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4 brown cows standing in a green pasture.

Grow More Grass

USDA-Farm Service Agency (FSA) and USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) are two federal agencies that work with farmers to implement national conservation practices through local offices and contacts. FSA serves farmers, ranchers and agricultural partners through the delivery of effective, efficient agricultural programs for all Americans. USDA-NRCS provides farmers, ranchers, and woodland landowners with financial and technical assistance to voluntarily put conservation on the ground.

USDA Farm Service Agency logo
USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service logo

Conservation Reserve Program

Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is a land conservation program administered by FSA. In exchange for a yearly rental payment, farmers enrolled in the program agree to remove environmentally sensitive land from agricultural production and plant species that will improve environmental health and quality. Contracts for land enrolled in CRP are 10-15 years in length. The long-term goal of the program is to re-establish valuable land cover to help improve water quality, prevent soil erosion, and reduce loss of wildlife habitat.


Signed into law in 1985, CRP is one of the largest private-lands conservation program in the United States. Thanks to voluntary participation by farmers and landowners, CRP has improved water quality, reduced soil erosion, and increased habitat for endangered and threatened species.​

Front cover of "Choosing Your CRP Journey" brochure.

The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) provides landowners with a way to earn a guaranteed income in exchange for protecting environmentally sensitive land with long-term land cover.

Experiences with CRP are as unique as the land they protect. Landowners select different programs, requirements and options to create a CRP plan that fits both their land and their goals.

It can be a complicated journey, so this booklet aims to help you on your way.

Environmental Quality Incentives Program

EQIP is a program run by NRCS to provide financial and technical assistance to deliver environmental benefits such as improved water quality, increased soil health, reduced erosion, or improved and created wildlife habitat. This program offers private landowners the chance to voluntarily implement conservation practices and NRCS co-invests in these practices with you. If a project is funded, it results in a one-time payment to help implement your chosen practice. Examples of practices commonly used in WI include:

  • Wildlife Habitat Planting

  • Forest Stand Improvement

  • Upland Wildlife Habitat Management

  • Brush Management

  • Prescribed Grazing

  • Cover Crops

  • Filter strips 

  • Field Borders


The Southern Driftless Grasslands project manager and partner staff want to help you understand EQIP programs and practices that provide financial support for:

  • Prescribed grazing, including pasture seeding, fencing, lanes, and water lines.

  • Oak savanna restoration, including brush management, invasive species

  • control, and prescribed burning.

  • Prairie buffers and borders, both in-field and edge-of-field.

  • Prairie remnant restoration. 

Visit our Resources page for more helpful information about farmland conservation:

Need more help? Not sure where to start?

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