Tag Archives: improve water infiltration

Cover Crops and Grazing in Your Future?

A Pennsylvania Extension educator has shown that intensive grazing on cropland low in organic matter can rebuild the soil quickly – in a matter of a few years in some cases. The cover crop and grazing practice also led to a … Continue reading

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Annual Ryegrass – Part of a “Sustainable” Soil Future

If you want to build soil without investing much in a cover crop, consider annual ryegrass. A quick-growing, non-spreading bunch grass, annual ryegrass is a reliable, versatile performer almost anywhere, assuming adequate moisture and fertility. It does a fine job … Continue reading

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New York Times on No-Till Farming and Cover Crops

The New York Times recently published another article praising no-till and cover crops, citing climate severity, costs, environmental concerns and soil health as prime reasons we’re seeing a “paradigm shift” in agricultural practices. Here’s an excerpt, talking about how cover … Continue reading

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Annual Ryegrass Videos – Basics and Advanced Information

Perhaps you’ve already seen these dozen videos about annual ryegrass, both about how to plant and manage it, but also the benefits of having a cover crop on your soil. Click here if you want to review them…the link here … Continue reading

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1st Year Cover Cropper Doubles Down on Annual Ryegrass

The advice about using cover crops for the first time is almost written in stone: “Start with a small parcel.” John Werries, a third generation farmer from Chapin, Illinois, had a few things going for him that allowed him to … Continue reading

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Annual Ryegrass – When to Plant and How Much is Enough?

If you use a no-till drill to plant annual ryegrass, you get better seed to soil contact, but the timing becomes crucial because of crop harvest variability. In the past few years, corn and bean harvests have been later and, … Continue reading

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Annual Ryegrass Roots…”Go Dig!”

“My cover crop wasn’t green this spring!” Don Wirth’s answer to what sounded to him like a complaint was, “Go dig!” His point: when annual ryegrass is established in the fall, it quickly sends roots down below a foot, even … Continue reading

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Annual Ryegrass Touted in SARE Cover Crop Videos

In a series of videos produced by Sustainable Ag Research & Education (SARE): called Cover Crop Innovators, Midwest farmers talk about their experience with annual ryegrass and other cover crops.Click here for the whole series: Or, click here to see … 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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