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Cover Crops - An Introduction

Cover Crops - An Introduction

 Q:   What are the benefits of cover crops?

 A:   Cover crops can improve: 

soil health
hard pan breakup
nitrogen fixation
water infiltration
organic matter content
erosion control
weed suppression
crop diversity
provide an additional grazing opportunity

. . .

 Q:   Won't cover crops steal moisture from my field?

 A:   What benefit is rainfall when it cannot move down into the soil profile? Compaction and plow-pans "steal" just as much of our precious moisture. Including brassicas into a simple, water efficient cover crop mix can greatly increase soil structure and water infiltration.

Which species are right for me?

Determining the type of species to include in your cover crops begins with well-defined goals.

1. Nutrient recycling
2. Nitrogen Fixation
3. Improve Soil Structure / Water Infiltration
4. Weed Suppression
5. Grazing/Hay 

Knowing and understanding your specific needs and goals is crucial to formulating a cover crop mix that will benefit your operation.


Nitrogen Fixation*
High Protein
Rapid Nutrient Release




Cereal Grasses
Build Soil Structure
Increase Organic Matter
Weed Suppression
Mulch Cover

. .


Nutrient Recycling
Highly Palatable
Weed Suppression
Reduce Compaction
Infiltration Improvement
Reduce Nematode Pop.


Warm Season Mix vs Cool Season Mix

Wheat Cropper Mix

Plant when soil temperature is 65+°F
Suggested planting rate: 34 lbs/acre

25# Cowpeas
5# Grazex III Sorghum/Sudangrass
2# Tillage Radish
1# Forage Turnip
1# Forage Rape

Alternative Species:
German R Millet, Sunflowers, Sunn Hemp
....Fall Cropper T Mix 

Plant August 1-15 for Optimum Biomass
Triticale frequently overwinters to provide Spring grazing
Suggested planting rate: 67 lbs/acre

40# Triticale
3# Grazex III Sorghum/Sudangrass
20# Forage Peas
2# Grazing Radish
1# Forage Turnip
1# Forage Rape

Alternative Species:
Austrian Winter Peas, Oats, Barley, Rye, Vetch

Contact us to develop your next cover crop mix today!
Call 620-398-2231 or email
 to get started!