Farmland Preservation protects valuable farmland and habitat for recreationally important animals, like salmon, birds, deer, and elk. These projects allow families to continue farming the land they have worked on for generations, and provide Washingtonians with healthy local food and a diverse economy. WWRP is the only source of farmland preservation funding in the state budget.
The scope of this project is to purchase a conservation easement on 80 acres of the Stennes farm in the lower Methow Valley. Originally purchased as a homestead, the Stennes family has been farming the land for 4 generations. Organic pears on orchards covering 45 acres of the site. The property also contains important riparian, riverfront (0.5 mile section of the Methow River) and shrub-steppe, providing habitat for salmonids, bald eagles, and western gray squirrels. The proposed conservation easement will permanently prohibit development of additional homesites. The project is part of a farmland protection partnership with Okanogan Co. and the Methow Conservancy, a local land trust.