Check out this great article in the recent edition of Furrow, published by John Deere Company.
Cover Crop Club Learning to Manage Practice Together
by Laura Greiner, State Public Affairs Specialist, USDA/NRCS – Iowa
Trying something new and innovative is always easier when you can learn from someone else’s experience. For a small group of innovative Pottawattamie County farmers experimenting with cover crops, that someone else is Pete Hobson.
Hobson, a 20-year no-till veteran, said he turned to cover crops as a tool to build more organic matter after test results showed his organic matter had plateaued. “Ideally I would like to increase organic matter one percent every 10 years. I went with rye grass because it will root much deeper than wheat or cereal rye and is a better organic matter builder,” he said.
He aerial seeded his rye at the end of this August at a rate of 25 pounds per acre. “I was surprised with how little rain we had in September that it even germed,” Hobson said.
Looking at a mat of green under his corn stalk residue he asked, “ If we can do this well in a dry year, how well can we do in a normal year?”