Test Article with Photo

Characteristics of the wabi-sabi aesthetic include asymmetry, asperity (roughness or irregularity), simplicity, economy, austerity, modesty, intimacy and appreciation of the ingenuous integrity of natural objects and processes.

"Wabi-sabi is the most conspicuous and characteristic feature of traditional Japanese beauty and it occupies roughly the same position in the Japanese pantheon of aesthetic values as do the Greek ideals of beauty and perfection in the West."[1] "if an object or expression can bring about, within us, a sense of serene melancholy and a spiritual longing, then that object could be said to be wabi-sabi."[2] "[Wabi-sabi] nurtures all that is authentic by acknowledging three simple realities: nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect."[3]

The words wabi and sabi do not translate easily. Wabi originally referred to the loneliness of living in nature, remote from society; sabi meant "chill", "lean" or "withered". Around the 14th century these meanings began to change, taking on more positive connotations.[1] Wabi now connotes rustic simplicity, freshness or quietness, and can be applied to both natural and human-made objects, or understated elegance. It can also refer to quirks and anomalies arising from the process of construction, which add uniqueness and elegance to the object. Sabi is beauty or serenity that comes with age, when the life of the object and its impermanence are evidenced in its patina and wear, or in any visible repairs.

McMinn County SCD

Welcome to the McMinn County Soil Conservation District (SCD) Website!

The purpose of this website is to inform the public of available programs and services, as well as to provide insight into the history, employees, and purpose.

The McMinn Soil Conservation District is a soil, water, and wildlife conservation district of the NRCS/USDA (Natural Resource Conservation Service/United States Department of Agriculture) that was adopted on December 28, 1954, after the passing of the 74th Congress' Public Law 46, "The Soil Conservation Act", and in accordance with the Tennessee Soil Conservation District Law No. 197 of the 1939 Tennessee General Assembly. Hugh Hammond Bennett, "The Father of Soil Conservation" was noted as being the leader in accelerating the passing of Public Law 46, which ultimately  established all districts, including McMinn County. The McMinn County Soil Conservation District's boundaries being the same as those of McMinn County, which comprises 432 square miles or 276,480 total acres of land and water.

The original Charter members of this SCD were Rex Moses, Clarence Miller, Carl D. Sliger, J.G. Wilson, and J.K. Pickens. The SCD is governed by a Board of Supervisors, two (2) of which are appointed by the Tennessee State Conservation Committee, each being for three (3) year terms and three (3) of whom are elected by local landowners, each being for three (3) year terms. Both administration work and field duties of a the district are performed by McMinn County SCD and NRCS/USDA employees. Additional Technical and Conservation assistance is provided by the Area 4 NRCS/USDA office in Knoxville, Tennessee, as requested or needed by the District.

Throughout its rich history, McMinn County's SCD has worked diligenty to inform farmers, landowners, and citizens alike of the programs available to allow them to help conserve, maintain, and protect our precious natural resources, as well as to institute primary emphasis on addressing solutions to resource concerns in our community. The "1985 Food Security Act Farm Bill" and all related Farm Bills since require land users to actively apply land conservation and preservation plans and systems in order to participate in farm related programs. It is our direct responsibility to give leadership and guidance to landowners about such bills and government assistance programs.

Since the foundation of its district, McMinn County's landowners and SCD/NRCS staff have undertaken and completed many conservation programs with farmers and related landowners utilizing programs such as the Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP), a cost-share landowner assistance program for those eligible for conservbation practices on cropland and grazing land. A related program is the Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP), also a cost-share program which is designed to establish/enhance habitats critical for wetland wildlife, streams, and fisheries ecosystems, and declining, rare, threatened, or endangered wildlife species, and to control invasive species which decrease the quality, quantity, and diversity of early sucession, upland, and wetland wildlife and fisheries habitats.

Another available program is the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), which is designed to reward good land stewards who are continually striving to improve.

Futhermore, the Tennessee Department of Agriculture (TDA) also offers special assistance through SCD in selected watersheds in McMinn County as well as offering additional funding for conservation practies, for those that qualify.

NRCS also offers easement programs that include but are not limited to, Grassland Reserve Program (GRP), Farm and Ranch Protection Programs (FRPP), and Wetland Reserve Program (WRP) which strive to conserve and protect grasslands, wetlands, forrest, meadows, swamps and eroded, and overgrazed lands.

McMinn County SCD also works with the Farm Service Agengy (FSA) and Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency (TWRA). The TWRA, like the NRCS and TDA, offers additional financial assistance in the state funded programs, such as the most recent Bobwhite Quail Restoration Program, where landowners can receive money from the TWRA for conservation practices in McMinn County, such as Edge Feathering and Hedgerow Renovation, which are done as part of NRCS's WHIP and EQIP programs, which in turn assist the reconstruction of Bobwhite Quail habitat and populaton for furture generations.

Our office is located  at the USDA Service Center, 320 Congress Parkway North, Suite C , Athens, Tennessee 37303. If you have any questions about assistance, eligiblity, and other conservation programs or have any other questions please feel free to contact any available personnel at (423)745-6300 Ext. 3 or vist us at our Athens Field Office anytime Monday-Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Our Board of Supervisor's meets monthly every 3rd Wednesday.

Thank you for visiting our website! We look forward to working for you and will continue to strive for excellence in Agriculture.

