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  • John Kempf

    December 22, 2022 at 7:20 am

    Hi @hallthor ,

    This depends a lot on what stage of adoption and level of management system the farms are at.

    We do not have an in depth understanding of the specific strengths and performances of specific cover crop species and combinations from a nutrient release/sequestration perspective.

    It could be valuable to collect nutrient analysis samples every week throughout the season, and if residue is left on the surface, continue sampling until the residue is gone or the season is over, to understand how many nutrients per acre are contained in the cover crop, and how rapidly they release and become crop available.

    It is commonly suggested that cover crops are necessarily competing with crop plants for water and nutrients, but we know there is wide variation of degree of competition, and even symbiotic collaboration with water and nutrient sharing between some species. It would be valuable to research which cover crops have symbiotic non competitive relationships with specific crop plants.

    Many growers are trying to understand the redox impacts of different cover crop species, and the impact they have on the soil microbiome, which is also very much worth understanding from the perspective of developing disease suppressive soil.

    Hope this is useful, interested in what contributions others might have.