Category Archives: Soil Quality

Killing Annual Ryegrass – Part 2

Annual ryegrass is a vigorous plant. Planted last summer or fall, the roots can be established to more than 5 feet into the soil. So, even if there’s only 6 – 8 inches of top growth, treat annual ryegrass as … Continue reading

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SARE Ties with DuPont-Pioneer on Cover Crops

In February, a select group of 300 cover crop experts gathered in Omaha to discuss the prospect of massively enlarging the number of cover crop acres in the Midwest. At present, there’s an estimated 2,000,000 to 3,000,000 acres of corn … Continue reading

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Annual Ryegrass Helps Soil Microbiology Helps Soil Health

“Many times during a drought, plants are not as much water stressed as they are nutrient stressed,” said USDA soil microbiologist Kris Nichols. Cover crops feed a whole web of soil organisms…much more than mere crop residue. Those organisms seek … Continue reading

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Dupont Pioneer Looks at Cover Crops – Annual Ryegrass

Managing Winter Cover Crops in Corn and Soybean Cropping Systems DuPont Pioneer Agronomy Research Summary – 2014 (Click here for full report)   Table 1. Potential benefits of cover crops. Potential Benefit Description Retain Soil Nutrients Cover crops scavenge soil nutrients as … Continue reading

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Annual Ryegrass Seeded into Springtime Corn!

Yes, you read correctly…farmers in Quebec, Canada began experimenting, 5 years ago, with spring seeding annual ryegrass into new corn…when the plants showed between 4 and 6 leaves. Apparently, the annual ryegrass goes dormant when the corn canopy closes over … Continue reading

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Interseeding Annual Ryegrass in New Corn?

Quebec, Canada. Who’d have thought about planting cover crops there? Daniel Briere, an agronomist with Plant Production Quebec, works with local farmers on a novel way to plant annual ryegrass – late in the spring, about six weeks after corn … Continue reading

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Annual Ryegrass in Winter: What’s Goin’ On Down There?

With the frigid weather in the Midwest this winter, it may be that the top growth of your annual ryegrass is looking poorly. Without any snow cover, freezing temperatures can suck the moisture and life out of any plant. But … Continue reading

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New Year, New Cover Crop for You?

Some may have formed this New Year’s resolution back in the summer: to give annual ryegrass a try as a cover crop. As stated by many experts, don’t start too big with something you have little experience with. Cover crops … Continue reading

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Cover Crop Veterans Increase Acreage of Annual Ryegrass in Midwest Corn and Beans

Nick Bowers looked at sales of cover crop seed from his Oregon farm this year and declared “we’re up from last year but the growth has leveled off a bit, compared to previous years.” “The good news of cover crops … Continue reading

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Slake Test Demonstrates Cover Crop’s “Sponge” Qualities…and Bio-health

Ray Makenzie of Marcellus, Michigan, found himself with a thousand acres of highly erodible land when he switched from raising outdoor hogs to a confinement system in 1996. He went to no-till and foresees cover crops next year because of … Continue reading

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