Showing posts from July, 2013

Cover Crops after Wheat

With wheat soon to be harvested, think about planting cover crops to improve their soil health. There are four major types of cover crops including grasses, legumes, brassica and others. Grasses tend to accumulate nutrients with their fibrous root system and generally make phosphorus more available. They generally have a higher carbon to nitrogen (C:N) ratio. Major grasses include oats, wheat, cereal rye, annual ryegrass, Sudan-sorghum, and barley. These grasses are a grown before soybeans, may absorb left over nitrogen from fertilizer or manure, are good erosion fighters, and reduce soil compaction. Cereal rye (wide leaf) is a winter annual that germinates at 30F. Cereal rye improves soil compaction and suppresses weeds. Annual rye (narrow leaf) is another winter annual with a tremendous root system but may be hard to kill in spring. Sorghum Sudan is a summer annual that dies with the first frost so it needs to be seeded immediately after wheat harvest. Mow or chop after it grows 3 fe