December 11, 2020 / Program / Keli Kirby


Maryland’s Conservation Buffer Initiative

Introducing Maryland’s new Conservation Buffer Initiative. This pilot program provides a new funding option for farmers who want to plant streamside buffers on their farms to improve the health of local streams and the Chesapeake Bay.

Sign-up begins on January 11 and ends February 5

There are 3 types of buffers eligible for funding. They are forest, grass, and watercourse access control areas adjacent to pastures.

  • Farmers receive a one-time payment for enrolled land with 75% paid when the contract is executed and 25% paid when the project is completed.
  • Payment rates range from $500/acre for an existing grass buffer to a maximum of $3,500/acre to install a riparian forest buffer with fencing.
  • Mowing and hay harvesting are allowed; nutrient applications are not.
  • Contracts are for 5 or 10 years.
  • Soil conservation districts provide free technical assistance to get your buffer installed.
  • All work must be completed by June 30, 2022

Apply online or by mail between January 11, 2021 and February 5, 2021.

For more information and application form, go to:


Application Form:
Special Power of Attorney Form:
Certificate of Sole Proprietorship:
Certificate of Resolution:
Final Payment Form: