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PLANTING GREEN — defined as planting into a living cover crop that is terminated either immediately before or sometime after planting — is becoming increasingly popular as a tool for letting cover crops benefit soils as long as possible.
Because there is a learning curve involved with the practice, some growers who haven’t tried it are a little leery over the fear of lost time and money or even crop failure.
Josh Payne, who no-tills 800 acres of corn, soybeans and wheat with his grandpa near Concordia, Mo., recently shared several lessons he learned in the 6 years he’s been implementing the practice on his own farm.
Speaking at the 2020 National No-Tillage Conference earlier this year, Payne explained that one of the most important reasons for planting green is dealing with early-season moisture, which is a common problem in Payne’s area.
To make his point, Payne refers to the two pictures above. The first one shows him on the day he was in his field planting into waist-high standing cereal rye. The ground, he says, “was solid and dry — very good conditions.”
FINDING THE RIGHT SETUP. Setting up row units…