Conservation Currents - NVSWCD News

Conservation Currents is sent out quarterly in print and via email featuring a spectrum of conservation issues, information and updates.

To receive Conservation Currents, please contact us with your current mailing address or email address. You may also choose to receive (please specify when you contact us):

  • Watershed Calendar monthly emails, which include stream monitoring and other events;
  • Green Breakfast notifications, which include information about speaker events six times a year.

Current Issue

Community Conservation Success (CAP)

Conservation Landscaping Project at Chesterfield Mews The District's Conservation Assistance Program (CAP) provides technical expertise and funding for energy and watershed projects throughout the Northern Virginia region. Learn more about the program and what projects have taken place in Fairfax communities.

Seven Myths About Rain Gardens

Rain Garden during a storm A rain garden is a great way to handle runoff on your property, but it is important to do it right. Learn about some common rain garden myths and misconceptions.

Local Green Businesses Wanted!

Green Business Partners logo Know a great Fairfax County Green Business? Consider recommending them for the Green Business Partners program. Discover how program partners are contributing to the county's sustainability initiatives.

Naturally Occurring Asbestos in Fairfax County Soil

Asbestos map Commonly called greenstone, serpentinite is a rock that often comes in attractive olive and blue-green hues and can have a smooth, lustrous surface. In Fairfax County, it is found in the Piney Branch Formation, a wedge of metamorphic rock about 550 million years old. Serpentinite contains magnesium but may also contain another type of mineral: asbestos.

More Featured Articles

Discover Early Spring Wildflowers

Mayapple emerges. Credit: Gary Putnam, Arlington Regional Master Naturalists Looking forward to spring? Ready to open the windows for some fresh air and take a walk or bike ride on your favorite local trail? While you’re out, take a look at the splashes of color by the trailside and see if you recognize any of the early wildflowers. These spring ephemerals only bloom for a short time every spring.

It's Spring: Hold on to Your Fertilizer

Woman mows grass Contrary to popular practice, spring is not the time to fertilize your lawn. If you fertilize in early spring, the blades will grow at the expense of the roots developing. Extra fertilizer will run off into streams and rivers, polluting fisheries and local drinking water sources.

Home Turf: Virginia Healthy Lawns

Home Turf volunteer measures distance Virginia Cooperative Extension's Home Turf program brings Master Gardener expertise to the grasses in lawns across Northern Virginia.

Chickens in Your Backyard

A rooster and hen. Interest in locally grown food is on the rise, from urban gardening to backyard chicken operations. Can Fairfax County residents keep chickens? How can owners care for chickens? What is the best way to manage chicken waste?

Most Popular

Agriculture, Horse Farms

Five Steps to a Great Horse Pasture
Five Steps to a Great Horse Pasture
Establishing Your Horse Pasture
Heavy-Use Sacrifice Areas
Managing Horse Waste
No-Till Agriculture

Lawn Care and Gardens

Gardening & Lawn Care
Fall Is Crucial Time for Lawn Care
Weed Free Lawns—Naturally
Soil Test for Fertility
Don't Tidy Your Winter Landscape
In Spring, Hold On to Your Fertilizer


Ecosystems: A Bee on Butterflyweed
What's the Buzz on Bees?
Humans and Deer
What's Happening to Our Bats?
Vernal Pool Breeders
Create a Monarch Waystation
Limiting Lyme Disease - Naturally?

Plants and Trees

Flowering dogwood leaves in the fall. Credit: The Dow Gardens Archive, Midland, MI.
Early Wildflowers: Spring Ephemerals
Emerald Ash Borer Threat
Fall Color of Trees
How Do Trees Benefit Me?
Understanding Tree Roots


Enjoying and Restoring Our Streams
Fairfax County Plans to Protect Streams
How Healthy Is Your Stream?
Perennial Stream Mapping Completed

Pollution & Litter

Trash in a Dry Pond
Cigarette Butts Pollute
Heavy Metal Pollution
Picking Up Pet Waste
Drinking Smart: Bottled Water or Tap?
Household Hazardous Waste Disposal

Rain Gardens & Green Roofs

Rain Gardens
Seven Myths About Rain Gardens
Bringing Rain Gardens Home
Rain Garden Research
Herrity Green Roof


Understanding Stormwater Ponds
Building a Farm or Amenity Pond
Excess Aquatic Vegetation in Your Pond?
Maintaining Stormwater Ponds

Soil & Erosion

Sediment Basin - Erosion Control
Naturally Occurring Asbestos in Fairfax County Soil
The Five Most Interesting Soils of Fairfax County
Erosion and Sediment Control
Living Soil
Retaining Nutrients in Your Soil

Conservation Currents Archive

Agriculture & Horse Operations
Crimping Cover Crops
Frost Seeding for Horse Pastures
Sustainable Agriculture
Urbanization and Groundwater

Lawn Care and Gardens
Conservation Landscaping
Managing Soil Keeps Fields Green
Wake Up and Smell the...Mulch!

Wildlife and Habitat
Bluebirds: A Conservation Success
Help Keep Track of Turtles
Wildlife Habitat with Audubon at Home

Plants and Trees
Dogwoods' Critical Role in Forests
Poison Ivy: Avoiding It
Trees Promote Biodiversity
Urban Forestry, Past and Future

Low Impact Development
Low Impact Development
Providence Stormwater Project
What is Stormwater Runoff?

Caring for Backyard Streams
Little Pimmit Run Stream Restoration
Small Streams Help Clean Waterways
Urbanization and Stream Health
Volunteers Show Trees Help Streams

Mason District Stormwater Pond
Partners to Rehabilitate Pohick Dams
Reduced Mowing Policy

Soil & Erosion
Can Soil Reduce Global Warming?
Ground Penetrating Radar
Medicines from the Soil
Pamunkey: State Soil of Virginia
Phytoremediation: Plants & Polluted Soil
Soil Formation and Classification
Soil Survey Update
What’s to Blame for Accelerated Erosion?

Pollution & Litter
E. coli Monitoring on Four Mile Run
Litter in Our Storm Drain System
Snow Aftermath: Trees, Sand and Salt
Top 10 Recycling Tips
Toxic Cleaners, Alternatives
Where Does Wastewater Go?

Stewardship & Conservation
Community Conservation Success (CAP)
Local Green Businesses Wanted!
Car Washing the Right Way
Conservation Easements
Encroachment Threatens Parks
Fairfax County Rain Barrel Workshops
Faith & Sustainability in Mount Vernon
Identify & Prevent Pollution
Only Rain Down the Storm Drain!

Energy Conservation and Green Building
Energy Fair: Geothermal and Solar
Here Comes the Electric Car
ReBuild: Green Building & Green Jobs
Solar: Local Efforts
Waste to Energy

Reprinting of material from Conservation Currents is encouraged. Please give credit as follows:
"Reprinted from Conservation Currents, Northern Virginia Soil & Water Conservation District."

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