The 2014 cover crop trials revealed several factors that influenced grower’s decision to utilize cover crops in their production system.
- Reducing erosion
- Reducing compaction
- Increasing organic matter
- Weed suppression
- Improving soil structure
Wind and water erosion is commonplace on Delta agricultural lands subject to normal tillage practices. While the loss of sediment and nutrients may not be readily apparent on the field, it is very evident in ditches, streams, and lakes throughout the Delta. Although, the true cost of erosion is difficult to quantify, there comes a point when the cost is realized through the observation of its negative impacts to both soil and water resources.
Disclaimer: Through the 2014 Cover Crop Trials we were able to observe the planting and growth of numerous cover crop species across more than 5,000 acres in the Mississippi Delta. The information provided here intends to summarize our experiences and lessons learned.