People around Indiana consult the experts in soil and water conservation when they need answers about cover crops and minimum tillage. Soil and water conservation personnel from various agencies within the state of Indiana Conservation Partnership were present to observe as Stephanie McLain demonstrated how planting green is done. The day’s lesson was about cover crops and reduced tillage systems; it seems that these people will talk about them with those who ask, so they need first-hand experience on what this entails. The two agreed wholeheartedly-they needed the soil conservation staff members and trainees trained for just such an occasion to know how corn can be used as a green cover crop.
Nick explains that the previous season, they had tried to improve pasture by broadcasting the seeds on the grounds that had been frozen. This field had daily manure applied on it as well and didn’t hurt the clover. Three days before planting, Rogers sprayed. Also, the cover crop was burnt down using herbicides to prevent any weeds from growing on this side of the farm while his colleague was out there working on preparing for a new season of crops.
He also thoroughly gave insights on how the planter works and the reason why he prefers it. The machine allows them to work with high population numbers since they don’t use colters or residue wheels since it seems they don’t need either. Since last summer, Wenning is working with improved disk openers so far is happy about the progress made cutting through stems and green stalks better than before.
The Wening are always looking for ways to improve the systems they have been working with. When they had the chance, the two wanted to try planting in clover strips while a soil conservation officer watched them mow two sections before planning with a bush hog rotary mower. They did enough so that everyone could make it work out on one pass of the planting machine and see if there was any difference in yield by doing this but also not trying something new without having all bases covered first, like when carrying out the planting of your whole field at once when mowed and when not mowed.
Rogers Wenning is creating strips of freshly cut clover in this trial field. The idea behind the experiment is whether or not mowing will affect seed emergence and early performance for a cover crop like clovers, which typically grow quite well with little to no interference from man-made implements. When it comes down to it, we’re hoping that Roger’s stance is an ecologically sound farming practice when he plants cover crops where livestock have grazed before planting, it will improve our farm while simultaneously benefiting ecosystems around.
As Roger Wenning mows strips in the clover cover crop field, it is also a way to experiment with grazing. It will help monitor yields to see if cattle grazing had an impact on this year’s harvest.
Be on the look for updates on the performance of the section this season!