Cover Crops

Cover Crops

Cover crops are a staple in sustainable agriculture. They are low cost, easy to maintain, and earth-friendly. In the end, planting cover crop seed benefits the soil, the crop, and the grower. Shop a large selection of forage, green manure, nitrogen fixation, and no-till cover crops.

The Barkant Forage Turnip is an improved, early maturing, diploid turnip variety with a large purple tankard shaped bulb. Turnips have a high leaf to stem ratio and and provide very high concentrations of protein, sugar content and leaf yields. This turnip is ideally suited for grazing and it is common to obtain 4-6 tons of dry matter per acre of this high-energy feed.  Uses: Chicken forage, deer attractant, forage

The Sweet Clover is a legume that is exceptional for not only attracting honey bees to the garden, but also creating green manure! This clover can grow nearly anywhere under most conditions. The Sweet Clover is our favorite clover because it is more versatile than other clovers at nitrogen fixating, erosion control and attracting beneficial insects. This variety is slow to establish the first year but comes on fast the following year and can produce up to 170 lb. of nitrogen per acre. The Sweet Clover comes OMRI Pre-inoculated. Uses: Bees & Beneficial Insects, Chicken Forage, Compaction Control, Deer Attractant, Erosion Control, Forage, Green Manure, Nitrogen Fixation, No Till, Weed Suppression

The Packer Forage Pea, or Canadian field pea, is a cool-season legume that is used for cover crops, wildlife and winter grazing! This annual legume has good nitrogen-fixing capabilities. The Packer Forage Pea is a low-growing, viny legume which has been shown to fix over 200 pounds of nitrogen per acre per year. Uses: Chicken Forage, Deer Attractant, Forage, Green Manure, Nitrogen Fixation, No Till, Organic Matter (Biomass), Weed Suppression

A multipurpose cover crop blend that is sowed in fall! This wonderful blend will help with nitrogen fixation, adding organic matter and weed suppression. Contains a blend of Austrian Field Peas, Crimson Clover, Hairy Vetch, Annual and Winter Rye. Cut right after flowering in spring and till into soil for green manure. (30% Field Pea, 20% Crimson Clover, 20% Hairy Vetch, 15% Annual Rye, 15% Winter Rye) Seed Coverage: - 5 lbs covers 2,000-4,000 sqaure feet - 100 lbs covers 1-2 acres Uses: Green Manure, Nitrogen Fixation, No Till, Organic Matter (Biomass), Weed Suppression

Great way to fix nitrogen and add organic matter to the soil! A great mix of grass and legume cover crops. Hairy Vetch works well for nitrogen fixation while Rye adds organic matter and protects the less hardy vetch from winter damage. If planted in fall it comes back early spring with heavy growth. Cut right after it flowers and spring and till into soil. (75% Winter Rye / 25% Hairy Vetch) Seed Coverage: - 5 lbs covers 2,000-4,000 sqaure feet - 100 lbs covers 1-2 acres Uses: Deer Attractant, Green Manure, Nitrogen Fixation, No Till, Organic Matter (Biomass), Weed Suppression

The Sideoats Grama is a warm-season bunchgrass grain variety that is easy to grow and native throughout much of North America. The ornamental and distinctive seed spikes hang from only one side of the stalk, and these make good fresh or dried cuttings. This grain prefers full sun and moderate to dry soils. The Sideoats Grama is recommended for meadow and prairie plantings, beds & borders, and as a component of forage mixes for livestock and wildlife.

