Tag Archives | Annual Ryegrass
Rye Pit

Root Pit Reveals 40″ Cereal Rye Roots

I am blessed to hear from farmers around the world about their cover cropping adventures.  One young man, Brian Scott, from Carroll County, Indiana has generously shared his information with me again this spring.  This post is Brian’s report from early May, 2013.  To see Brian’s photographs, click here. We dug a few pits in […]

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Surprise!  That's what our reaction was to the volunteer annual ryegrass growing in our fields nearly 18 months after they were sown.

Cover Crops: Buy One Year, Get Another Year Free

Almost two years to the day I posted an article about Killing Tall Annual Ryegrass. The problem of a wet and chilly 2011 has resurfaced an ugly head to be a wet and COLD spring of 2013. But over the past week or so temperatures have warmed into the 70’s and 80’s with cover crop […]

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The soil temperature in the long term no-till soils on 4-12-2013.  Note how waterlogged the soil looks.

Part 3- Do Cover Crops Keep the Soil Colder in the Spring?

Fact or Fiction? Cover Crops that Survive the Winter Keep the Soil Colder in the Spring than Fall-Tilled Soil – Part 3 As of today (April 17, 2013) there is 0% corn planted in Iowa and Indiana with 1% in Illinois and Ohio.  It is now wet and cold…not just cold.  As my brother Don […]

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Soil temperature in the Annual Ryegrass cover crop plot 4-5-2013

Part 2- Do Cover Crops Keep the Soil Colder in the Spring?

Fact or Fiction? Cover Crops that Survive the Winter Keep the Soil Colder in the Spring than Fall-Tilled Soil – Part 2 On Friday April 5, 2013 my brother Don recorded the temperatures in soils on our home farm near Greenwood, IN (central Indiana).  The previous week Don took soil temperatures coming out of a […]

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September 5, 2011 planted Annual Ryegrass compared to Winter Cereal Rye in central Iowa in April 2012.  Note the dramatic difference in winterhardiness.

Cover Crops are Working in Iowa

Cover crops are working in Iowa! While that may not mean much to my eastern corn belt friends it means a lot in Iowa and the upper Midwest. Working with Sarah Carlson from Practical Farmers of Iowa and Tom Kaspar from ARS at Ames, Iowa, we’ve been attempting to identify what cover crops will be […]

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It only takes a few annual ryegrass plants that produce seed to create a weed problem - especially if wheat is in the rotation.

Can Cover Crops Become Weeds?

In a previous post I wrote that cover crops can suppress weeds.  And many farmers are planting them with that primary benefit in mind. But, can cover crops become weeds? Unfortunately, the answer is “yes, they can.”  Obviously we never want this to happen on our farm.  And with good management practices, we can lessen […]

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Beans are ready for harvest but radishes can create a headache if not controlled with season long scouting.

Be Aware of Dormant Seed in Cover Crops

As Oregon and other west coast farmers try to keep up with the demand of getting seed back to the Midwest from their newly harvested crops, we are beginning to see some potential issues with just-harvested seed. In the past, supply was usually greater than demand at harvest time. However, seed companies and farmers now […]

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Each cover crop treatment out yielded the "no cover crop check". The top three yielding plots also had the least compaction and highest chlorophyll readings through out the drought stricken summer.

Cover Crops Provide Improved Corn Yields in On-Farm Trial

All of what is reported below was accomplished after only one year of cover crops.  This work was inspired by a conversation Don and I had last winter with Dr. Eileen Kladivko from Purdue University.  As I say in cover crop meetings, Don’t expect a miracle the first year – but look for one. Over […]

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Radishes growing in corn

Terminating Cover Crops – Use Residual Herbicide

Terminating cover crops is part of the “stepped-up management” that using cover crops requires.  Over the past month I shot videos about killing annual ryegrass, killing crimson clover, and about the difference of killing cereal rye and annual ryegrass.  In each of the videos I examined the importance of killing the cover crop…and killing it […]

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This green leaf tells us that the plant is not entirely dead.  While we may have a 99% kill this plant will end up producing seed if it is not terminated.

Killing Cover Crop Annual Ryegrass – How Are We Doing?

Over the winter of 2011-12 I did nearly 55 cover crop meetings across the Midwest.  And one of the “hottest” topics was how to kill annual ryegrass in the spring. This topic is almost like the Tim Tebow of the cover crop world. Some have no problems managing it and some hate it (cannot get […]

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