cover crop mix

Online Tools for Making Better Cover Crop Decisions

New selection tools and ‘recipes’ help growers simplify the decision-making process and fine tune a cover crop mix that is tailored for their location, crop rotation and goals.


Pictured Above: WISE SELECTION. Choosing cover crop species that will thrive in your area is made easier with the range of new cover crop selector tools that have recently become available for farmers

Several online resources are now available that can help make the cover crop decision-making process a little easier.

These tools give users customized advice based on location, cropping rotation, desired cover crop attributes and more. But each tool features different parameters and different user experiences. 

Cover Crop Decision Tool

The Midwest Cover Crops Council’s Cover Crop Decision Tool covers 10 Midwestern states — Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio and Wisconsin — plus Ontario, and users can drill down to the county level to indicate location.

With information on more than 40 cover crops and several mixes, the tool gives farmers a snapshot of what cover crop species will work for given planting dates, whether there is a freeze risk to establishment, and even if and when a species can be frost-seeded. 

In addition, the cover crops are rated in terms of how well they meet desired attributes and goals. 

Click-through links for each species provides detailed information on seeding rates, termination guidelines, cultural traits, potential advantages and disadvantages and more.

Try it at www.mccc.msu.edu.

Covers in the Northeast

Growers in the Northeast, from Maine in the north to Maryland in the south and West Virginia to the west can get cover crop advice from the Northeast Cover Crops Council’s Cover Crop Explorer…

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Julia gerlach web

Julia Gerlach

Julia Gerlach is Executive Editor of No-Till Farmer. She has a lengthy background in publishing and a longtime interest in gardening and mycology. She graduated with a B.A. in music and philosophy from Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wis.

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