Cover and Catch Crops

What you are trying to do with your cover or catch crops will determine what you should be sowing. The list of options being touted by seeds merchants is almost endless. The key questions that need answers are:

1) Is this part of a stewardship option? If so, there may be specifications on what is planted.
2) Is the main aim to improve the soil or feed livestock?
3) When will it be planted, June or July or will it be after harvested in August or September, or are you looking to under sow a maize crop?
4) When will the next crop be planted, spring or autumn?
5) Are you mainly looking for a grazing crop or are you wanting bulk that can be destroyed after the winter and either ploughed in or direct drilled?

Over the last few years, we have learnt that in most cases increasing diversity of the mix will result in both a greater amount of material being produced and a more reliable crop. This is especially true with organic crops where there is no recourse to the spray can.

With this increased diversity has come a rapidly increasing price for both custom and off the shelf mixes. We have found cost savings of up to 50% and more flexibility to buy the straights that your situation requires.

Your agronomist or crops advisor should be able to help you in selecting the right crop for your situation or contact William at w.waterfield@fcgagric.com or your local FCG office, for help in designing a catch or cover crop for your specific requirements.

Posted in Andover, Arable & Crops, Business Management, Dairy & Forage, Environment, Grant Funding, Organic.