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Winona County Soil & Water Conservation District

 P.O. Box 39, 400 Wilson Street

 Lewiston, MN 55952

 Phone: (507) 523-2171 Ext. 3

Winona Co. SWCD:

Clean Water Land & Legacy Amendment

Providing Conservation Assistance in Winona County Since 1938

History of Winona Co. SWCD

Vision Statement:

To encourage preservation and conservation of the natural resources of Winona County through advocating sustainable use and respect of the uniqueness and aesthetic value of our landscape for present and future generations.

SWCDs (Soil and Water Conservation Districts) are local units of government that manage and direct natural resource management programs at the local level.

 Minnesota’s 91 SWCDs cover the entire state and generally follow county lines.

What is an SWCD?

SWCD Background:

BWSR on SWCDs SWCD Operational Handbook Supervisor's Handbook

What Are Your Conservation Needs?

Stop by the SWCD office with your conservation needs:

Staff is on hand to discuss your situation or we can come out and take a look at the problem and offer potential solutions.  If it is beyond our technical expertise we will do our best to connect you with someone who can help.

In addition to technical assistance, there may be financial assistance available for your conservation needs.  There are a few options for financial assistance available through the SWCD or others through our partner agency the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS).

Although there are a number of financial assistance options available, not all projects are eligible and funds are limited.  Funding for conservation work is not always immediately available, so contact us early to allow time to acquire funding. Some funds only approve project funding once or twice a year.  For others, we may need to put together a list of specific projects, cost estimates, and environmental benefits of these projects and submit an application for funding.

The application process could take up to a year from start to finish and are highly competitive, often with less than 10% of the applicants being funded statewide.

For information on the various programs and practices we are most often involved with, go to the following link: SWCD Programs

You can email the Winona County SWCD, or contact us at (507)523-2171, extension:

108 for Lance Klessig

114 for Amanda Gentry

112 for Daryl Buck

Mission Statement:

We are a locally elected unit of government promoting soil and water conservation and environmental protection through landowner assistance, educational and planning activities, and coordination of public and private efforts and by serving as a forum on natural resource issues.

Ag Certainty Program Goes Statewide:

Landowners throughout the state of Minnesota have an opportunity to become certified that they meet current water quality goals and standards.  This is part of a project called the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP).  To learn more about this program, contact Mark Root at Winona County SWCD:


Or go to MAWQCP

The Latest News…

Winona County SWCD Conservation Legacy Scholarship:

The Winona County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) would like to congratulate Ethan Greden as the 2017 recipient of their Conservation Legacy Scholarship.  Ethan’s long list of interests in the outdoors, his years of participation in 4-H and his numerous awards and degrees in FFA, including Natural Resource Science, makes him a great representative of what this scholarship is about.

More information, click here

More News…!

Major Watersheds of

Winona County:

Winona County is covered by three major watersheds:

Mississippi River - Winona: including the Whitewater, Trout Run (St. Charles & Elba Township), Beaver, Trout Valley (Mount Vernon Township) and Adams; Latsch; Deering, Speltz, Straight, Bear, Rupprecht, Rollingstone and Middle Valley; Peterson, Garvin, and Stockton Valley; Gilmore and Lake Winona; West and East Burns (Wilson Township); Pleasant; Homer; Cedar; and Big & Little Trout (Pickwick).

Root River: including Trout Run and Money (Saratoga Township); Pine (Fremont & Hart Townships), Hemmingway and Coolridge; Ferguson, Rush and Ahrensfeld; Gernander, Schueler, Wiscoy, Money, Hippie and Corey; Campbell; Looney; and Silver.

Mississippi River - La Crescent: including Pine (Pleasant Hill & New Hartford Township), Rose Valley, Lane Valley, Richmond, Miller, Dakota and Burns Valley (Dresbach Township).

Board Meeting June 14th  

Winona Co. SWCD Honors

Dell Farm LLC as 2016

Outstanding Conservationist

Click here to learn more.

Local Farmer Participates in Governor Dayton’s Town Hall Water Summit 2017

Larry and Nancy Greden represented dairy and crop farmers in SE MN at the Governor Dayton Town Hall Water Summit 2017 on the University of MN Morris campus January 27, 2017.  Thank you to the Greden’s for showing that we are all concerned about protecting our soil and water, and we can continue to farm our land while still protecting it.

You can watch the the entire summit on YouTube, and watch for the Greden’s from the 2 hour 40 minute mark to the 3 hour, 40 minute mark; click on the link below:


(You may need to turn up the volume on the video.)

Root River Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan

Soils Information…


Are you looking for soils information on your property?  The most up to date information can be found at the Web Soil Survey (WSS) web site hosted by the USDA Natural Resource Conservation District (NRCS).  Go to the link below and click on the large green button that says



Minnesota’s 2015 Buffer Law:

Winona County Buffer Law and Shoreland Ordinance require a 50 foot vegetative buffer along all public waters.

SWCDs across the state will be assisting landowners in complying with the 2015 MN Buffer Law.

Winona County SWCD preliminary reviews show Winona County residents at almost 80% compliance.

(Field reviews this spring and summer will likely find even higher compliance numbers.)

Landowners of parcels still in question will be receiving a letter in the spring of 2017.

Landowners on public waters must be in compliance by November 1, 2017

More Buffer Law Information

DNR “Public Waters” Mapping

For information on “Public Waters” go to: http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/buffers/index.html

Winona Co. SWCD Welcomes New Conservation Corps MN Apprentice

Sara Rother will be assisting the Winona Co. SWCD with Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) over the summer of 2017.