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More rain tonight on already flooded fields create a tough situation for many Midwestern farmers.

Prevented Planting Row Crop Acres – Which Cover Crops Can Help?

The following was originally posted on May 27, 2011 when the Eastern Corn Belt was suffering with severe flooding and wet conditions.  In 2013 the Upper Midwest – especially Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin – is flooded and wet.  Many farmers are considering taking the crop insurance for prevented planting.  Even if it would stop raining […]

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Cover crops for gardens – and my wife, the cover cropping queen!

My wife Sally must love me…or at least she is observant to see how cover crops are improving the soil in our family gardens.  Over the nearly 19 years we have lived in our home we have had a garden where we often have raised vegetables for the Hispanic families that we minister to.  A […]

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No-Till Corn on Corn planted into Oats and AU Robin Crimmson Clover

Photo diary- Corn after a cover crop (after corn)

“Planting this corn field was like planting into a garden” said my friend Dave.   He has been a ‘cover cropper” for six years now.  This year Dave no-tilled approximately 50% of his acres.  Dave is one of the most innovative guys I know…but he’s also “cautious”; he does not want to lose money!  That’s why […]

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What if a cover crop dies over the winter…was it still valuable?

As I take phone calls and conduct meetings I ask producers if they want to have the cover crop they are choosing to overwinter or die during the winter.  I’d guess that the answer as split 50/50. The biggest reason for wanting the cover crop to die is that producers don’t want to have “to […]

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Cover Crop plots in December-What can we tell now? part 2

In this post we look at two more videos of mixes on December 2, 2010.  This first mix in this session is of Austrian Winter Peas and GroundHog Radishes.  The seeding rate is 30# Peas and 5# of Radish per acre.  The main thing we observe in this plot is the larger radishes than we […]

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Big Radish fed by Crimson Clover

The video below shows the value of Crimson Clover in a cover crop setting.  Crimson clover has been tested and shown to produce as much as 140#/N after it has been planted after wheat.  The plots in this video were planted around July 29, 2010 by the Jasper and Newton County SWCD folks (Thanks Dan […]

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What Cover Crop Geeks Do For Fun…

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Radish and Crimson Clover Video

This video was taken from a cover crop plot in Newton County Indiana.  The plot was in a field that was prevented from being planted by water ponding in the Spring of 2010.  The mix is called “N-Vest Crimson Cover-All Mix” and is sold by CISCO Seeds.  Even with very little moisture, (it was planted in […]

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Crimson Clover…Great Cover Crop for Corn Producers

After talking to hundreds of row crop producers about cover crops, I was reminded of how much crimson clover offers to the corn farmer.  Not only will crimson clover produce somewhere between 70-140 units of N (with approximately 1/2 of that being available for the next crop…the other percentage goes to building soil organic matter), it also […]

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Crimson Clover; a jewel among the cover crop legumes

Crimson clover is a real jewel among the cover crop species.  Crimson clover is an excellent producer of nitrogen and there are some newer varieties on the market that are very winterhardy even into Michigan.  Dr. Eileen Kladivko measured how much nitrogen was produced by crimson clover in a test plot in western Indiana.  What […]

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