The Ogeechee River Soil and Water Conservation District Board of Supervisors partners with area banks to recognize an individual or business as the district’s “Conservationist of the Year in Soil and Water.”
For 71 years, this honor has been bestowed to those who have attained high standards of excellence in soil and water or have significantly contributed to the advancement of soil and water conservation efforts within the area. This year’s recipient from Effingham County is Shiloh Farms’ Bruce Redmond.
Larry Redmond started Shiloh Farms — headquartered between Guyton, Springfield and Rincon — in the late 1980s. Bruce, his son, has followed in his footsteps. Larry was named the district’s Conservationist of the Year in 1993.
The farm has grown to 2,200-plus acres. It has always been a diverse operation. Over the years, it has grown cotton, corn, peanuts, rye, grain sorghum, soybeans, cattle, timber.
Currently, it even grows Bahia grass for seed.
“I think Larry taught Bruce one of the most important lessons you can learn on a farm,” said Dewey Newton, vice president of Ag South Credit's Corporate Lending Group. “You take care of the land, and the land will take care of you. It is obvious Bruce has taken this to heart.”
Bruce’s 2021 conservations efforts included:
· Built/maintained terraces and grassed waterways to control erosion
· Converted pivot irrigation systems to low-pressure sprinklers to conserve water
· Utilized GPS grid soil samples to conserve fertilizer
· Employed rotational planting of Bahia grass to improve soil quality
· Scouted his crops to minimize use of insecticides and herbicides
· Participated in Soil & Water programs to benefit the farming operation
“These examples prove that Bruce in this for the long haul,” Newton said. “And as you can tell, he wants to do all he can to take care of the land for generations to come.”
Bruce and his wife, Jill, have three young daughters.