection of pollinators. Applications are now being accepted!
Please review the Mini-Grant Guidance document prior to applying. Click below to download the Mini-Grant Guidance document –
The application link is contained within the guidance document, or you can apply here. For any questions, please contact your SWCD.
The Marion County SWCD’s quarterly newsletters and annual report will now only be available online in order to conserve resources. You can find our newsletters under the NEWS tab on our website or we will email a copy to you upon request.
To be added to our email list please contact Marilyn at
Come Meet New Soil Health Program
& Urban Soil Health Specialist Kevin Allison
Kevin serves as Marion County Soil and Water Conservation District’s Urban Soil Health Specialist. He is focused on assisting land users in applying the principles of Soil Health to gardens and small farms for the benefit of soil function and the environment. His background includes work with conservation cropping systems in large-scale agriculture as well as 3 years of service in the Peace Corps Dominican Republic’s Community Environmental Development sector. Kevin holds a BS in Environmental Science from Indiana University. He serves on the Southwest Regional Soil Health Team and the Inter-agency Working Group for alternative and organic agriculture. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Marion County SWCD office at 317-786-1776.
Visit our website often this spring to jump in on the benefits and cost share opportunities that are developing through the urban soil health program. You will be able to find Soil Health information under the Agriculture tab at the top of this web page.
IUPUI offers Soils Class
The SWCD highly recommends IUPUI’s soils class for everyone! Soil affects our lives in so many ways, whether we grow vegetables or flowers in our yards, plant trees, build a home, or have a septic system — the soil we live on makes a difference! Come learn how to make good decisions based on the type of soil we are working with. You will save time, money and maybe save yourself a whole lot of aggravation by knowing and using your soil type according to its natural characteristics.
Register Now! Click the link below for more information:
What to do if you find a baby or injured animal
Every spring, kind-hearted Hoosiers “rescue” an injured or seemingly abandoned baby wild animal and try to care for it.
The DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife has one thing to say: Don’t do it.
In early April, cottontail rabbits and squirrels have young in their nests. If you come across a nest, leave it alone, even if you don’t see an adult animal around. The best place for these animals is in the wild, learning to fend for themselves.
“Most baby animals are not abandoned,” said Michelle Cain, DNR wildlife information specialist. “Many animals leave their young alone when searching for food and come back to them throughout the day. They also use this as a way to deter predators because a predator may follow the mother back to its young.”
Picking up a baby animal that is not orphaned or abandoned can harm the animal and takes it out of its natural environment. It’s also illegal.
If you believe the animal is truly abandoned, or you know that the mother is dead, call a licensed wildlife rehabilitator. Licensed wildlife rehabilitators are educated to properly care for wild animals. In the hands of an untrained person, an animal is unlikely to survive if it is returned to the wild.
Wild animals also pose safety and health risks for humans. They may look helpless, cute and cuddly, but they can bite or scratch people who attempt to handle them. Some wild animals carry parasites and infectious diseases that can be transmitted to humans.
The best way to make sure an animal is orphaned is to wait and check it periodically. If you are unsure, place some strings or sticks across the nest. Place some grass across the top of a rabbit nest that is found with young in it. If such items are later disturbed, the mother has probably returned, so leave the young animal alone.
If a bird has fallen out of a nest, it is OK to gently return it to the nest.
Rehabilitator contact information is at dnr.IN.gov/dnr/fishwild/5492.htm. Click on “wildlife rehabilitator” near the bottom of the page for a list. Assistance can also be found by:
–Calling the DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife in Indianapolis at (317) 232-4080
–Calling DNR Law Enforcement, 24 hours a day at (812) 837-9536
–Calling a licensed veterinarian
State laws prohibit keeping wild animals without a DNR-issued permit. Federal laws also prohibit possession of migratory birds, including songbirds, raptors and waterfowl. It is illegal to treat wild animals for sickness or injury without a permit.
In the spring, ducks or geese often nest in landscaping or gardens. Leave the nest alone and keep any pets away. Be aware that the bird may return next year. If the bird becomes a nuisance, call a nuisance waterfowl control operator. A contact list is at dnr.IN.gov/fishwild/files/fw-NuisanceWaterfowlControlOperators.pdf.
Lend a Hand – Farmers Helping Urban Farmers Program
The Fall Creek Watershed Project has initiated a program to help urban farmers, gardeners and conservationists share their needs with their rural farming neighbors. Urban gardening projects who are in need of a variety of materials have created a list of their needs. Rural farmers, horse and poultry owners, gardening centers and other who wish to help supply these needs can contact Leslie White, Backyard Conservation Coordinator for the Fall Creek Watershed Project ( email@example.com). While this project is initially being started to help projects in the Fall Creek watershed, it is hoped that the idea will soon spread to other counties and communities.
Check our Small Farms website page often for updates on how you can help. For more information click HERE.
Water Water Everywhere! Standing Water – Wet Crawlspace – Flooding Basement ???
If all the rain we’ve been having lately is causing drainage problems our website can get you started on the road to a solution.
Phone Number for Citizens Energy Group for Community Drainage Concerns
Please make a note of the new Citizens Energy Group contact number: 924-3311. Residents with flooding, storm water issues, manhole cover capping recess concerns or other water issues, this is the number to call. Citizens Energy Group is responsible for maintaining city storm drains. For technical assistance with drainage problems on private property you can continue to contact the Soil & Water Conservation District 786-1776.