Cover photo for Farmable Wetlands Program

Farmable Wetlands Program

Farm Service Agency

The Farmable Wetlands Program (FWP) is designed to restore previously farmed wetlands and wetland buffer to improve both vegetation and water flow. FWP is a voluntary program to restore up to one million acres of farmable wetlands and associated buffers. Participants must agree to restore the wetlands, establish plant cover, and to not use enrolled land for commercial purposes. Plant cover may include plants that are partially submerged or specific types of trees.

The Farm Services Agency (FSA) runs the program through the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) with assistance from other government agencies and local conservation groups.

By restoring farmable wetlands, FWP improves groundwater quality, helps trap and break down pollutants, prevents soil erosion, reduces downstream flood damage, and provides habitat for water birds and other wildlife. Wetlands can also be used to treat sewage and are found to be as effective as “high tech” methods. 


Farmers and ranchers in any state can take part in the program. However, there are restrictions on the land and amount of acreage that can be enrolled. Land generally must have been used for agricultural purposes for 3 of the past 10 crop years, can include a man-made wetland used to process water flow for crop drainage, can have been used for aqua farming purposes, or has been used for prairie wetland overflow purposes. 

Interested landowners should check with their local FSA office for other requirements and limitations related to acreage and restricted years of activity. 

Application Instructions

Offers for FWP are accepted throughout the year. FWP contracts last between 10 and 15 years. All enrollment offers are processed through your local FSA office

Updated March 22, 2024

Image Credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture

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