Education & Outreach

PEH2PMNRCD's youngest members assist with the watershed model at the Poultney Earth Fair.

The primary goal of the Poultney Mettowee Natural Resources Conservation District is to provide educational programming about our local natural resources. We routinely bring together individuals, landowners, and representatives of community-based organizations to facilitate educational programs around current natural resource issues or concerns. We also celebrate the diversity of our surrounding landscape through educational programming.

Our education objectives include:

  • fostering an appreciation for, and knowledge of, the natural world among students and other community members
  • encouraging responsible environmental citizenship among our residents, resulting in sustainable local ecosystems, communities, and economies
  • using locally-collected data to illustrate our education topics, encouraging a greater understanding of our area
  • including programming that informs our citizenry of research, studies, and data results for our area
  • devising a framework for coordinating and developing program activities, maintaining staffing/volunteers
  • diversifying and updating our programming to sustain environmental education programs for the long-term

Educational Programs Brochure 2016

SPOTLIGHT - Educational Programs

Lake Wise Assessments

Since 2019, PMNRCD has offered Lake Wise Assessments free of charge to lakeside homeowners in the area. These assessments provide information that homeowners can use to implement lake-friendly land management practices. Through a variety of partnerships with local lake associations including the Lake St Catherine Association (LSCA), the Lake St Catherine Conservation Fund (LSCCF), and the Lake Bomoseen Association (LBA), the District has conducted over 60 Lake Wise Assessments on three local lakes. A recent partnership with the LSCA has included their writing for and receiving multiple grants to support and greatly increase the number of homes we assess each year on Lake St Catherine. This dynamic project includes installation of small water quality practices at the assessed homes.

Watershed Alliance South

Watershed Alliance South is a program initiated by the University of Vermont’s Lake Champlain Sea Grant (LCSG).  PMNRCD works closely with LCSG to provide watershed-based science education to area schools.  The District typically works with six schools per year to provide in-stream programming; measuring the physical, biological, and chemical properties of a local stream and then using that information to assess the health of the stream.  Please reach out to Ashley Eaton for more information:

Lake Education and Action Program

Through Lake Education and Action Program (LEAP), the District partners with homeowners along Lake Saint Catherine and Lake Bomoseen to provide education and promote good land stewardship practices to protect the water quality in the lake.  The District combines forces with a team of Poultney High School student interns to provide native buffer plantings and invasive plant removal activities, complete educational surveys, and go door-to-door with information about a variety of water quality topics.  The LEAP program has created a successful partnership between residents on Lake Saint Catherine and the District since 2004.  

Photo of a LEAP crew after an educational boat ride on Lake St Catherine. The interns are prepared to plant their next shoreline buffer.

The Nursery Example Gardens

We are busy making example gardens at our Native Plant Nursery  highlighting the functional uses of native plants on the landscape.  In the upcoming season the Nursery is hoping to add a pollinator and a rain garden. In the meantime take a virtual tour of the our planned gardens!

>> CVNPRN Pollinator Garden

>>CVNPRN Rain Garden

Looking for more Information?

Link to the National Wildlife Foundation's interactive Plant Finder tool.

Link to information through the Native Plant Trust on native gardening.

Link to information through the Environmental Protection Agency on landscaping for healthy soil and water.

Link to The Vermont Rain Garden Manual developed through Lake Champlain Sea Grant, UVM Extension, and the Winooski NRCD

Related Lesson Plans

Stream Table Rental

The Conservation District has received an EM River stream table from the Lake Champlain Basin Program available for use in classrooms and programs within the South Lake Watershed community.   Stream tables are interactive demonstration tools that can be used for a range of   audience levels.  These models simulate river processes and can be used to demonstrate scenarios such as erosion and deposition of sediment, impacts from storm events, stream bank management techniques, culverts sizing, and impacts from land use development, as well basic scientific and mathematic principles. 

The stream table will be available to rent at low cost for educational purposes within the community.  Rentals include pre developed lesson plans, a variety    accessories (model houses, culverts, bridges, stone, plants etc.), and South Lake Watershed  specific materials such as maps and photos. Lesson Plans are geared towards Elementary students but we encourage you to get creative on how to apply similar learning outcomes for order age groups. For usage of one day up to one week we ask a rental fee of $50 to cover transportation and any required maintenance.

Please contact Sadie if you are interested in renting the stream table or have questions about the program. Email-

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