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Can cover crops improve soil ecosystem services in water-limited environments?

Cover crops (CCs) are considered to deliver multiple soil ecosystem services, but such potential could vary by climatic region. This leads to the question: can CCs improve soil ecosystem services in low precipitation regions? To answer this, we reviewed published data up to 27 July 2021 regarding CC impacts on CC biomass production, soil organic C (SOC) accumulation, water and wind erosion, soil water, nitrate leaching potential, soil microbial biomass, weed management, crop yields, and livestock production (i.e., CCs as forage) across regions with <500 mm precipitation.

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