Chicory has a long taproot that penetrates subsoils which makes it drought tolerant and allows it to make minerals more available to livestock. Rich in potassium, sulfur, calcium, zinc, sodium, manganese and iron. When managed properly, Chicory produces leafy growth which is higher in nutritive and mineral content than alfalfa and other cool season grasses. Used mainly in mixes with other pasture or cover crop seeds. Chicory (Cichorium intybus L.) - Warm season, broadleaf - Perennial - Upright and spreading growth habit - Protein levels: 10-32% - Forms arbuscular mycorrhizal associations Uses: - Bees & Beneficial Insects - Chicken Forage - Deer Attractant - Forage When to Plant:Brassicas consist of short and long season brassicas. Short season brassicas (rape, turnips, radish) should be planted in mid-July or 75 days before your first frost date in the fall. Long season brassicas (kale, swede) should be planted in early May or 150 days before your first frost date in the fall.How to Plant:Till ground before planting. Then firm ground to make flat. Use a seed broadcaster to spread seed evenly over the ground. Next flatten ground again to secure seeds into soil. When to Plant: Brassicas consist of short and long season brassicas. Short season brassicas (rape, turnips, radish) should be planted in mid-July or 75 days before your first frost date in the fall. Long season brassicas (kale, swede) should be planted in early May or 150 days before your first frost date in the fall. How to Plant: Till ground before planting. Then firm ground to make flat. Use a seed broadcaster to spread seed evenly over the ground. Next flatten ground again to secure seeds into soil. Fertilizing: Add 50 lbs of nitrogen per acre and 200 lbs of 6-24-24 at planting. Location:Planting Depth:Soil Type:Full Sun1/8-1/4"Moist, loamy soil Seeding Rates: Sowing SeasonSeeding Rate (1,000 Sq. Ft.)Seeding Rate (1 Acre)ChicorySpring1/4 lb.3-4  lbs.FlaxSpring and Summer1 lb.27-40 lbs.KaleSpring1/4  lb.4 lbs.RadishLate Summer1 lb.10-20 lbs.RapeSpring & Summer1 lb.5-15 lbs.RutabagaSpring & Summer1/4 lb.3-5 lbs.TurnipSpring or Late Summer1/4 lb.8-10 lbs. Sowing SeasonSeeding Rate (1,000 Sq. Ft.)Seeding Rate (1 Acre)ChicorySpring1/4 lb.3-4  lbs.FlaxSpring and Summer1 lb.27-40 lbs.KaleSpring1/4  lb.4 lbs.RadishLate Summer1 lb.10-20 lbs.RapeSpring & Summer1 lb.5-15 lbs.RutabagaSpring & Summer1/4 lb.3-5 lbs.TurnipSpring or Late Summer1/4 lb.8-10 lbs. Cover Crop Calculator: Calculate the amount of cover crop needed Calculate the amount of cover crop needed 1 Acre = 43,560 square feet, or 435'x100' Weight Conversion: 1 Pound = 16 Ounces

The Common Flax is a cool season annual broadleaf with small taproots and very small, narrow leaves that are less than an inch long. This variety's stems are branched near the base of the plant, with plants reaching 30 to 36 inches in height. The multiple stems or branches of a flax plant are slender and flexible, bearing attractive blue flowers. Flax has the same performance benefits of other grasses and grains, of quick germination and a highly fibrous root mass. Flax will take up excess N and other minerals, will winter kill and provide moderate to high amounts of organic matter back to the soil. Flax provides excellent mulch for protection of erosion and improving water permeation during the winter and spring. Flax (Linum usitatissimum): Cool season, broadleaf, Annual, Upright plant habit Uses: Bees & Beneficial Insects, Chicken Forage, Erosion Control, Green Manure, Nitrogen Savenger, No Till, Organic Matter (Biomass)

The Indiangrass is a warm-season bunchgrass that is native to central and eastern North America and provides cover and food for wildlife. This grass can reach up to seven feet tall and is a common species of the Tallgrass Prairie. The beautiful, plume-like seed heads are very ornamental making them excellent for prairie and conservation mixtures.

The Buffalo Grass is a warm-season grass that is the predominant component of the shortgrass prairies of the Great Plains. Once established, it is extremely drought tolerant and tough. It can be used as a xeriscape lawn grass for water conservation, and it is a common component in range mixtures. White Tailed Deer, Bison and Prairie Dogs utilize it for forage, and it is a larval host for the Green Skipper. Plants are stoloniferous and can invade flower beds if an edging or barrier is not used.

