Cover Crops are becoming more and more popular in southern Minnesota, and really across the nation. Cover crops are crops that are grown to slow erosion, increase the health of the soil, capture and store nutrients, increase organic matter, increase water infiltration, and much more. They are typically planted in September or October and are terminated in the spring, however it is possible to plant them much earlier in the cash crop's growing season. Cereal rye, radish, kale, oats, triticale, annual ryegrass, and turnips are common species that we see going into cover crop mixes.
Different species are better different things. Depending on what your goals are with cover crops, a certain species may be better than another. We highly recommend stopping in the office and talking with staff to narrow down which species may be better suited for your operation.
There is cost share available for implementing cover crops in your practices. Both the NRCS and the SWCD offer programs for cover crop implementation. Stopping into our office or giving us a call would be the best way to figured out which program may be a good fit for you.