Survey: Cover Crops Improve Yields

Sep 28, 2017

Credit U.S. Department of Agriculture

According to a recent survey, farmers are seeing a number of benefits of using cover crops, including better yields.

As High Plains Journal reports, based on a 2017 Cover Crop Survey - conducted by Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education and the Conservation Technology Information Center -  of just over 2,000 farmers, corn yields increased 2 to 3 bushels per acre, wheat yields increased 1.9 bushels per acre and soybean yields increased 2.1 bushels per acre.

92 percent of farmers responding to the survey also saw improved or unchanged weed control.

Since the survey began being done five years ago, the number of acres farmers are committing to cover crops has increased by an average of almost 200 acres.

Chad Watts executive director of the CTIC, said farmers are beginning to use mixes of different cover crop species, including grasses, legumes and brassicas.

Watts added that non-users of cover crops cite a need for additional training and resources in order to begin planting them.