Cover Crop Studies & Trials

Cover Crop information map

2008 Cover Crop/Corn Yield Experiment

Motivated by a variety of concerns (e.g., spiraling input costs, compaction, root health, extreme weather events, USDA conservation program payments), farmer interest in cover crops has grown dramatically in the past 5 years. Farmers are planting both traditional cover crops (e.g., small grains like oats and cereal rye) and novel species (e.g., brassicas like radish) but the best results may lie in finetuning traditional cover cropping practices. Red clover frost seeded into wheat is perhaps the most time-tested cover cropping system in the Corn Belt but even this system does not always result in a strong stand. This study was conducted to evaluate cover cropping options for improving organic corn performance following poor establishment of red clover frost seeded into wheat. This study was also the preliminary evaluation of radish as a cover crop in Western Illinois

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