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 are like driving on the highway, using a rifle for hunting game or playing full-tilt in a new sport – you run a better chance of success if you put your sights low the first year. Here are some tips:
- Talk to others about their experience with annual ryegrass cover crops. Preferably, talk to a neighbor, who has similar soil condidtions
- Research your local options for cover crop seed. Ask questions to find out whether your seed dealer is more interested in sales or in conservation tillage
- Buy a variety of seed that has a track record for success. Specifically, you’ll want a variety that has been used in your area, and one that has shown hardiness for withstanding winter weather.
- Plant a small parcel the first year, perhaps 10 acres or a bit more
- Commit to keeping a very close eye on all details of the process: soil type and condition planting date, weather data during the time the cover crop is growing and inputs like nitrogen.
For more info on all these factors, visit our website