Grass Planting Assistance:
Side-by-Side Comparison of Programs
AgBMP Loan Program

Grass Planting Loan: In counties where Grass Planting qualifies for AgBMP Loans and funds are available, the loan has a 3% interest rate and helps finance the purchase of supplies and services needed to establish grass cover, including the purchase or rental of specialized equipment. AgBMP loans may be combined with Grass planting incentives or cost share payments from other programs. 

AgBMP loan applications are typically accepted year-round. To inquire, contact your local Soil & Water Conservation District.

 



CRP General Signup

Grass Planting Payment: The payment consists of several parts: A land rental payment is received annually for the 10-15 year life of the contract. In 2008, CRP rental rates for this practice in Minnesota range from $37.90 to $155.88 per acre. A one-time cost-share payment covers 50% of the cost of eligible products and services necessary to establish and maintain the practice, such as seed and site preparation. A mid-contract maintenance payment defrays the cost of required management activities. 

See CRP General Signup – Grass Planting Payment Details for more information, including land rental rates by county (Appendix A) and a list of products/services eligible for cost-share for this practice (Appendix B).

To inquire, contact your local USDA Farm Service Agency office.



CRP Continuous Signup (CCRP)

Grass Planting Payment: The payment consists of several parts: A land rental payment plus an additional 10% rental rate incentive payment is received annually for the 10-15 year life of the contract.  (In 2008, CRP rental rates for this practice in Minnesota ranged from $41.69 to $171.47 per acre). A one-time cost-share payment covers 50% of the cost of eligible products and services necessary to establish and maintain the practice, such as seed and site preparation. Two one-time special incentive payments are received up front -- a Signup Incentive Payment of $10/acre per year enrolled (up to 10 years) and a Practice Incentive Payment equal to 40% of the total eligible cost of establishing the practice. A mid-contract maintenance payment defrays the cost of required management activities.

Note: We have categorized several CCRP practices as “Grass Planting”. Not all of these practices are available for every incentive listed above. See CCRP – Grass Planting Payment Details for more information, including land rental rates by county (Appendix A) and a list of products/services eligible for cost-share for this practice (Appendix B).

To inquire, contact your local USDA Farm Service Agency office.



Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP)
* payment information not currently available

Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP)

EQIP payments for Grass Planting: are provided on a one-time basis as part of the following practices: Contour Buffer Strips, Field Border, Habitat Restoration, Grass Filter Strip, Grass Waterway, Pasture & Hay Planting, Rare & Declining Habitat and critical-area plantings in conjunction with practices such as Wetland Restoration. These one-time payments may include $7.02/acre for mechanical weed control up to 5 times during the first 2 years as needed to establish the new grass. Higher payment rates apply to Historically Underserved Participants. See EQIP Grass Planting payment details for more information.

 

EQIP applications are accepted anytime but there are deadlines for each funding cycle, typically one or two a year. To inquire, contact your local USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service or Soil & Water Conservation District office.

 



Grassland Reserve Program (GRP)

Grass Planting Payment:  The GRP program provides payments for permanent easements or rental agreements (10, 15 or 20-year) on eligible, existing grassland (including pasture) and may in some cases provide cost share payments for grassland restoration.

To inquire, contact your local USDA Farm Service Agency office.



RIM Reserve

Grass Planting Payment Summary: The payment consists of two components, an easement payment and a cost share payment. For perpetual easements, the RIM program pays landowners 90% of the Assessor’s Township Average Market Value of the land enrolled. The RIM program pays 100% of the eligible costs of establishing grass cover, up to $300/acre for native grasses and $150/acre for introduced grasses.

See RIM Reserve – Grass Planting Payment Details for more information.

To inquire, contact your local Soil & Water Conservation District.   



Local & Regional Programs

Special financial incentives are sometimes offered to landowners in a particular county or watershed for selected conservation practices for a limited time – usually as part of a special initiative funded by a federal or state grant. To find out if any special conservation incentives are offered in your area at this time, contact your local Soil & Water Conservation District, watershed organization, county, Resource Conservation & Development office or other local contacts.

For examples of special local & regional offers or information about the enabling grant programs, click on Local & Regional Programs at the top of this column.

 

 



Other Programs

To browse other potential sources of financial or free technical assistance for Grass Planting click on Other ProgramsFarmland & Open Space Preservation programs, especially The Nature Conservancy and the Grassland Reserve Program; Native Prairie programs, especially the Native Buffer Cost ShareWildlife & Habitat programs, especially Landowner Incentive Program and Grasslands for Tomorrow; Sustainable Ag & Working Land programs, especially the AgBMP Loan and Carbon Credit programs; and Renewable Energy & Energy Conservation programs, especially the CRP Biomass Production and RIM Clean Energy programs. at the top of this column, with special attention to: program;