The Elbon Rye is a grain that is the best choice for fast, cool-season germination that prevents erosion and builds organic matter in the soil! Plant this variety early to late fall; in mild climates fall through early spring. This grain captures soil nutrients in the fall to release in spring when worked into the soil. The Elbon Rye can reach up to 5 feet! Cereal Rye (Secale cereale L.): Cool season, grass, Annual or perennial, Upright plant growth, Crude protein: straw 4%, grain 14%, C:N ratio: 40-48, Self pollinator (wind) Uses: Erosion Control, Green Manure, Nitrogen Scavenger, No Till, Organic Matter (Biomass), Weed suppression

The Frontier Grazer Rye is a grain that makes a great cover crop to prevent erosion and build up organic matter in the soil! Plant this variety early to late fall; in mild climates fall through early spring. The best choice for fast, cool-season germination. The Frontier Grazer Rye captures soil nutrients in the fall to release in spring when worked into the soil. Uses: Erosion Control, Green Manure, Nitrogen Scavenger, No Till, Organic Matter (Biomass), Weed Suppression<

The Mandan Wildrye Grass is a fast growing, cool-season, perennial bunch-grass that is a great choice for erosion control. It can be planted early or late fall, but for best results, Mandan Wildrye should be planted in the spring. This hardy grass performs well on most soil types. The Mandan Wildrye produces and brown seed head and can grow up to 4 feet! Uses: Erosion Control, Forage, Green Manure, Nitrogen Scavenger, No Till, Organic Matter (Biomass), Weed suppression

The Canada Wildrye is a cool-season bunchgrass grain variety that can be found throughout Canada and the U.S. except in the southeastern states. It is typically found in prairies, open woods, fields and disturbed sites. This grain tends to be short-lived but provides quick stabilization for erosion control seedings, and it makes a good, early successional component of prairie mixtures. The Canada Wildrye provides quality forage for livestock and wildlife.

The Jackhammer Radish is a fast growing daikon radish variety that is a great scavenger that will start germinating immediately! This variety is very easy to grow. The Jackhammer Radish is good for winter kills and turns into great biomass. Radish (Brassica): Cool Season, broadleaf, Annual, Upright and spreading habit, Root Crop Uses: Nitrogen Scavenger, Green Manure, Forage, Organic Matter, Weed Suppression

The Winter Rye is a tall grain cover crop that can reach up to be 5 feet tall and prevents erosion and builds organic matter in the soil. This grain can be planted early to late fall and in mild climates, fall through early spring. This grain is the best choice for fast, cool-season germination. The Winter Rye captures soil nutrients in the fall to release in spring when worked into the soil. Uses: Erosion Control, Green Manure, Nitrogen Scavenger, No Till, Organic Matter (Biomass), Weed suppression

The Secada Forage Pea is a relatively new forage pea that has a wide range of uses such as forage, green manure, weed suppression and more! This forage pea is highly palatable, self-climbing and with high dry matter yields. A fast growing, cool-season annual legume, the Secada Forage Pea performs very well during the fall, winter and spring in Southern states. In more northern climes, an early spring plant will give high dry matter yields of excellent forage. Uses: Chicken Forage, Deer Attractant, Forage, Green Manure, Nitrogen Fixation, No Till, Organic Matter (Biomass), Weed Suppression

The California Blackeye #46 is similar to California Blackeye #5, but with smaller seeds. Bred by the UCLA and released in 1987. California Blackeye #46 plants are more erect than California Blackeye #5. The seeds are a typical blackeye type of Southern peas with cream-colored seed coats and black pigments around the eyes.  Heavy yielder. If using for Nitrogen fixation we highly recommend using a cowpea inoculant. Try with cowpea inoculant for maximum Nitrogen fixation.