Fitting Cover Crops in Vegetable Rotations

Ron Morse (Virginia Tech, emeritus) shares how to successfully fit cover crops into a vegetable rotation, including establishment methods, matching the right species to the right methods, recommended rotations and cash crop establishment.

Current and Future Directions

Greg Roth (Penn State) presents on behalf of Scott Rushe (Seedway), discussing his take on the future of cover crops, including past and current demand for cover crop seeds (species, mixes, quantities, application situations), and farmer feedback he has heard about performance, cost, and species or traits that are desired but unavailable.

Costs and Benefits of Cover Crops: An Example with Cereal Rye

Cover crops are considered one of the most effective in-field practice farmers can use to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus losses, keeping those nutrients out of streams and lakes. The costs associated with a cover crop will depend on many factors including the previous crop, next crop, tillage system, pesticide practices, cover crop species planted, and […]

An Economic Perspective on Soil Health

To sustain and improve the health of their soil and reduce erosion, farmers can implement various management practices that have both costs and benefits to the farmer. When farmers make decisions about soil health practices, they are often concerned with whether a practice will improve crop yields and/or reduce agricultural input costs. Soil health practices […]

Cover Crop Impacts on Water Dynamics and Yields in Dryland Wheat Systems on the Colorado Plateau

Limited precipitation has long challenged agriculture on the Colorado Plateau, drought and low precipitation levels continue to limit agricultural production in the region. Despite the potential benefits offered by cover cropping, trade-offs are inevitable and cover crops can also compete with subsequent cash crops for water. The notion that cover crops in semiarid systems utilize […]

Soybean Relative Maturity, Not Row Spacing, Affected Interseeded Cover Crops Biomass

Including cover crops in corn or soybean cropping systems provides soil cover, increases biodiversity and soil organic matter, utilizes available nutrients by preventing leaching, and may increase growth and yield of the following crop. By growing an early-maturing soybean, it may be possible to give the cover crops more time in the fall to establish […]

Cover Cropping: A Malleable Solution for Sustainable Agriculture? Meta-Analysis of Ecosystem Service Frameworks in Perennial Systems

Although ecological rationales for cover cropping have been elucidated, the implementation of the practice lags. There has been slow and limited adoption of cover cropping in many parts of the world. This disconnect is important because to address societal imperatives the widespread adoption of sustainable agricultural approaches must occur, and cover cropping is a cornerstone […]

Spring-Planted Cover Crops for Weed Control in Soybean

Cover crop (CC) biomass is generally proportional to its ability to provide weed control. In addition, some CC release allelopathic compounds that contribute to weed suppression by inhibiting germination and early growth. In corn-soybean systems, CC are usually established in the fall after corn harvest and terminated prior to soybean planting. However, labor and equipment […]

Establishment Methods for Cover Crops and Cash Crops in Grain Production Systems

Steven Mirsky (USDA-ARS) and Greg Roth (Penn State University) provide a rundown of common establishment methods for cover crops: aerial seeding, interseeding and post-harvest drilling. They also discuss the importance of matching the right cover crop species with the right methods. Sjoerd Duiker (Penn State University) discusses: no-till versus tillage; optimal timing of cash crop […]

Establishment Methods for Cover Crops and Cash Crops in Grain Production Systems – Greg Roth Slide Presentation

Steven Mirsky (USDA-ARS) and Greg Roth (Penn State University) provide a rundown of common establishment methods for cover crops: aerial seeding, interseeding and post-harvest drilling. They also discuss the importance of matching the right cover crop species with the right methods. Sjoerd Duiker (Penn State University) discusses: no-till versus tillage; optimal timing of cash crop […]

Establishment Methods for Cover Crops and Cash Crops in Grain Production Systems – Dr. Mirsky Slide Presentation

Steven Mirsky (USDA-ARS) and Greg Roth (Penn State University) provide a rundown of common establishment methods for cover crops: aerial seeding, interseeding and post-harvest drilling. They also discuss the importance of matching the right cover crop species with the right methods. Sjoerd Duiker (Penn State University) discusses: no-till versus tillage; optimal timing of cash crop […]

Current and Future Directions – Slide Presentation

Greg Roth (Penn State) presents on behalf of Scott Rushe (Seedway), discussing his take on the future of cover crops, including past and current demand for cover crop seeds (species, mixes, quantities, application situations), and farmer feedback he has heard about performance, cost, and species or traits that are desired but unavailable.  

Evaluating and Improving Cover Crop Performance and Adoption

Many of the benefits of cover crops are known and their use is increasing, but more can be done to evaluate and improve their performance and adoption. In this session, Sjoerd Duiker (Penn State University) discusses the possibility of adoption without government regulation or incentives. Dean Hively (USGS) reviews the use of remote sensing to […]