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Cover Crop Ideas for the Fall

It is time to start thinking about protecting and replenishing your soil with a cover crop. Weed suppression, soil building and erosion control are just a few of the advantages of cover crops.

When choosing a cover crop for your plot you will want to consider:

  • is it a quick growing crop?
  • do you want the crop to winter kill?
  • do you want to have possible late season forage?
  • do you want an annual or perennial, how long will your plot be fallow?

Use Fescue for lawn, orchard , and steep locations

Annual rye will improve your pasture, build up your soil, and hold your soil from erosion

Sorghum/Sudan offers a late forage option while building your soil with its large amount of biomass

Renovate your pasture with Timothy Grass and Winter Wheat

A natural mulch will be left behind when oats winter kill, leaving your beds prepped and ready for spring planting

The deep roots of winter rye will improve your soil tilth. Turn the rye in the spring 3 weeks before planting for best results.

Break up compacted soil while suppressing weeds with forage radish. The pockets from the large decomposed roots left behind in the spring will catch nutrients and water to be tilled in to your soil before planting.

Mustard leads the way in quick biomass and natural defense against soil born disease. Chop and allow 2 weeks for plant to break down before replanting.

Winter hardy alfalfa is a great choice if you are taking an area out of production for a time. It can be cut, grazed, and turned in when you are ready to use your field again.

Winter Pea will boost your nitrogen. Planting with a grass or small grain will encourage winter survival of the peas and allow for early plowing in the spring.

Clovers can be planted in the fall for early spring emergence. Fix nitrogen, build your soil and feed the bees!

Sainfoin is a perennial often planted with a grass to improve pasture and grazing. Major deer food. Plant with oats and forage radish and feed the wildlife all winter long.

How about the lawn? Spruce up the lawn for next growing season with our CR lawn mix, fescue, or dutch white clover.

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