Using Milkhouse Waste Water for Alternative Cash Crop

Project Overview

Project Type: Farmer
Funds awarded in 1999: $3,750.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2001
Region: Northeast
State: Vermont
Project Leader:


  • Additional Plants: ornamentals
  • Animal Products: dairy


  • Education and Training: demonstration, farmer to farmer, on-farm/ranch research
  • Farm Business Management: new enterprise development
  • Natural Resources/Environment: wetlands
  • Production Systems: agroecosystems
  • Sustainable Communities: sustainability measures

    Proposal summary:

    Milk house waste water currently drains through a pasture causing wet areas and threatening herd health and a small stream bordering the pasture. Typical waste water disposal using leech fields would be problematic in this case due to the high fat content in waste water. Recent experimentation with "constructed wetland" purification of waste water uses plants in the process. Cattails have been used in other projects, we would like to use ornamental varieties of cattails that could be used in the purification process and sold as an alternative cash crop.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.