The SCD, NRCS/USDA, TDA, TWRA and their affiliates' conducted programs are administrated so that no person shall, on the grounds of race, color, national origin, age, sex, religion, marital status, or handicap be excluded from participation in, or be denied the benefits of or otherwise subjected to discrimination under Federal, State, or District programs of activity. The SCD, NRCS/USDA, TDA, TWRA and their affiliates' are equal opportunity employers and providers.

The McMinn County Soil Conservation District is a government subdivision of McMinn County and the State of Tennessee and is a public body, corporate and politic, organized according to the Soil Conservation District Law, and operates within the powers set forth in Tennessee Code Annoted 43-14-201 and with in the financial and legal powers set forth by NRCS/USDA and by the United States Federal Government.


Board and Staff

Board and StaffRichard "Dick" Hashe------------District Administrative Technician

No-Till Drills and Lime Spreader

No-Till Drills

The District has a 10' Haybuster 107 no-till  drills, a  Great Plains 1006-NT 10' no-till drill, and 2 Great Plains 706 NT 7.5' no-till drill. The Haybuster 107 is setup for conventional seed, native & switch grasses, and legumes. All four (4) have normal opening coulters for conventional no-till sowing, but can use spacers on hydraulic cylinder and adjust press wheels to manage soil penetrating depth. A minimum 70 HP tractor w/duel hydraulics is required for proper operation of both 10' no-drills. A 45HP tractor w/duel hydraulics for the 706 NT 7.5' no-drill.

Rental:  A $120.00 non-refundable deposit (this covers 0 to 15 acres) and $8.00/acre after the first 15 acres. There is a $40.00 clean up fee if the drill is returned without removing the excess seed and being greasing. The District has a shop-vac that you can use at the office to clean out excess seed when you return the drills.

Lime Spreader

The district has a BBI Liberty pull type 5 ton lime spreader. This spreader requires a minimun 50 HP tractor w/duel hydraulics.

Rental: A $75.00/day charge for weekdays and a $112.50 charge for weekends (Saturday and Sunday). You may rent the spreader for the number of days you require. The speader is to be returned by 9:00 A.M. the next morning (Monday morning on weekend rentals) or another days charge will be added.

Call us at 423-745-6300 ext 3 to check on availability, to reserve a date, or ask any questions about our equipment.

Frequently Asked Questions

In what situation do I need a permit to work on blue line streams?

Anything done on streams, stream banks, waterways, or drainage areas should be reviewed by TDEC, TVA, and/or Army Corp of Engineers. If you have questions concerning permit you can contact these agencies at: 

TDEC--Chattanooga EFO, 423-634-5745 or http://www.tennessee.gov/environment/permits/arapgps.shtml.

TVA--Lenior City, 865-632-1320 or http://www.tva.gov/river/26apermits/howto.htm#fees

U.S. Army Corp of Engineers--Nashville, 615-369-7500 or http://www.mvm.usace.army.mil/regulatory/information/instructions.htm                         

Who do I call for a burn permit?

The agency to call for burn permits is the TN Department of Agriculture "Division of Forestry", their local number is 423-745-5729. Permits are required from October 15 thru May 15 and other times during certain weather conditions.

 Where do I find soils information, aerial imagery, and floodplain maps for my property?

The USDA/NRCS has developed a website where all this information can be located. The website provides aerial photography & soil information. http://websoilsurvey.nrcs.usda.gov

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has a great deal of flood information on their website. NRCS has the ability to generate maps with aerial imagery that has a floodplain map overlaid. 

Where do I get soil test done?

You can either go to the local UT Ag Extension Service for test kits or to your local Co-Op. We keep some test kits at our office. 

Who do I call before excavating on my property for locations of uitilty lines (gas, phone, cable, electric,etc.)?

 Before you DIG call "Tennessee One Call" at 811 or 800-351-1111 or go to their website:  http://www.tnonecall.com/. State law requires you to call before digging because a person can be held liable for damages incurred if you dig and do not call Tennessee One Call.

 Who do I contact about wildlife problems (wanted and/or unwanted) on my property?

You need to contact the TWRA regional office. They are located at TWRA Region 3, 464 Industrial Blvd, Crossville, TN 38555 or call 1-931-484-9571 or 1-800-262-6704. The office will then contact your local TWRA officer and have him contact you.

Who do I contact if I suspect illegal dumping or polluting of streams?

Call TN Outdoor Crimes Line at 1-800-890-8366 to report any illegal dumping of trash, hazardous waste, tires, chemicals, soil erosin, air & water pollution, wetland destruction, endangerment of endangered species, fish kills, and environment abuse.

Who do I call about septic tanks and field lines?

Ground Water Protection -Regional office in Knoxville call 1-888-891-8322 or the local office located at: E-911 Center, 1107 S Congress Pkwy, Athens, TN 37303 or call 423-744-7157.

What do I do in case of poisoning?

Call the national POISON HOT LINE 1-800-222-1222 or go to the American Association of Poison Control Center website at http://www.aapcc.org or Tennessee Poison Center at http://tnposincenter.org.

What do I do if I suspect a hazardous material spill?

In case of a hazardous material spill contact your local law enforcement, fire department, or Tennessee Emergency Management Agency 615-741-0001 or website  http://tnema.org/contact.html.

How do I contact the EPA in McMinn County?

 http://www.tn.gov/environment/efo/chattanooga.shtml or call (423) 634-5745





Other questions?