Tag: cover crop

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“We have an infiltration problem, not a runoff problem.” This Ray Archuleta quote was much discussed on third and final installment in the American Society of Agronomy’s 2017 webinar series “Cover Crops – Looking Beyond the Basics.” The webinar, which took place on February 9, featured Anne Verhallen, a soil scientist from the Ontario Ministry of […]

March 21, 2017 

BLOG POST

Are you grazing cover crops this spring, or plan to in the fall? If so, it’s important to check and see if your corn or bean herbicides have grazing restrictions. Some common herbicides do not allow for grazing of cover crops or crop residue. If you’re grazing covers this spring, look back at what herbicides […]

March 9, 2017 

BLOG POST

On Thursday February 2, Practical Farmers held a cover crop field day at Whiterock Conservancy in Coon Rapids, Iowa. Thirty or so attendees at the field day tuned in to the second webinar in the Agronomy Society of America’s “Cover Crops 2017 – Looking Beyond the Basics” series sponsored by SARE. Practical Farmers member Chris […]

February 3, 2017 

BLOG POST

In a Nutshell
• Delaying cover crop termination until
near soybean planting would allow
for more biomass production by the
cover crop in the spring presenting the
opportunity for more environmental
benefit.
• Two farmer-cooperators continued
work they began in 2015 that compares
terminating a cereal rye cover crop 2-3
weeks prior to seeding soybeans (early
termination) with terminating the cover
crop within 5 days of seeding soybeans
(late termination).
Key findings
• Jeremy Gustafson saw a 2 bu/ac increase
and improved weed control with
the late termination treatment in 2016.
This amounted to a $49.97/ac economic
benefit compared to the early termination
treatment. In 2015, soybean
yields were equivalent between the two
termination date treatments.
• Jack Boyer saw no difference in soybean
yields between the two cover
crop termination treatments in either
year. In 2015, he was able to skip a
post-emergence herbicide application
which saved him approx. $40/ac.

November 30, 2016 

RESEARCH REPORT

• This project tested the effect on
over-wintered garlic yield of planting
date and two mulching strategies:
companion-seeded oat cover crop vs.
straw mulch.
• Farmer-cooperator Mark Quee planted
garlic in September with a companion
oat cover crop (oat residue following
winterkill intended to serve as mulch).
Garlic planted in October was mulched
with straw.
Key Findings
• September-planted garlic had higher
yield than October-planted, but pervasive
rot in several areas of the field
may have impacted results.

November 18, 2016 

RESEARCH REPORT

In a Nutshell
• Cover crops and summer annual
forage mixes can provide a host of
benefits to annual cropping systems:
add biodiversity, reduce soil erosion,
reduce nutrient loss, increase soil
organic matter and reduce weed pressure.
• Dave and Meg Schmidt evaluated the
effect of applying chicken litter to a
cereal rye + hairy vetch cover crop
and grazing the cover crop ahead of
establishing a summer annual forage
mix.
Key findings
• Grazing the cereal rye + hairy vetch
cover crop resulted in more biomass
production than where not grazed.
• The application of chicken litter did
not affect cover crop growth or summer
annual forage biomass production.
• Hairy vetch in the cover crop successfully
established (seeded in late August
2015) and may have contributed a
substantial amount of N to the succeeding
summer annual forage crop.

October 25, 2016 

RESEARCH REPORT

The Farm Progress Show was in Boone, IA last week. Practical Farmers of Iowa has been hosting a booth at the show the past three times its been held in Boone, IA. The booth was filled with cover crop plants, PFI materials and most importantly PFI farmer experts who shared advice about cover crops with other […]

September 9, 2016 

BLOG POST

Cover crop planting season is coming for the northern Cornbelt! Many farmers are gearing up to aerial seed cover crops but how can we make sure we have green fields in the fall during harvest? Take some hints from cover cropper Nathan Anderson who farms near Cherokee, IA. In Nathan’s part of the state, sufficient […]

August 12, 2016 

BLOG POST

Click to watch PFI member Fred Abels' presentation about his conservation story on YouTube.

August 8, 2016 

BLOG POST

The third webinar in the American Society of Agronomy series discussed the financial return on investment when adding cover crops to a predominately corn and soybean system. Show me the Money, Can cover crops pay? What economic data is available on changes in costs and revenue when cover crops are added to your system? Learn the […]

July 27, 2016 

BLOG POST