Cover crops and plow downs are excellent options for improving your soil amendments naturally. They both will add substantial organic matter and they will also make nutrients more readily available at the soil’s surface. Listed below are cover crops that Elk Mound Seed offers that can immensely improve any farming operation.
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Here’s an excellent link that can help anyone in the Midwest looking to plant cover crops:
Soil Buster/Daikon Radish – 50#/$165
These radishes benefit the soil by alleviating compaction, improving water filtration, increasing organic mater and providing great weed suppression. Studies have shown that planting these radishes consistently increases corn yields. For the greatest soil building capabilities, seed with a legume such as clovers and vetches. Plant at least 4-10 weeks before your area’s first killing frost. Seed at 8/10 lbs/acre or 3/6 lbs acre in mixes.
NitrogenPlus Plow Down – 50#/$119
A mix formulated with two things in mind; Nitrogen fixing capabilities and biomass production. Expect excellent biomass production and more than 2000 lbs of dry matter/acre and as much as 200#/acre of Nitrogen. Seed at 12-15 lbs/acre.
- 33% Yellow Blossom Clover
- 33% Medium Red Clover
- 33% Mammoth Clover
Buckwheat – 50#/$49.95
A great crop for green manure. Expect 2-3 tons of dry matter per acre in decent years.
- Provides excellent weed suppression
- Quick growing
- Seed at 55 lbs/acre, 1” deep
Certified Jerry Hard Red Winter Wheat – 60# / ASK
Control erosion and weeds with this over-wintering crop. Expect valuable grain with yields of 40-80 bu/acre and excellent straw. Plant from September 20th to October 20th in northern Wisconsin. Later plantings are acceptable as you move farther south. Seed at 120 lbs/acre.
ScavengerPlus Plow Down – 50#/$145
Get the best of both worlds with this plow down mix! Comprised of 60% Daikon Radish and 40% Berseem Clover. Get the nutrient scavenging abilities of the daikon radish and the nitrogen fixing capabilities of Berseem Clover! Seed at 8-10 lbs/acre.
Winter Rye – 56# / ASK
Winter rye is one of the most versatile cover crops. It suppresses weeds extremely well and ties up nitrogen close to the soil’s surface. Extremely productive.
- Will germinate in soils as cold as 35°F
- Can handle low fertility and acidic soils
- Long planting window
- Seed at 80-120 lbs/acre at ½” deep
Winter Triticale – 50# / ASK
A cross between winter wheat and winter rye. This cross possess the desirable characteristics of both crops.
- Excellent yields and forage quality
- Great winter hardiness
- Seed at 100-120 lbs/acre
Alsike Clover – 50# / $119
This clover is the most economical plow down you can use while still obtaining considerable nitrogen credits. Seed between 6-10 lbs/acre for plow down situations.
Hairy Vetch – 50# / $119
A top legume for nitrogen production credits and spring plant residue. Earn up to 100 lbs of nitrogen per acre, usually planted late summer with winter rye. Seed at 25 lbs/acre alone or 20 lbs/acre with winter rye.
Berseem Clover – 50# / $135
Recognized by many as the “King of Cover Crops.” Can produce as much as 3 ton/acre of biomass and as much as 200# of nitrogen/acre.
- Unmatched biomass to nitrogen fixing yields
- A non-bloating clover
- Seed at 15-18 lbs/acre alone or 6-9 lbs/acre in mixes
Crimson Clover – 50# / $109
This annual summer clover provides rapid robust growth along with approximately 50 lbs. of nitrogen per acre. Count on up to 1,500 lbs dry matter with crimson clover as a plow down. Seed at 15-20 lbs/acre in spring will small grain.