Thinking of cover crops as an "annual forage" could help dairy farmers cycle them into their feed rotation.
Reducing dairy greenhouse gas emissions is a whole-farm task. Cover crops and no-till are just one part of the solution.
Changing farm management to use soil health practices like cover crops and no-till can be complicated. But these on-farm changes show some clear benefits for preventing erosion and improving soil for generations to come.
Cover crops can be useful tools to capture excess nutrients. So what happens on a no-till dairy farm when cover crops are left on the field?
Crop residue is no waste--listen and learn how to use crop residue to feed soil microbes and add soil nutrients.
If every hectare of land across the globe included cover crops, we could sequester up to 192 million US tons of carbon every year. How can we get there?
Growing cover crops can be a challenge in environments where growing seasons are shorter or water is less plentiful. But growers are seeing ecosystem service benefits using cover crops, and with some management changes, minimal drawbacks.
Changing practices might come with some changing expenses, but how do these practices impact farm income in the long term?
Cover crops provide an additional source of biomass to the soil. More biomass means more opportunities to sequester carbon!
Wayne Fredericks, a farmer in Osage, IA, adopted cover crops after many years of no-till soybean and strip-till corn. Watch as he talks through the impacts of cover crops on his farm's soil, and how cover crops and reduced tillage can be complementary practices.
Growing crops is all about making good use of solar energy. Though many farms only make use of the sun’s energy from about May through September, Wayne Fredericks maximizes his solar energy harvest with cover crops, improving his soil health in the process.
Wayne Fredericks, a farmer in Osage, IA, has been using cover crops on his farm since 2012. Here, he talks about his journey testing cover crops to help reduce nutrient loss and improve water quality.
One barrier keeping farmers from adopting cover crops is the cost. But Mitchell and Brian Hora have turned their cover crop into an additional cash crop by harvesting mature standing rye over a growing soybean crop.