Cover Crops

Sustainability, Environmental Stewardship, and Improved Economics. These are merely a few of the benefits cover crops can have on your land. We are proud to offer an extensive selection of cover crops that fit your needs. Ask us about our mixes and which covers may be best for you!
Our Lineup

Oats

Oats are a great cover crop following soybeans. Often as a part of a mix, they produce good Fall growth and do not come back in the spring, allowing for clean planting conditions with a nice protective mat to prevent soil erosion in hard Spring rains.

Learn more about oats as a cover crop here: 

https://farmdocdaily.illinois.edu/2020/05/cover-crops-and-farm-profitability-in-central-indiana.html

Daikon Radish

Radishes use tap-root power to break up soil compaction, improve aeration and water infiltration, and work well in many blends. These radishes die off through the winter, leaving nice Spring planting conditions.​

Learn more about radishes as cover crops here: 

https://farmdocdaily.illinois.edu/2020/05/cover-crops-and-farm-profitability-in-central-indiana.html

https://ipcm.wisc.edu/blog/2011/04/radish-as-a-cover-crop/

Cereal Rye

Many farmers begin experimenting with cover crops by planting cereal rye into corn stalks with the following crop being soybeans

Learn more about Cereal Rye here:

https://agfax.com/2018/08/15/cover-crops-cereal-rye-weighing-the-costs-vs-benefits/

Annual Rye

Annual ryegrass is a vigorous cool-season grass with an extensive root system. As a cover crop, annual ryegrass helps prevent erosion, builds soil organic matter, improves soil tilth, captures residual nitrogen and can significantly increase the rooting depth of corn and soybeans.

Learn more about Annual Rye as a cover crop here: 

https://www.ryegrass.com/publications/ryegrass-recommendations-2016.pdf

Forage Peas

Large-seeded, cool season annual.  Best companion-seeded with a spring cereal grain to encourage climbing and minimize lodging.

Learn more about Forage Peas as a cover crop here: 

https://fyi.extension.wisc.edu/covercrop/peas/

Purple Top Turnip

Turnips are a fast growing and high yielding crop. The relative low cost of establishing turnips makes them an attractive option for quick feed. Livestock will eat the stems, leaves and roots of the turnip plants.

Learn more about turnips as a cover crop here: 

https://www.covercrop.com/?p=124

Buckwheat

Buckwheat is the speedy short-season cover crop. It establishes, blooms and reaches maturity in just 70 to 90 days and its residue breaks down quickly. Buckwheat suppresses weeds and attracts beneficial insects and pollinators with its abundant blossoms. It is easy to kill, and reportedly extracts soil phosphorus from soil better than most grain-type cover crops.

Learn more about Buckwheat as a cover crop here: 

https://www.sare.org/Learning-Center/Books/Managing-Cover-Crops-Profitably-3rd-Edition/Text-Version/Nonlegume-Cover-Crops/Buckwheat

Birdsfoot Trefoil

Birdsfoot trefoil is a perennial that adapts well to production on poorly drained, low-pH soils (Table 1). It can reseed itself, is resistant to Phytophthora root rot and numerous alfalfa insects, responds well to fertilization, and does not cause bloat in animals.

Learn more about Birdsfoot Trefoil as a cover crop here: 

https://extension.psu.edu/birdsfoot-trefoil

Austrian Winter Peas

High N-fixers, field peas produce abundant vining forage and contribute to short-term soil conditioning. Succulent stems break down easily and are a quick source of available N

Learn more about Winter Rye as a cover crop here: 

https://farmdocdaily.illinois.edu/2020/05/cover-crops-and-farm-profitability-in-central-indiana.html

Rapeseed

In planting canola as a winter cover crop, farmers should make sure they are getting a true winter canola rather than a spring canola variety, which will not normally overwinter(assuming that winter survival is desired). Depending on where the canola is used in the rotation, some consideration should be given to a light fall nitrogen application to encourage good growth and enhance the odds of winter survival; if following soybeans, fall nitrogen fertilization will be less critical than if following corn or winter wheat.

Learn more about Rapeseed as a cover crop here: https://extension2.missouri.edu/g4162

Sunn Hemp

Rapid growth and ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen makes sunn hemp an attractive cover crop for producers wishing to provide additional N, increase surface residue, suppress fallow period weed growth and improve soil health. Sunn hemp is a rapidly growing legume that can produce 2.5 tons of biomass/acre and 120 lbs N/acre in as little as 60 to 90 days.

Learn more about Sunn Hemp as a cover crop here: 

https://extension.okstate.edu/fact-sheets/using-sunn-hemp-as-a-cover-crop-in-oklahoma.html

Crownvetch

Crownvetch has a wide range of climatic adaptations, but its performance has been superior on well-drained soils. It is tolerant of both low pH and low fertility soils. However, it is highly responsive to lime, phosphorus and potassium. Crownvetch is particularly adapted to road bank stabilization and erosion control. 

Learn more about Crownvetch as a cover crop here: 

https://extension2.missouri.edu/g4510

Hairy Winter Vetch

Few legumes match hairy vetch for spring residue production or nitrogen contribution. Widely adapted and winter hardy with snow cover, hairy vetch is a top N provider in temperate and subtropical regions. The cover grows slowly in fall, but root development continues over winter. Growth quickens in spring, when hairy vetch becomes a sprawling vine up to 12 feet long.

Learn more about Hairy Vetch as a cover crop here: 

https://www.sare.org/Learning-Center/Books/Managing-Cover-Crops-Profitably-3rd-Edition/Text-Version/Legume-Cover-Crops/Hairy-Vetch

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