Top Crop Manager

Features Agronomy
Early harvest cover crops

Thinking about planting cover crops after wheat? Cover crops after wheat provide many benefits, such as preventing erosion, improving soil health and productivity and suppressing weeds.

How to get started with cover crops after winter wheat:

1. Bale off straw or ensure straw and chaff are evenly spread
2. Removing weeds and volunteer wheat allows the cover crop to get a good start
3. Consider your wheat herbicide program when selecting a cover crop
4. Plant as soon as possible after wheat harvest
5. Drill, broadcast or incorporate cover crop seed to get faster results

Cover crop seeding rate chart
Early harvested crops like wheat offer a significant growing period for cover crops. Keep it simple with oats or build diversity with seed mixtures. Adjust seeding rates based on intended use (e.g. higher rates for feed purposes). Available options include (but not limited to):


Cover Crop

Seeding Rate

Goal

Control 

Comments

Oats (or barley)

20 to 50 kg/ha

*********************

80 to 100 (100-125) kg/ha

Cover, soil building

*********************

Feed

Winterkills, tillage,   
herbicide

 

Broadcast or drill

Oats and peas

30 to 50 kg/ha

*********************

80 to 100 kg/ha oats and
50 to 75 kg/ha peas

Cover, soil building

*********************   

Feed




Winterkills, tillage,
herbicide

Drill - peas need soil
contact

Oats and radish

25 to 40 kg/ha

Cover, soil building

Winterkills, tillage,
herbicide

Keep radish rates at
1-3 kg/ha or less

Winter cereals (e.g.
rye, wheat, triticale)   

40 to 60 kg/ha

*********************    

60 to 120 kg/ha

Cover, soil building

*********************

Feed

Tillage, herbicide

May overwinter

Multi mix - 3 or more
species (grass,

legume, broadleaf)

25 to 50 kg/ha +
depending on species

Cover, soil building

Diversity

Tillage, herbicide

May support pollinators
if flowering

Note: Volunteer wheat is inconsistent as a cover crop.


July 28, 2016
By OSCIA

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