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The Geronimo Flow

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The Geronimo and Alligator Creeks Watershed Partnership was formed in 2010 to restore and protect water quality in the Geronimo and Alligator Creeks Watershed due to elevated levels of bacteria and nitrate-nitrogen.

The Partnership completed a Watershed Protection Plan in 2012 and is now working toward full implementation.  The purpose of this newsletter is to inform and engage local stakeholders in helping to improve and protect the quality of water in Geronimo and Alligator Creeks. For more information about the project visit our website: www.geronimocreek.org
 

Geronimo Creek at Laubach Road.

Healthy Lawns Healthy Waters Program

  • Are you interested in learning more about rainwater harvesting?
  • Would you like to learn about the best type of grass and landscaping to have in your yard?
  • Do you know how much fertilizer should you buy and what kind?
  • Do you want a chance to win a free 50 gallon rain barrel?
  • Would you like a free soil analysis to let you know the nutrient content of your soil?

If you can answer yes to any of these questions, you should come to the Healthy Lawns Healthy Waters Program, Tuesday August 29, from 11am till 4pm at the Irma Lewis Seguin Outdoor Learning Center, 1865 US Highway 90 East, Seguin.

The program is free and lunch is provided, but seating is limited, so please RSVP to Ward Ling at wling@tamu.edu or call 979-845-6980. The program will include a walking tour of a functioning 5,000 gallon rainwater harvesting system and turf grass demonstration plots.

The Healthy Lawns and Healthy Waters Program aims to improve and protect surface water quality by enhancing awareness and knowledge of best management practices. Attendees will learn about the design and installation of residential rainwater harvesting systems and appropriate turf and landscape species based on local conditions.

One of the speakers at the event, Dr. Ben Wherley, associate professor in Texas A&M University soil and crop sciences department, recommends management practices such as proper irrigation delivery equipment, interpreting soil tests, and understanding nutrient applications to help reduce nutrient runoff and provide additional landscape irrigation water.  

Dr. Jake Mowrer, assistant professor-soil nutrient & water resource management specialist, recommends proper fertilizer application, based upon soil testing.  The importance of having your soil tested to determine its nutrient content cannot be overemphasized.  Once you have this information, then proper fertilizer selection can be made and applied at the recommended rate.  Dr. Mowrer will also be available at the program for any questions regarding fertilizer and water use in grasses, lawns, and ornamental gardens.

Residents can pick up a soil sample bag with sampling instructions from their local AgriLife Extension offices in Guadalupe and Comal counties. Bags will be available two weeks before the event and should be turned in the day of the training.

Soil samples will be submitted to the AgriLife Extension Soil, Water and Forage Testing Lab for routine analysis, including pH, conductivity, nitrate-nitrogen and other parameters. The program will review how to understand soil test results and nutrient recommendations so residents can interpret results once the analysis is mailed to them after the event.  The soil sample bag and analyses are free to Healthy Lawns and Healthy Waters Program participants.

Ward Ling, Geronimo and Alligator Creeks Watershed coordinator, will present important updates on watershed protection plan activities to improve and protect water quality in Geronimo and Alligator creeks.  For more information about the Geronimo and Alligator Creeks WPP, go to www.geronimocreek.org/.

Funding for the Healthy Lawns and Healthy Waters Program is provided in part through Clean Water Act 319 grants from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The project is managed by the Texas Water Resources Institute, part of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, AgriLife Extension and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Texas A&M University.
 
Texas Well Owner Workshop coming to New Braunfels Civic Convention Center September 26.

Private Water Well Owner Workshop

If you depend on a private well to supply your drinking or irrigation water, then this workshop is just for you. 
The Texas Well Owner Network (TWON) is a free, one-day educational training for Texas residents who depend on household wells for their water needs. It is for private well owners who want to become familiar with groundwater resources, septic system maintenance, well maintenance, water conservation, water quality and water treatment.

As part of the program participants can bring their well water samples to be screened for nitrate-nitrogen, total dissolved solids, and E. coli bacteria for $10.

Pick up approved sample containers with instructions on how to properly collect a sample at either the Comal or Guadalupe County Texas A&M AgriLife Extension offices.

Seating is limited, so please RSVP online, or by contacting Dr. Drew Gholson, TWON Program Coordinator at 979-845-1461.

Bring your samples and payment of $10 to the training on September 26.

Do you know when it is time to have your septic system pumped?

Homeowner Septic System Workshop October 17 in Seguin

  • When is the last time you had your septic system pumped--and, do you really need to?
  • Ever wonder what goes on inside that mystery thing out back?
  • Is the additive you are flushing down the drain actually helping?
Come get the answers to these and many other questions! Also, if you are a homeowner with an aerobic septic system in Guadalupe County, this class will certify you to operate your system without the requirement for a contract with a service provider.

Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service will present a one-day class focusing on aerobic systems scheduled for 8:30 am until 4:00 Tuesday, October 17th.  The class is free and will be held at the Guadalupe County AgriLife Extension office at 210 E. Live Oak Street in Seguin.

This class will focus on the operation and maintenance activities of aerobic systems, and will certify homeowners in Guadalupe County to maintain their own system. Topics covered will include treatment processes, health and safety considerations, how to inspect and maintain the system, and instruction on how activities in the home can impact the system. The course will provide answers to some of the most frequently asked questions, including when to pump out a tank, and what should not go down the drain.

Seating is limited, so registration is required to reserve a seat. To register for the class, contact Ling at 979-845-6980 or wling@tamu.edu.  For more information about septic systems, go to http://ossf.tamu.edu/

This class is free to homeowners due to a Clean Water Act grant provided to Texas A&M AgriLife Extension by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board and US EPA.
Pervious pavement at the Irma Lewis Seguin Outdoor Learning Center.

Smart Growth Workshop November 1

A Smart Growth Workshop is scheduled for Wednesday, November 1, at the Irma Lewis Seguin Outdoor Learning Center. The workshop is free and will include in-class presentations and outdoor demonstrations. Lunch will be provided at no cost, but attendees must register to reserve a seat. 

Workshop topics will include discussion on the linkage between land-use types, water quality and community character, and how to reduce stormwater runoff volume and improve water quality through use of low-impact development (LID) structures and practices.  The use of permeable pavement, rain gardens, vegetated swales, ‘curbless’ streets and others features to enhance flood control are just some of the structures and practices that will be discussed.

Dr. Fouad Jaber, AgriLife Extension specialist in integrated water resources management, will explain how different LID techniques can help mitigate the harmful effects of urbanization on stormwater volume and water quality. 

Dr. Jake Mowrer, AgriLife Extension soil nutrient & water resource management--talk about the turf plots

The workshop will also include a site tour of a 5,000 gallon rainwater harvesting system, permeable pavement, a rain garden, and a vegetated swale as well as a walking tour of Geronimo Creek. The walking tour will also feature a turf plot demonstration area that is a side-by-side comparison of various common turf grass selections and their water demands.

Seven hours of American Institute of Certified Planners credits will be available.  
For more information and to register for the workshop, contact Ling at 979-845-6980 or wling@tamu.edu
 

A Clean Water Act grant was provided to Texas A&M AgriLife Extension by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to implement the Geronimo and Alligator Creeks Watershed Protection Plan.

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Contact:
Ward Ling
wling@tamu.edu
979-845-6980
http://www.geronimocreek.org/

The members of Texas A&M AgriLife will provide equal opportunities in programs and activities, education, and employment to all persons regardless of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, sexual orientation or gender identity and will strive to achieve full and equal employment opportunity throughout Texas A&M AgriLife.

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