Cover cropping is a common practice in U.S. Midwest carrot production for soil conservation, and may affect soil ecology and plant-parasitic nematodes—to which carrots are very susceptible. This study assessed the impact of cover crops—oats (Avena sativa), radish (Raphanus sativus) cv. Defender, rape (Brassica napus) cv. Dwarf Essex, and a mixture of oats and radish—on […]
Very little practical research data exists on cover crop mixture success & feed quality in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, so a team of Michigan State University researchers recently developed a project to help inform cover crop implementation in the region.
Cover crops have great value for improving soil and controlling weeds in many types of cropping systems. This variety test aims to provide information on suitability of cover crops in Michigan.
Role of Cover Crops and Planting Dates for Improved Weed Suppression and Nitrogen Recovery in No till Systems
A two-year study with six weekly plantings of cover crops including non-winterkilled species (hairy vetch, Vicia villosa L.; winter rye Secale cereale L.) and winterkilled species (oat, Avena sativa L.; forage radish, Raphanus sativus L.) were assessed for effects on growth of forage rape (Brassica napus L.) and weed suppression
Cover crops are grown to protect and/or enrich the soil rather than for short term economic gain. When turned into the soil, a cover crop is called a green manure, so the terms are reasonably interchangeable.
This four-year study investigated how winter cover crops grown alone or in mixture influenced weed presence and crop yield in a reduced tillage organic vegetable system. Treatments were barley (Hordeum vulgare L.), crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum L.), mixed barley þ crimson clover, and a no-cover crop control.
The purpose of this project is to evaluate a novel cover crop interseeder technology, which allows growers to drill cover crops into a standing soybean crop. This practice could transform growers’ ability to integrate legume cover crops into a grain rotation and offset inorganic nitrogen fertilizer needs in the corn phase.
Organic no-till (NT) management strategies generally employ high-residue cover crops that act as weed-suppressing mulch. In temperate, humid regions such as the mid-Atlantic USA, high-residue winter cover crops can hinder early springfield work and immobilize nutrients for cash crops. This makes the integration of cover crops into rotations difficult for farmers, who traditionally rely on […]
Organic farmers are challenged by increasing soil P levels resulting from the use of manure to meet cash crop N needs. The use of a legume cover crop may address this challenge.
Cover crops are important management practices for reducing nitrogen (N) leaching, especially in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, which is under total maximum daily load (TMDL) restraints. Winter cereals are common cool‐season crops in the Bay watershed, but studies have not directly compared nitrate‐N (NO3–N) leaching losses from these species. A 3‐yr cover crop lysimeter study […]
This article reports on field experiments that addressed two primary objectives: (1) compare cover crop establishment and biomass production of drill-interseeded grass and legume cover crops and corn performance across the Mid-Atlantic region and (2) determine if timing of interseeding cover crops into corn (V2–V6) influences cover crop performance and corn grain yield.
The mid-Atlantic region has the highest percentage of arable acreage in cover crops in the United States, with some reports placing Maryland and Delaware as the two states with the highest percentage of total cropland planted with cover crops (Wade et al., 2015; Hamilton et al., 2017). However, the majority of producers in the region […]
Case study of a Maine cattle and forage farmer using No-Till and cover crops in his Corn Silage – Hay rotations.
Evaluation of Winter Cover Crops on Nutrient Cycling, Soil Quality and Yield for Production Systems in the Mid-South
The practice of planting cover crops during fallow periods has increased due to the benefits provided to the soil system, including improved nutrient cycling, addition of organic matter and a more diverse soil fauna resulting in better crop yield and an overall improvement of soil health. Research has shown that microbial activity is sensitive to […]
Conventionally managed, continuous monoculture row-crop production has depleted the soil of nutrients, organic matter, and overall productivity. This has increased the need for external inputs, specifcally N, to meet crop demand. Despite the growing interest in conservation practices, including minimal tillage and cover crops, little work has been reported in the Mid-South region.
Cover Crops and Fertilization Alter Nitrogen Loss in Organic and Conventional Conservation Agriculture Systems
Agroecosystem nitrogen (N) loss produces greenhouse gases, induces eutrophication, and is costly for farmers; therefore, conservation agricultural management practices aimed at reducing N loss are increasingly adopted.
The potential nutrient cycling benefits from legumes (e.g. N2-fixation) and the high biomass potential of cereal rye are well known. Further studies are warranted to evaluate bi-culture mixtures and their effects on soil nutrient stratification and microbial enzyme activity because these two properties may be differently expressed (enhanced) by legume/grass mixes. The objectives of this […]
Cover crops are typically sown between cash crops and can suppress weed emergence and growth. If cover crops are sown after cash crop harvest the system is left susceptible to weed emergence while they establish. Interseeding cover crops into a standing cash crop may limit this bare period by allowing cover crops to become established, […]
Cover crops can benefit agricultural production by improving soil health and productivity, reducing weeds, and providing biomass for grazing. In this one-year study, biomass production was measured in 17 different single species summer cover crops and a fallow control.
Weed control is important to optimize crop production. This study was conducted to compare the effectiveness of different methods of fall-implemented weed control strategies. These strategies included different cover crop mixes, chemical control, and mechanical control. The cover crop mixes included four different commonly-planted winter cover crops.