Cover Crop Trends, Programs, and Practices in the United States

The soil health improvements that can come with the use of cover crops are associated with a variety of potential on-field benefits for the farmer. Cover crops can enhance soil properties such as aggregate stability, beneficial microbial activity, and the amount of organic matter in the soil. The types of soil health improvements and on […]

Functional Diversity in Cover Crop Polycultures Increases Multifunctionality of an Agricultural System

Cover crops are a tractable way to increase agroecosystem diversity because it is possible to enhance diversity without fundamentally changing other aspects of farm management. The positive relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem function (BEF) suggests that cover crop polycultures could increase functions critical to the production of ecosystem services. A two-year study was conducted to […]

Native Grass Ground Covers Provide Multiple Ecosystem Services in Californian Vineyards

Farming practices like tilling and herbicide application reduce plant diversity by removing natural vegetation and resulting decreases in plant resources can make agricultural landscapes inhospitable for natural enemies of herbivorous pests. This problem can be mitigated by increasing plant diversity in crop fields. This three-year study was conducted to evaluate the effects of native grasses, […]

Cover Crop Root Contributions to Soil Carbon in a No-Till Corn Bioenergy Cropping System

Bioenergy production could provide more sustainable energy and reduce dependency on fossil fuels, while using existing infrastructure for fuel delivery. Crop stover, not used for food, represents an important feedstock for biofuel production, but its removal could lead to lower soil carbon stocks. This study examines the relative contributions of cover crop root and shoot […]