Monitoring Soil Nitrate to Estimate Cover Crop Nitrogen Contribution in Organic Vegetable Production Fields

Authors: Nick Andrews, Dan M. Sullivan, and Kristin Pool, Oregon State University

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Organic vegetable growers rely on legume cover crops as an economical source of plant-available  N. This research evaluated N contributions to summer vegetable crops by cover crops (CC)  residues by monitoring soil nitrate (NO3-N) concentrations during the summer crop growing season. Replicated field plots were established with three CC mixes: solo common vetch (V),  phacelia + V (PV), and cereal rye + V (RV), plus a winter fallow (F) control in grower fields in the north Willamette Valley OR. Soil textures were … Read the rest

Estimated Costs for a Winter Cover Crop in an Annual Crop Rotation

Authors: Sarah Light – UC Cooperative Extension Agronomy Advisor, Sutter, Yuba, Colusa Counties; Margaret Lloyd – UC Cooperative Extension Small Farms Advisor, Yolo, Solano, Sacramento Counties; Helaine Berris – Graduate Student, UC Davis, Department of Land, Air, and Water Resources; Donald Stewart – Staff Research Associate, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, UC Davis; Brittney Goodrich – UC Cooperative Extension Specialist, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, UC Davis

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This cost study models the planting and management of a winter cover crop in a summer crop rotation planted in the lower Sacramento Valley of … Read the rest

SIFT 2021: A Small-Scale Urban Intensive Farm Contributes to a Resilient Food System

Authors: John Wallace and Andrew Coggins, NCAT Agriculture Specialists

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NCAT’s Small-Scale Intensive Farm Training program (SIFT) operates a high-altitude urban demonstration farm in Butte, Montana, that is focused on production of food for the good of the community. This publication provides details on the role that the farm plays in educating and producing food for the community. It highlights ongoing cover crop experiments, fruit tree propagation, and water-conservation strategies at the farm, as well as construction of a new high tunnel.… Read the rest

Soil health outcomes of sheep grazing of cover corp in vineyards

Amélie Gaudin, Associate Professor of Agroecology, Department of Plant Sciences

This research explores how biodiversity and animal re-integration through grazing cover crops impacts soil ecosystems and functions in vineyards. We are specifically interested in how sheep grazing impacts understory plant community productivity and species composition and how these interactions alter soil functions such as the formation and turnover of soil organic carbon and nutrients. Funded by CDFA

Contact: Kelsey Brewer, PhD candidate (

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Utah Cover Crop Research and Demonstration

Matt Palmer, Utah State University Extension, Sanpete County Director

Cover crops are being heavily promoted by government agencies and other organizations, yet little replicated research on cover crops has been conducted in Utah. This study proposes a multi-county project to collect replicated data on how cover crops perform and how they influence forage and soil quality in Utah. Funded by USU Extension Grant.… Read the rest

Evaluation of Cover Crop Species for their ability to mitigate soil compaction in an annual rotation

Sarah E. Light, Agronomy Advisor, UC Cooperative Extension

Three species (white mustard, safflower, and triticale) are being evaluated for their ability to mitigate soil compaction. This three-year trial is evaluating winter cover crops grown in a summer annual rotation. Soil compaction measurements, as well as other indicators of soil physical properties, are being collected. This project is funded by the CDFA Healthy Soils Program.… Read the rest