Nebraska Cover Crops: What, Where, And How

Dec 24, 2015

Earlier this year 258 Nebraska farmers responded to a UNL survey, sharing information and insights on their current management practices and the use of cover crops in Nebraska cropping systems. Farmers attending the 2015 Pesticide Safety Education Program Courses, Crop Production Clinics, and the Nebraska No-till Conferences were invited to take the survey.

The results of the survey showed:

  • Of the participating farmers, 34% planted cover crops during the previous cropping season.
  • The top ranked barrier to cover crop use was time and labor required to manage cover crops. This was followed closely by cover crop seed cost.
  • Despite being a small proportion of the acres managed, corn silage and hybrid seed corn acres made up slightly over one-third of the cover crop acres.
  • Brassicas and winter cereal grains were the most commonly planted cover crops.
  • Of the farmers who planted cover crops, 49% grazed some portion of their cover crop acres.

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