Midwest Cover Crop Council Helps Soybean Producers with Publication

The Midwest Cover Crop Council is a beneficial site for learning a great deal about specifics on successful cover crops. Click here for their website: Here’s their summary of benefits of cover crops:

WHAT DO COVER CROPS DO FOR THE ENVIRONMENT?
  • Enhance biodiversity
  • Increase soil infiltration, leading to less flooding, leaching, and runoff
  • Create wildlife habitat
  • Attract honey bees and beneficial insects

 

WHAT DO COVER CROPS DO FOR FARMERS?
  • Reduce erosion
  • Improve soil quality, through increases in
    • Porosity (reduced compaction)
    • Soil organic matter
    • Water holding capacity
    • Beneficial microbes
    • Micro- and macro-invertebrates
  • Retain nutrients that would otherwise be lost
  • Add nitrogen through fixation (leguminous cover crops)
  • Combat weeds
  • Break disease cycles

Their new publication is specifically about helping soybean producers introduce cover crops into their rotation. Click here for the whole publication.

An intro paragraph in the publication says that “Interest in cover crops has increased greatly, as increasing numbers of meetings, workshops, and field days about the topic can attest. In 2012, the National Agricultural Statistics Service included cover crops in its census and reported that U.S. farmers planted 10.3 million acres of cover crops in 2012 — in the same year, farmers in the North Central Region (NCR) planted 4.5 million acres of cover crops. Cover crops represent 3.6 percent of total NCR cropland, so they have a long way to go before becoming common and accepted before or after soybeans (or in general).”

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