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Cover crop planting disrupted from late harvest

A cover crops educator says fall seeding has been delayed with the late, wet harvest season.

Michigan State University Extension’s Christine Charles tells Brownfield, “The priority is getting stuff out of the field and if that’s not going to happen then cover crops aren’t going to go in as timely.”

“We still have a window for some early season grasses to get in clovers are a great option, they’ll come up quick,” she says.

Charles encourages farmers who experienced extreme wet and dry conditions this year to experiment with cover crops in the year ahead.

“To see how that practice incorporates and affects your landscape, especially if you’re struggling with keeping fields moist, or incorporating those covers in order to help drain and infiltrate the water that you do have on your field, looking into ways to buffer the extreme,” she says.

She says frost seeding during the winter or even trying drone applications are options.  Charles will be studying aerial, drone and broadcast cover crop seeding differences in the year ahead.

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