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Cocktail Cover Crops - Oklahoma State University–Stillwater

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Cocktail Cover Crops
Jake Stuckey
Cover Crops: Are crops planted between main crops to prevent erosion or to enrich the soil.A Cocktail cover crop is a mixture of different types of plant seeds.
Seven Benefits of Cover Crops1) Reduce soil erosion by wind and water.2) Provide a home for beneficial insects.3) Improve soil quality; add organic matter to the soil.4) Suppress Weeds5) Break up soil compaction6) Recycle nutrients and scavenge nitrogen and fix nitrogen from the air.7) To cut down on Fertilizer costs.
Cool season BroadleavesAlfalfa*, Clover ( red, sweet, alsike, white), Vetch ( hairy and common)*, winter canola/ rape seed, Radishes ( fodder and oilseed), Turnips, sugar beats, Field peas*, Flax, and Lentils ( red berry and Indianhead)*Cool season GrassesBarley, oats, spring wheat/ rye, winter wheat/ rye, spring/ winter triticale, tall wheatgrass, annual Oregon ryegrass* Are Legumes and can fix atmospheric nitrogen.
Cover Crop Options
Warm season BroadleavesCowpeas*, Soybeans*, and SunflowersWarm season GrassesGrain and forage sorghum, Sudangrass, Millet, Teff grass*Are Legumes and can fix atmospheric nitrogen.
Cover Crop Options
Grazing:turnips, lentils*, rape seed, radish, rye, oats, triticale, sorghum- sudanReducing Compaction:radish, canola*, sugarbeet, sunflower, sorghum- sudan, turnipsMoisture:rape seed, clovers*, winter wheat, rye, triticaleN-Fixation:clovers*, vetches*, lentils*, cowpeas*, soybean*, field peas*
Cover Crop objective and appropriate crop species.
Residue Cycling:Brassicas ( canola*, rape seed, radishes, turnips, and mustards)Nutrient Cycling:Sunflower, sugar beets, brassicas, small grains
Cover Crop objective and appropriate crop species.
Fall cover cropmix example:canola, field peas, oats, radish, andflax.Spring cover crop mix example:cowpeas, sunflowers, sudangrass, millet, and teff grassAll sources say to pick one or two legumes in all cocktail mixes along with one grass, but if grazing your cattle have two grasses.
Cocktail Mixes
Ways to plant cocktail mixturesUsing a drill/ planterAn air seederAirplaneHelicopterTruck spreader
Planting / Spreading cover crops
Use of cover cropsAs far as when to plant cover crops is difficult. Some people like to plant them every year and some like to do it ever other year or every third year and so on.
When to Plant Cocktail Cover Crops.

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Cocktail Cover Crops - Oklahoma State University–Stillwater