Cover crops are a great way to improve soil health. Many Iowa farmers are adding cover crops to their crop rotations so soil stays covered when the fields are not growing other crops. Cover crops also improve soil organic matter and slow water runoff.
Farmers have many questions about incorporating cover crops. Most asked questions include: what kinds of plants can be used, when and how to seed and when and how to terminate. With field days and workshops, Iowa Learning Farms strives to help farmers, and other interested people, find the answers to these questions and more.
Iowa Learning Farms has received several grants to research cover crops on farmer partner fields. The projects explore the benefits of cover crops on Iowa farmland using winter rye over eight years and using cover crop mixes.